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International collaboration, mobility and team diversity in the life sciences: impact on research performance

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Author(s): F. Barjak | S. Robinson

Journal: Social Geography Discussions
ISSN 1816-1499

Volume: 3;
Issue: 1;
Start page: 121;
Date: 2007;
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ABSTRACT
The combination of knowledge and skills from different backgrounds or research cultures is often considered good for science. This paper describes the extent to which academic research teams in the life sciences draw on knowledge from different research cultures and how this is related to their research performance. We distinguish between international collaboration between research teams and international mobility leading to team diversity, where scientists with a background in another country work as members of a team over time. Our results show that the most successful teams both have a moderate level of team diversity and engage in collaboration activities resulting in joint publications with scientists in other countries. These results have implications for research team management and for research policy, in particular in relation to the mobility of scientists.
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