Professor Salim Abdool Karim is on the 2019 list of the world’s most Highly Cited Researchers published by the Web of Science’s Clarivate Analytics. Abdool Karim, Director of CAPRISA and Pro Vice-Chancellor (Research) at UKZN was also part of this list in 2018. He is a professor at three ivy-league universities – Columbia, Cornell and Harvard – in the USA.

Each year, the Web of Science produces a list of the world’s most highly cited researchers which contains about 6 000 names, comprising less than 1% of researchers globally. This year, it features 6 217 Highly Cited Researchers in various fields from nearly 60 nations and includes 23 Nobel Laureates. The analysis includes 21 broad research fields (including the social sciences) and includes cross-field performance, as some Highly Cited Researchers appear in more than one field.

According to David Pendlebury, Senior Citation Analyst at the Institute for Scientific Information, ‘The Highly Cited Researchers list contributes to the identification of that small fraction of the researcher population that contributes disproportionately to extending the frontiers of knowledge. These researchers create gains for society, innovation and knowledge that make the world healthier, richer, more sustainable and more secure.’

The United States is home to the highest number of Highly Cited Researchers, followed by the United Kingdom and China. About 15 researchers from Africa appear on the list, including one from UKZN. Researchers from the Universities of Cape Town, Stellenbosch, and Pretoria, and the National Institute for Communicable Diseases (NICD) are some of the other South Africans featured.

Words: Smita Maharaj

Photograph: Supplied