The Web has become an important means of academic information exchange and can be used to give new insights into patterns
of informal scholarly communication. This study develops new methods to examine patterns of university Web linking, focusing
on Mainland China and Taiwan, and including language considerations. Multiple exploratory investigations into Web links were
conducted between universities in these two places. Firstly, inlinks were counted to each university Web site from its national
peers using four alternative Web document models. The results were shown to correlate significantly with research productivity
in Taiwan but not in the Mainland, although in the latter case less reliable institutional data could have been the cause.
For Taiwan, this is the first evidence of a scholarly association with academic linking for a non-English speaking region.
It was then ascertained that the same link counts associated more strongly with scientific than social scientific research
productivity in Taiwan. This confirms the general assumption of greater Web use by the hard sciences. We then investigated
Taiwan-Mainland university cross-links, and found that although English is extensively used on the Web, there was no evidence
that it was the language of preference for informal scholarly communication between the two areas.