Statistics and resources 

Here, you can download the data, explore interactive data visualizations or find factsheets about the main trends in science around the world between 2011 and 2019. 

Some of the key findings of the UNESCO Science Report address: 

  • Human resources in research 
    Between 2014 and 2018, the researcher pool grew three times faster (13.7%) than the global population (4.6%). This translates into 8 854 million full-time equivalent (FTE) researchers by 2018. In 28 countries, researcher density expanded by at least 20% over this period. 
  • Research expenditure 
    Between 2014 and 2018, global research spending (in PPP$ billions, constant 2005 prices) rose by 19.2%, outpacing the growth of the global economy (+14.6%). This translated into a rise in research intensity from 1.73% to 1.79% of GDP. In 25 countries, research intensity grew by 0.15% of GDP or more. 
  • Scientific publications 
    There has been a general trend towards more intense scientific publishing, with global output being 21% higher in 2019 than in 2015. Publications on cross-cutting strategic technologies such as artificial intelligence and robotics, energy and materials science even surged by 33%. Among broad fields, environmental sciences showed the fastest growth between 2015 and 2019 (+45.7%), albeit from a low starting point: environmental sciences accounted for 3.6% of global output in 2015. At the global level, the rate of international scientific collaboration rose from 22% to 24% between 2015 and 2019, with wide variations between countries. 
How to cite and share the data

All data prepared for the UNESCO Science Report (2021) are freely available for download and use, following the terms of the CC by BY-SA 3.0 IGO license. The source should be cited as:  
UNESCO (2021) UNESCO Science Report: the Race Against Time for Smarter Development. S. Schneegans, T. Straza and J. Lewis (eds). UNESCO Publishing: Paris.  

Cite and share

The UNESCO Science Report is available in open access under the Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 IGO (CC BY-SA 3.0 IGO) license.  

When using or sharing these data, please cite as:  
UNESCO (2021) UNESCO Science Report: the Race Against Time for Smarter Development. S. Schneegans, T. Straza and J. Lewis (eds). UNESCO Publishing: Paris.