View More View Less
  • 1 Physics Department and Complexity & Networks, Imperial College, London, UK t.evans@imperial.ac.uk
  • | 2 Department of Mathematics and Naxys, University of Namur, Namur, Belgium renaud.lambiotte@fundp.ac.be
  • | 3 School of Business and Management, Queen Mary University of London, London, UK
Restricted access

Abstract

This paper investigates the role of homophily and focus constraint in shaping collaborative scientific research. First, homophily structures collaboration when scientists adhere to a norm of exclusivity in selecting similar partners at a higher rate than dissimilar ones. Two dimensions on which similarity between scientists can be assessed are their research specialties and status positions. Second, focus constraint shapes collaboration when connections among scientists depend on opportunities for social contact. Constraint comes in two forms, depending on whether it originates in institutional or geographic space. Institutional constraint refers to the tendency of scientists to select collaborators within rather than across institutional boundaries. Geographic constraint is the principle that, when collaborations span different institutions, they are more likely to involve scientists that are geographically co-located than dispersed. To study homophily and focus constraint, the paper will argue in favour of an idea of collaboration that moves beyond formal co-authorship to include also other forms of informal intellectual exchange that do not translate into the publication of joint work. A community-detection algorithm for formalising this perspective will be proposed and applied to the co-authorship network of the scientists that submitted to the 2001 Research Assessment Exercise in Business and Management in the UK. While results only partially support research-based homophily, they indicate that scientists use status positions for discriminating between potential partners by selecting collaborators from institutions with a rating similar to their own. Strong support is provided in favour of institutional and geographic constraints. Scientists tend to forge intra-institutional collaborations; yet, when they seek collaborators outside their own institutions, they tend to select those who are in geographic proximity. The implications of this analysis for tie creation in joint scientific endeavours are discussed.

  • Allen, T. 1977 Managing the flow of technology MIT Press Cambridge, MA.

  • Baker, M. J., Gabbott, M. 2002 The assessment of research. International Journal of Management Education 2 3 315.

  • Ball, D. F., Butler, J. 2004 The implicit use of business concepts in the UK research assessment exercise. R D Management 34 1 8797 .

  • Barabási, A. L., Jeong, H., Neda, Z., Ravasz, E., Schubert, A., Vicsek, T. 2002 Evolution of the social network of scientific collaborations. Physica 311:590614 .

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Blondel, V. D., Guillaume, J.-L., Lambiotte, R., & Lefebvre, E. (2008). Fast unfolding of communities in large networks, Journal of Statistical Mechanics, P10008.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Börner, K., Chen, C. M., Boyack, K. W. 2003 Visualizing knowledge domains. Annual Review of Information Science and Technology 37:179255 .

  • Boyack, K. W., Klavans, R., Börner, K. 2005 Mapping the backbone of science. Scientometrics 64:351374 .

  • Braunerhjelm, P., Feldman, M. 2006 Cluster genesis: Technology-based industrial development Oxford University Press Oxford.

  • Cairncross, F. 1997 The death of distance Harvard University Press Cambridge MA.

  • Camic, C. 1992 Reputation and predecessor selection: Parsons and the institutionalists. American Sociological Review 57:421445 .

  • Chen, C. M. 2003 Mapping scientific frontiers: The quest for knowledge visualization Springer Berlin.

  • Chung, S., Singh, H., Lee, K. 2000 Complementarity, status similarity and social capital as drivers of alliance formation. Strategic Management Journal 21:122 .

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Colizza, V., Flammini, A., Serrano, M. A., Vespignani, A. 2006 Detecting rich-club ordering in complex networks. Nature Physics 2:110115 .

  • Cooper, C., Otley, D. 1998 The 1996 research assessment exercise for business and management. British Journal of Management 9:7389 .

  • Crane, D. 1972 Invisible colleges University of Chicago Press Chicago.

  • Cummings, J. N., Kiesler, S. 2007 Coordination costs and project outcomes in multi-university collaborations. Research Policy 36 10 138152 .

  • De Castro, R., Grossman, J. W. 1999 Famous trails to Paul Erdös. Mathematical Intelligence 21:5163 .

  • Ding, Y., Foo, S., Chowdhury, G. 1999 A bibliometric analysis of collaboration in the field of information retrieval. International Information and Library Review 30:367376 .

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Expert, P., Evans, T. S., Blondel, V. D., Lambiotte, R. 2011 Uncovering space-independent communities in spatial networks. Proceedings of the National Academy of Science 108:76637668 .

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Feld, S. L. 1981 The focused organization of social ties. American Journal of Sociology 86:10151035 .

  • Fortunato, S. 2010 Community detection in graphs. Physics Reports 486:75174 .

  • Frenken, K., Hardeman, S., Hoekman, J. 2009 Spatial scientometrics: Towards a cumulative research program. Journal of Informetrics 3:222232 .

  • Gertler, M. S. 2003 Tacit knowledge and the economic geography of context or the undefinable tacitness of being (there). Journal of Economic Geography 3:7599 .

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Greenfeld, L. 1989 Different worlds: A sociological study of taste, choice and success in art Cambridge University Press Cambridge, England .

  • Hellsten, I., Lambiotte, R., Scharnhorst, A., Ausloos, M. 2007 Self-citations, co-authorships and keywords: A new method for detecting scientists’ field mobility?. Scientometrics 72:469486 .

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Higher Education & Research Opportunities (HERO) in the United Kingdom (2001). A Guide to the 2001 Research Assessment Exercise.

  • Hidalgo, C. A., Klinger, B., Barabási, A. L., Hausmann, R. 2007 The product space conditions the development of nations. Science 317:482487 .

  • Jaffe, A. B., Trajtenberg, M., Henderson, R. 1993 Geographic localization of knowledge spillovers as evidenced by patent citations. Quarterly Journal of Economics 108 3 578598 .

