Tropical Medicine and Health
Online ISSN : 1349-4147
Print ISSN : 1348-8945
ISSN-L : 1348-8945
Original Paper
Scientific Productivity on Research in Ethical Issues over the Past Half Century: A JoinPoint Regression Analysis
Nguyen Phuoc LongNguyen Tien HuyNguyen Thi Huyen TrangNguyen Thien LuanNguyen Hoang AnhTran Diem NghiMai Van HieuKenji HirayamaJuntra Karbwang
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2014 年 42 巻 3 号 p. 121-126


BACKGROUND: Ethics is one of the main pillars in the development of science. We performed a JoinPoint regression analysis to analyze the trends of ethical issue research over the past half century. The question is whether ethical issues are neglected despite their importance in modern research.METHOD: PubMed electronic library was used to retrieve publications of all fields and ethical issues. JoinPoint regression analysis was used to identify the significant time trends of publications of all fields and ethical issues, as well as the proportion of publications on ethical issues to all fields over the past half century. Annual percent changes (APC) were computed with their 95% confidence intervals, and a p-value < 0.05 was considered statistically significant.RESULTS: We found that publications of ethical issues increased during the period of 1965–1996 but slightly fell in recent years (from 1996 to 2013). When comparing the absolute number of ethics related articles (APEI) to all publications of all fields (APAF) on PubMed, the results showed that the proportion of APEI to APAF statistically increased during the periods of 1965–1974, 1974–1986, and 1986–1993, with APCs of 11.0, 2.1, and 8.8, respectively. However, the trend has gradually dropped since 1993 and shown a marked decrease from 2002 to 2013 with an annual percent change of –7.4%.CONCLUSIONS: Scientific productivity in ethical issues research on over the past half century rapidly increased during the first 30-year period but has recently been in decline. Since ethics is an important aspect of scientific research, we suggest that greater attention is needed in order to emphasize the role of ethics in modern research.

© 2014 Japanese Society of Tropical Medicine
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