Higher Education

, Volume 65, Issue 4, pp 487–510 | Cite as

Deepening our understanding of academic inbreeding effects on research information exchange and scientific output: new insights for academic based research



This paper analyzes the impact of academic inbreeding in relation to academic research, and proposes a new conceptual framework for its analysis. We find that mobility (or lack of) at the early research career stage is decisive in influencing academic behaviors and scientific productivity. Less mobile academics have more inward oriented information exchange dynamics and lower scientific productivity. The analysis also indicates that the information exchange and scientific productivity of academics that changed institutions only once do not differ substantially from that of “mobile inbred academics”. This emphasizes the need for mobility throughout scientific and academic careers and calls for policies to curtail academic inbreeding.


Academic inbreeding Mobility Doctoral socialization Academic profession Information exchange dynamics Scientific productivity 


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© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Centro de Estudos em Inovação, Tecnologia e Políticas de Desenvolvimento, Instituto Superior TécnicoTechnical University of LisbonLisbonPortugal
  2. 2.Centro de Investigação e Estudos de Sociologia (CIES)Instituto Superior de Ciências do Trabalho e da Empresa (ISCTE-IUL)LisbonPortugal

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