, Volume 95, Issue 2, pp 771–784 | Cite as

Geographical distance in bibliometric relations within epistemic communities

  • Per AhlgrenEmail author
  • Olle Persson
  • Robert Tijssen


Scientists collaborate increasingly on a global scale. Does this trend also hold for other bibliometric relations such as direct citations, cocitations and shared references? This study examines citation-based relations in publications published in the journal Scientometrics from 1981 to 2010. Different measures of Mean Geographical Distance (MGD) are tested. If we take all citation links into consideration, there is no indication of MGD increase, but when we look at maximum distances of each relation, a weak tendency of increasing MGD could be observed. One major factor behind the lack of growth of mean distances is the form of the distribution of citation links over distances. Our data suggest that the interactions might grow simultaneously for both short and long distances.


Direct citations Co-authorships Co-citations Geographical distance Shared references 


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Copyright information

© Akadémiai Kiadó, Budapest, Hungary 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of e-Resources, University LibraryStockholm UniversityStockholmSweden
  2. 2.Department of Sociology, InforskUmeå UniversityUmeåSweden
  3. 3.Centre for Science and Technology Studies (CWTS)Leiden UniversityLeidenThe Netherlands

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