Geologist Nikolai Lavyorov of the Russian Academy of Sciences blasted the rankings released last week by the journal Nature.
"I'm absolutely convinced it's nonsense, since Russian science is a world leader in many spheres [of research]," Lavyorov told RIA Novosti, citing the space industry, nuclear technology and Arctic research as examples.
The Nature ranking was based on the number of primary researcher papers published in Nature magazine and its 17 subsidiary publications in 2012.
The Russian Academy of Sciences, with 21 publications, was near the bottom of the list.
Buts its poor rating is an "artificially exaggerated situation," Lavyorov said.
Russia is doing enough research, he said, but was not making enough effort to promote its research in the English-speaking world.