Mobile Scientists and International Networks

33 Pages Posted: 15 Dec 2012  

Giuseppe Scellato

Polytechnic University of Turin - Department of Production Systems and Business Economics (DISPEA)

Chiara Franzoni

Politecnico di Milano - DIG

Paula E. Stephan

Georgia State University - Department of Economics; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

Date Written: December 2012

Abstract

This paper explores the link between mobility and the presence of international research networks. Data come from the GlobSci survey of authors of articles published in 2009 in four fields of science working in sixteen countries. Summary evidence suggests that migration plays an important role in the formation of international networks. Approximately 40 percent of the foreign-born researchers report having kept research links with colleagues in their country of origin. Non-mobile researchers are less likely to collaborate with someone outside their country than are either the foreign born or returnees. When the non-mobile collaborate, their networks span fewer countries. Econometric results are consistent with the hypothesis that internationally mobile researchers contribute significantly to extending the international scope and quality of the research network in destination countries at no detriment to the quality of the research performed. Results also suggest that the "foreign premium" on collaboration propensity is driven in large part by mobile researchers who either trained or worked outside the destination country where they were surveyed in 2011. With but one exception, the mobility findings persist when we estimate models separately for the US, Europe, and other countries.

Suggested Citation

Scellato, Giuseppe and Franzoni, Chiara and Stephan, Paula E., Mobile Scientists and International Networks (December 2012). NBER Working Paper No. w18613. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2189731

Giuseppe Scellato (Contact Author)

Polytechnic University of Turin - Department of Production Systems and Business Economics (DISPEA) ( email )

Corso Duca degli Abruzzi, 24
Torino, 10129
Italy
+39 0115647211 (Phone)
+39 0115647299 (Fax)

Chiara Franzoni

Politecnico di Milano - DIG ( email )

Piazza Leonardo da Vinci
Milan, Milano 20100
Italy

HOME PAGE: http://www.dig.polimi.it/index.php?id=348&tx_wfqbe_pi1[id]=438

Paula E. Stephan

Georgia State University - Department of Economics ( email )

P.O. Box 3992
Atlanta, GA 30302-3992
United States

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) ( email )

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

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