Can epidemic models describe the diffusion of topics across disciplines?

Kiss, Istvan Z, Broom, Mark, Craze, Paul G and Rafols, Ismael (2010) Can epidemic models describe the diffusion of topics across disciplines? Journal of Informetrics, 4 (1). pp. 74-82. ISSN 1751-1577

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Abstract

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.

Item Type: Article
Schools and Departments: School of Life Sciences > Biology and Environmental Science
Depositing User: Istvan Kiss
Date Deposited: 06 Feb 2012 18:37
Last Modified: 20 Mar 2012 11:48
URI: http://srodev.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/17450
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