The structure and dynamics of networks of scientific collaborations in Northern Africa
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- Landini, F., Malerba, F. & Mavilia, R. Scientometrics (2015) 105: 1787. doi:10.1007/s11192-015-1635-1
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We examine the structure and dynamics of network of scientific international collaborations within North Africa (Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia and Egypt) using both publishing and patent data. Results show that the region has undergone a sustained process of internationalization, which has translated in both an expansion of the network of scientific collaborations and a relative increase in the research output of international teams. At the same time we find the existence of a very limited degree of scientific integration at the regional level, i.e. within Northern Africa. Among the countries examined, Egypt seems to be the most active one in terms of size of research output as well as number and variety of international collaborations. Moreover, Egypt is the most central node of the regional research network and this centrality has considerably grown over time. This increased importance of Egypt as regional research hub is associated with a remarkable increase in the centrality of Saudi Arabia within Egypt’s research network. This holds across a variety of research fields as well as in terms of applied science (as shown by patent data). Overall, these results suggest that the region is undergoing a deep transformation in the structure and composition of scientific collaborations.