Scientific communities outside Europe and the U.S. have become more competitive over recent decades due to greater investment, restructuring and increased evaluation. Most scientists probably have a vague sense of this, aware that there are many more competent scientists and interesting results coming from abroad than in the past. This paper argues that as a result, it is possible for the U.S. scientific community to perform as well as it has ever done, yet for it to appear to be in decline. This paper will explore the trajectory of the U.S. research enterprise in an international context to highlight some of the surprising consequences that strengthening of foreign R&D systems can have for trends in U.S. research output.
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/diana_hicks/1/