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Can epidemic models describe the diffusion of topics across disciplines?
journal contributionposted on 2023-06-07, 20:45 authored by Istvan Kiss, Mark Broom, Paul G Craze, Ismael Rafols
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 4-15.5 years support the view that, whilst research topics may grow very quickly, they face difficulties to overcome disciplinary boundaries.
JournalJournal of Informetrics
Department affiliated with
- Biology and Environmental Science Publications
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