Characterizing Research Leadership on Geographical Weighted Collaboration Network

by   Chaocheng He, et al.

Research collaborations, especially long-distance and cross-border collaborations, have become increasingly prevalent worldwide. Recent studies highlighted the significant role of research leadership in collaborations. However, existing measures of the research leadership do not take into account the intensity of leadership in the co-authorship network. More importantly, the spatial features, which influence the collaboration patterns and research outcomes, have not been incorporated in measuring the research leadership. To fill the gap, we construct an institution-level weighted co-authorship network that has two types of weight on the edges: the intensity of collaborations and the spatial score (the geographic distance adjusted by the cross-border nature). Based on this network, we propose a novel metric, namely the spatial research leadership rank (SpatialLeaderRank), to identify the leading institutions while considering both the collaboration intensity and the spatial features. Harnessing a dataset of 323,146 journal publications in pharmaceutical sciences during 2010-2018, we perform a comprehensive analysis of the geographical distribution and dynamic patterns of research leadership flows at the institution level. The results demonstrate that the SpatialLeaderRank outperforms baseline metrics in predicting the scholarly impact of institutions. And the result remains robust in the field of Information Science Library Science.


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