In contrast with other countries of the Central America biodiversity “hotspot”, El Salvador has received considerable attention from the scientometrics point of view. According to previous studies, the country is unusual in its strong concentration of research funds in the social sciences, and in the unexpectedly low productivity and visibility of its scientific institutions. We only found 788 publications with El Salvador authors in the Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED) until 2015, mostly in English and about health, environment and agriculture. Articles have more authors than previously found for the rest of Central America. The fact that two historically important articles were written exclusively by Salvadoran scientists indicates the potential for high level science that the country has had at least since 1940. Scientific productivity and international collaboration are improving, but the whole productivity and impact of scientific institutions of El Salvador remain unknown because the country publishes 130 scientific journals that are not included in the SCI-EXPANDED. There is a clear need for a regional database covering Central American science and its citation.

Keywords: Web of Science, Latin America, scientific productivity, most productive authors and institutions, research fields.