, Volume 113, Issue 3, pp 1463–1479 | Cite as

Promoting scientodiversity inspired by biodiversity

  • Yoshi-aki Shimada
  • Jun Suzuki


Diversity of science (variety in and balance among research subjects) is often regarded as a key driver of innovation, but it is typically understood by means of heuristics, given the lack of precise formulations such as those found in biodiversity studies. From the policy perspective, a standard methodology for characterization of diversity of science is needed to enable the efficient management and breeding of diverse research responsive to socio-economic demands. We investigated the distribution of research subjects in a bibliographic database to develop a framework of diversity of science analogous to that of biodiversity. Our analysis of the distribution of research subjects among countries suggests that diversity of science has similar statistical characteristics as biodiversity. We find that number of research subjects follows log-normal distribution for almost all countries and indicates linear dependency on research budget in log–log plot. We also identify an inflection point in the subject–budget relationship curve. The results may validate the adoption of sophisticated concepts and techniques from biodiversity work in “scientodiversity” studies.


Diversity of science Log-normal distribution Classification R&D expenditure Biodiversity 

Supplementary material

11192_2017_2545_MOESM1_ESM.docx (82 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOCX 81 kb)


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Copyright information

© Akadémiai Kiadó, Budapest, Hungary 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.National Graduate Institute for Policy Studies (GRIPS)TokyoJapan
  2. 2.Center for Research and Development Strategy (CRDS)Japan Science and Technology AgencyTokyoJapan

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