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Network structure of scientific collaborations between China and the EU member states

Author

Listed:
  • Lili Wang

    (UNU-MERIT, Maastricht University)

  • Xianwen Wang

    (Dalian University of Technology)

  • Niels J. Philipsen

    () (Maastricht University
    Erasmus University Rotterdam)

Abstract

Collaborations between China and the European Union (EU) member states involve not only connections between China and individual countries, but also interactions between the different EU member states, the latter of which is due also to the influence exerted by the EU’s integration strategy. The complex linkages between China and the EU28, as well as among the 28 EU member states, are of great importance for studying knowledge flows. Using co-authorship analysis, this study explores the changes of the network structure between 2000 and 2014. Our results show that EU member states with middle- or low- scientific capacities, in particular those who joined the EU after 2000, have been actively reshaping the network of scientific collaborations with China. The linkages between middle- and low- scientific capacity countries have been tremendously strengthened in the later years. The network positional advantage (measured by the degree of betweenness centrality) has shifted from a few dominant nations to a wider range of countries. We also find that countries like Belgium, Sweden and Denmark are in important positions connecting the relatively low-capacity ‘new’ EU member states with China. The ‘new’ EU member states—that have relatively low scientific capacity—intend to cooperate with China jointly with ‘old’ EU member(s).

Suggested Citation

  • Lili Wang & Xianwen Wang & Niels J. Philipsen, 2017. "Network structure of scientific collaborations between China and the EU member states," Scientometrics, Springer;Akadémiai Kiadó, vol. 113(2), pages 765-781, November.
  • Handle: RePEc:spr:scient:v:113:y:2017:i:2:d:10.1007_s11192-017-2488-6
    DOI: 10.1007/s11192-017-2488-6
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