Biodiversity and Conservation

, Volume 27, Issue 6, pp 1503–1516 | Cite as

The sociology of sea turtle research: evidence on a global expansion of co-authorship networks

  • Antonios D. Mazaris
  • Chrysoula Gkazinou
  • Vasiliki Almpanidou
  • George Balazs
Original Paper
Part of the following topical collections:
  1. Coastal and marine biodiversity


The conservation of biological diversity represents a major challenge for modern societies. Research offers the fundamental information to advance and integrate our knowledge on ecological systems, their processes and interactions. Yet, the transfer of scientific knowledge and results represents a critical step towards enhancing conservation efficiency. Here, we use sea turtle research, as an example to test the potential and dynamics of international scientific cooperation reflecting the advancement of knowledge. The selection of sea turtles as a case study was mainly based on two factors. First, they represent a highly mobile group of species with cosmopolitan distribution that cross geopolitical borders, policies and agreements. Second, encouraging evidence on global population recovery are increasingly presented. We used research publications on sea turtles (from 1967 since 2016) as the main product of scientific knowledge, to develop a series of co-authorship networks. Countries that were mentioned in authors’ affiliations were used as nodes, with two nodes being connected if authors of these countries had collaborated as co-authors in a publication. The properties of the co-authorship networks revealed that sea turtle scientific collaboration networks are ] getting larger and spreading constantly over different countries through time. Network metrics revealed a robust and coherent network supported by numerous countries. Our results showed a steady flow of scientific information among countries within sea turtle research communities, a factor that might have contributed to the encouraging evidence on sea turtle population trends observed globally. This analysis highlights the potential benefits generated by international collaborations reflecting the integration of skills, scientific backgrounds and knowledge.


Graph theory Multinational cooperation Marine turtles Network connectivity 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V., part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Antonios D. Mazaris
    • 1
  • Chrysoula Gkazinou
    • 1
  • Vasiliki Almpanidou
    • 1
  • George Balazs
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Ecology, School of BiologyAristotle UniversityThessaloníkiGreece
  2. 2.Golden Honu Services of OceaniaHonoluluUSA

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