According to the International Benchmarking Study of UK Research Performance, 8% of the world’s scientific papers are written in the UK.

(In 2009, the UK produced 91,723 scientific papers, third only to the US and China. The most prolific country is the USA and China now produces more scientific papers than the UK, but they are cited less frequently by other scientists.  That said, China is expected to overtake the USA by 2012.)