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Exploring the interdisciplinary evolution of a discipline: the case of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology

Author

Listed:
  • Shiji Chen

    () (Library of China Agricultural University
    Université de Montréal)

  • Clément Arsenault

    () (Université de Montréal)

  • Yves Gingras

    () (Université du Québec à Montréal)

  • Vincent Larivière

    () (Université de Montréal
    Université du Québec à Montréal)

Abstract

This study explores interdisciplinarity evolution of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology (BMB) over a one-hundred-year period on several fronts, namely: change in interdisciplinarity, identification of core disciplines, disciplinary emergence, and potential discipline detection, in order to assess the evolution of interdisciplinarity over time. Science overlay maps and a StreamGraph were used to visualize interdisciplinary evolution. Our study confirms that interdisciplinarity evolves mainly from neighbouring fields to distant cognitive areas and provides evidence of an increasing tendency of BMB researchers to cite literature from other disciplines. Additionally, from our results, we can see that the top potential interdisciplinary relations belong to distant disciplines of BMB; their share of references is small, but is increasing markedly. On the whole, these results confirm the dynamic nature of interdisciplinary relations, and suggest that current scientific problems are increasingly addressed using knowledge from a wide variety of disciplines.

Suggested Citation

  • Shiji Chen & Clément Arsenault & Yves Gingras & Vincent Larivière, 2015. "Exploring the interdisciplinary evolution of a discipline: the case of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology," Scientometrics, Springer;Akadémiai Kiadó, vol. 102(2), pages 1307-1323, February.
  • Handle: RePEc:spr:scient:v:102:y:2015:i:2:d:10.1007_s11192-014-1457-6
    DOI: 10.1007/s11192-014-1457-6
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    2. Zhi-Yi Shao & Yong-Ming Li & Fen Hui & Yang Zheng & Ying-Jie Guo, 2018. "Interdisciplinarity research based on NSFC-sponsored projects: A case study of mathematics in Chinese universities," PLOS ONE, Public Library of Science, vol. 13(7), pages 1-19, July.
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    6. Erin Leahey & Sondra N. Barringer & Misty Ring-Ramirez, 2019. "Universities’ structural commitment to interdisciplinary research," Scientometrics, Springer;Akadémiai Kiadó, vol. 118(3), pages 891-919, March.

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