As the scientific community globalizes, it is increasingly important to understand the effects of international collaboration on the quality and quantity of research produced. While it is generally assumed that international collaboration enhances the quality of research, this phenomenon is not well examined. Stem cell research is unique in that it is both politically charged and a research area that often generates international collaborations, making it an ideal case through which to examine international collaborations. This study examined the impact of collaboration on publication significance in the United States and the United Kingdom, world leaders in stem cell research with disparate policies. We reviewed publications by U.S. and U.K. authors from 2008, along with their citation rates and the political factors that may have contributed to the number of international collaborations. The data demonstrated that international collaborations significantly increased an article's impact for U.K. and U.S. investigators.
Co-authored by Jingyuan Luo, undergraduate intern, Science and Technology Policy Program, Baker Institute; Jesse M. Flynn, graduate research assistant at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center; and Rachel E. Solnick, undergraduate intern, Science and Technology Policy Program, Baker Institute. Published in PLoS One, March 2011.
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