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A routine for measuring synergy in university–industry–government relations: mutual information as a Triple-Helix and Quadruple-Helix indicator

Abstract

Mutual information in three (or more) dimensions can be considered as a Triple-Helix indicator of possible synergy in university–industry–government relations. An open-source routine th4.exe makes the computation of this indicator interactively available at the internet, and thus applicable to large sets of data. Th4.exe computes all probabilistic entropies and mutual information in two, three, and, if available in the data, four dimensions among, for example, classes such as geographical addresses (cities, regions), technological codes (e.g. OECD’s NACE codes), and size categories; or, alternatively, among institutional addresses (academic, industrial, public sector) in document sets. The relations between the Triple-Helix indicator—as an indicator of synergy—and the Triple-Helix model that specifies the possibility of feedback by an overlay of communications, are also discussed.

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Acknowledgments

We thank Øivind Strand for providing data about Tromso. We acknowledge support from the SSK (Social Science Korea) Program funded by the National Research Foundation of South Korea; NRF-2010-330-B00232; Balázs Lengyel acknowledges support from the Hungarian Scientific Research Fund (PD106290).

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Correspondence to Loet Leydesdorff.

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Leydesdorff, L., Park, H.W. & Lengyel, B. A routine for measuring synergy in university–industry–government relations: mutual information as a Triple-Helix and Quadruple-Helix indicator. Scientometrics 99, 27–35 (2014). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11192-013-1079-4

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Keywords

  • Indicator
  • Triple Helix
  • Quadruple Helix
  • Software
  • Information theory
  • Mutual information
  • Mutual redundancy