World science can be characterized as the product of one scientist or nation — knowledge or published papers — used or consumed by other scientists or nations. In this sense, science can be viewed as an input-output system, analogous to the models used in economics. An input-output model of the citation patters of the 18 leading countries in international science was constructed. These countries produce most of the world's science. The large role of the United States in both producing and consuming scientific information is evident in the results. The models also show the role of other countries with respect to each other. For example, the multinational nature of science in countries like the Netherlands and Switzerland is evident. The model can be used to show which countries interact with others, and which do not. Both types of information are useful in discussing trans-national interactions in science.
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