Applying the Ecological Shannon’s Diversity Index to Measure Research Collaboration Based On Coauthorship: A Pilot Study

Journal of Scientometric Research,2015,4,3,172-177.
Published:September 2015
Type:Research Article

Ari Voutilainen*, Mari Kangasniemi

Department of Nursing Science, University of Eastern Finland, Kuopio, Finland

Abstract:

The purpose of this study was to test the usefulness of a slightly modified Shannon’s diversity index (H) as a numerical measure of intragroup research collaboration diversity based on coauthorship. Altogether, 527 peer‑reviewed scientific papers by two university departments were used as the study material. Nonrandom rationalized sampling was executed to enable the confirmation of the authors’ affiliations. The smallest unit of collaboration, i.e., a pair of authors, was created by matching every author with each of the coauthors from the same department he or she collaborated with. H was calculated at the department level and compared with the previously published, coauthorship based measures of research collaboration: The collaborative index (CI), degree of collaboration (DC) and collaboration diversity index (CDI). Obviously, H expressed a different aspect of research collaboration than the existing indexes. Compared to CI, DC, and CDI, H revealed novel aspects of collaboration when the abundance of collaboration increased and the distribution of collaborative relations between coauthors moved closer to the uniform distribution at the same time. H can provide additional information about collaborative relationships between researchers based on coauthorship, and it should be considered as a partial indicator of research collaboration.

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Cite this Article

Voutilainen A, Kangasniemi M. Applying the Ecological Shannon’s Diversity Index to Measure Research Collaboration Based On Coauthorship: A Pilot Study. Journal of Scientometric Research. 2015;4(3):172-177. doi:10.4103/2320-0057.174866.