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Determining inventor status and its effect on knowledge diffusion: A study on nanotechnology literature from China, Russia, and India



In an increasingly global research landscape, it is important to identify the most prolific researchers in various institutions and their influence on the diffusion of knowledge. Knowledge diffusion within institutions is influenced by not just the status of individual researchers but also the collaborative culture that determines status. There are various methods to measure individual status, but few studies have compared them or explored the possible effects of different cultures on the status measures. In this article, we examine knowledge diffusion within science and technology-oriented research organizations. Using social network analysis metrics to measure individual status in large-scale coauthorship networks, we studied an individual's impact on the recombination of knowledge to produce innovation in nanotechnology. Data from the most productive and high-impact institutions in China (Chinese Academy of Sciences), Russia (Russian Academy of Sciences), and India (Indian Institutes of Technology) were used. We found that boundary-spanning individuals influenced knowledge diffusion in all countries. However, our results also indicate that cultural and institutional differences may influence knowledge diffusion.