Can epidemic models describe the diffusion of research topics across disciplines?

Broom, M., Kiss, I. Z. & Rafols, I. (2009). Can epidemic models describe the diffusion of research topics across disciplines?. Paper presented at the 12th International Conference of the International Society for Scientometrics and Informetrics, 14-07-2009 - 17-07-2009, Rio de Janeiro.

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Abstract

This paper introduces a new approach to describe the spread of research topics across disciplines using epidemic models. The approach is based on applying individual-based models from mathematical epidemiology to the diffusion of a research topic over a contact network that represents knowledge flows over the map of science –as obtained from citations between ISI Subject Categories. Using research publications on the protein class kinesin as a case study, we report a better fit between model and empirical data when using the citation-based contact network. Incubation periods on the order of 4 to 15.5 years support the view that, whilst research topics may grow very quickly, they face difficulties to overcome disciplinary boundaries.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Uncontrolled Keywords: knowledge diffusion, epidemic model, science map
Subjects: Z Bibliography. Library Science. Information Resources > Z665 Library Science. Information Science
Divisions: School of Engineering & Mathematical Sciences > Department of Mathematical Science
URI: http://openaccess.city.ac.uk/id/eprint/12576

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