Mitchell Centre Seminar Series
|Starts:||16:00 1 Feb 2017|
|Ends:||17:30 1 Feb 2017|
|What is it:||Seminar|
|Organiser:||School of Social Sciences|
|Who is it for:||University staff, Current University students|
Speaker: Dominika Czerniawska
Title: Structural holes and tie redundancy in scientific exchange networks
On some fundamental level, we can think of scholars as actors possessing, or controlling, various types of resources. Engaging in scientific collaboration requires a lot of time and energy to provide resources needed to reach desired outcome. In principle we should assume that in scientific collaborations scholars combine resources they control and share the outcomes according to agreed terms in contrary to passing resources from one to another. The more diverse resources a scholar is engaging into a collaboration, the more time- and energy-consuming a collaboration becomes. In order to reduce the engagement a scholar may decide to invite an additional collaborator to delegate the responsibility for providing some of the resources directly to herself and to other common collaborators. We argue that such process should lead to higher specialization levels in densely connected subgroups (more redundant ties, less opportunities to bridge structural holes).
The study is based on 40 individual in-depth interviews. Data contains information about collaboration ego networks and resources engaged in collaboration by egos and alters. Resources are coded into several large categories like knowledge and skills, funding, connections. Every ego-alter relation is described with sets of resources engaged by each party. We explain the diversity of resources engaged in different collaborations with the extent of structural redundancy between corresponding collaboration ties. The measure of redundancy is based on the connectivity and embeddedness of alters being compared (geodesic distance and number of shared partners after removing ego-alter ties).
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