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Jones, B. F., Wuchty, S., Uzzi, B. 2008 Multi-university research teams: Shifting impact, geography, and stratification in science. Science 322 5905 12591262 .

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Katz, J. S., Martin, B. R. 1997 What is research collaboration?. Research Policy 26:118 .

  • Kossinets, G., Watts, D. J. 2006 Empirical analysis of an evolving social network. Science 311:8890 .

  • Kraut, R., Egido, C., Galegher, J. 1990 Patterns of contact and communication in scientific research collaboration J. Galegher R. Kraut C. Egido eds. Intellectual teamwork: Social and technological bases of cooperative work Lawrence Erlbaum Hillsdale, NJ 149171.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Laband, D. N., Tollison, R. D. 2000 Intellectual collaboration. Journal of Political Economy 108:632662 .

  • Lambiotte, R., Panzarasa, P. 2009 Communities, knowledge creation and information diffusion. Journal of Informetrics 3:180190 .

  • Latour, B. 1987 Science in action Harvard University Press Cambridge, MA.

  • Lazarsfeld, P. F., Merton, R. K. 1954 Friendship as social process: A substantive and methodological analysis M. Berger T. Abel C. Page eds. Freedom and control in modern society Van Nostrand New York, NY 1866.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Leydesdorff, L., Ward, J. 2005 Science shops: Adoscope of science-society collaborations in Europe. Public Understanding of Science 14:353372 .

  • Leydesdorff, L., Rafols, I. 2008 A global map of science based on the ISI subject categories. Journal of the American Society for Information Science 60:348362.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Lorange, P., Roos, J. 1992 Strategic alliances Blackwell Cambridge, MA.

  • McPherson, J. M., Smith Lovin, L., Cook, J. M. 2001 Birds of a feather: Homophily in social networks. Annual Review of Sociology 27:415444 .

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Monge, P., Rothman, L., Eisenberg, E., Miller, K., Kirste, K. 1985 The dynamics of organizational proximity. Management Science 31:11291141 .

  • Moody, J. 2004 The structure of social science collaboration network: Disciplinary cohesion from 1963 to 1999. American Sociological Review 69:213238 .

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Newman, M. E. J. 2001 The structure of scientific collaboration networks. Proceedings of the National Academy of Science 98:404409 .

  • Newman, M. E. J. 2001 Scientific collaboration networks. I. Network construction and fundamental results. Physical Review E 64:016131 .

  • Newman, M. E. J., Girvan, M. 2004 Finding and evaluating community structure in networks. Physical Review E 69:026113 .

  • Opsahl, T., Colizza, V., Panzarasa, P., Ramasco, J. J. 2008 Prominence and control: The weighted rich-club effect. Physical Review Letters 101:168702 .

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Podolny, J. M. 1994 Market uncertainty and the social character of economic exchange. Administrative Science Quarterly 39:458483 .

  • Podolny, J. M., Stuart, T. E. 1995 A role-based ecology of technological change. American Journal of Sociology 100:12241260 .

  • de Solla Price, D. J. 1965 Networks of scientific papers. Science 149:510515 .

  • Reagans, R. 2005 Preferences, identity, and competition: Predicting tie strength from demographic data. Management Science 51 9 13741383 .

  • Reichardt, J., Bornholdt, S. 2004 Detecting fuzzy community structures in complex networks with a Potts model. Physical Review Letters 93:218701 .

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Rosvall, M., Bergstrom, C. T. 2008 Maps of random walks on complex networks reveal community structure. Proceedings of the Natonal Academy of Science 105:1118 .

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Scharnhorst, A., & Ebeling, W. (2005). Evolutionary search agents in complex landscapes—A new model for the role of competence and meta-competence (EVOLINO and other simulation tools), arXiv:0511232.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Traud, A. L., Kelsic, E. D., Mucha, P. J., & Porter, M. A. (2010) Community structure in online collegiate social networks, arXiv:0809.0690.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Wallace, M. L., Gingras, Y. 2008 A new approach for detecting scientific specialties from raw cocitation networks. Journal of the American Society for Information Science 60:240246.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • Whitfield, J. 2008 Group theory. Nature 455:720723 .

  • Wuchty, S., Jones, B. F., Uzzi, B. 2007 The increasing dominance of teams in production of knowledge. Science 316:10361039 .

Manuscript submission: http://www.editorialmanager.com/scim/

  • Impact Factor (2019): 2.867
  • Scimago Journal Rank (2019): 1.210
  • SJR Hirsch-Index (2019): 106
  • SJR Quartile Score (2019): Q1 Computer Science Apllications
  • SJR Quartile Score (2019): Q1 Library and Information Sciences
  • SJR Quartile Score (2019): Q1 Social Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Impact Factor (2018): 2.770
  • Scimago Journal Rank (2018): 1.113
  • SJR Hirsch-Index (2018): 95
  • SJR Quartile Score (2018): Q1 Library and Information Sciences
  • SJR Quartile Score (2018): Q1 Social Sciences (miscellaneous)

For subscription options, please visit the website of Springer

Scientometrics
Language English
Size B5
Year of
Foundation
1978
Volumes
per Year
4
Issues
per Year
12
Founder Akadémiai Kiadó
Founder's
Address
H-1117 Budapest, Hungary 1516 Budapest, PO Box 245.
Publisher Akadémiai Kiadó
Springer Nature Switzerland AG
Publisher's
Address
H-1117 Budapest, Hungary 1516 Budapest, PO Box 245.
CH-6330 Cham, Switzerland Gewerbestrasse 11.
Responsible
Publisher
Chief Executive Officer, Akadémiai Kiadó
ISSN 0138-9130 (Print)
ISSN 1588-2861 (Online)