Close to the edge: co-authorship proximity of Nobel laureates in Physiology or Medicine, 1991–2010, to cross-disciplinary brokers
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- Fields, C. Scientometrics (2015) 103: 267. doi:10.1007/s11192-015-1526-5
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Between 1991 and 2010, 45 scientists were honored with Nobel prizes in Physiology or Medicine. It is shown that these 45 Nobel laureates are separated, on average, by at most 2.8 co-authorship steps from at least one cross-disciplinary broker, defined as a researcher who has published co-authored papers both in some biomedical discipline and in some non-biomedical discipline. If Nobel laureates in Physiology or Medicine and their immediate collaborators can be regarded as forming the intuitive “center” of the biomedical sciences, then at least for this 20-year sample of Nobel laureates, the center of the biomedical sciences within the co-authorship graph of all of the sciences is closer to the edges of multiple non-biomedical disciplines than typical biomedical researchers are to each other.