Use this URL to cite or link to this record in EThOS:
Title: Impacts and benefits of the promotion of UK science, engineering, and technology abroad- why it pays to collaborate at the international level
Author: Harrap, Nicholas Edwin
ISNI:       0000 0004 2679 3109
Awarding Body: The University of Manchester
Current Institution: University of Manchester
Date of Award: 2009
Availability of Full Text:
Access from EThOS:
The purpose of this thesis was to elucidate the socio-economic benefits of international collaboration in scientific research. The proportion of internationally co-authored papers is increasing. This increase in co-authored papers indicates an increase in international collaboration of the actual scientific research being conducted. There are various mechanisms available in the UK which support scientific collaboration with researchers in other countries, however, there is recognition that a more strategic approach is required for international scientific engagement and that there are important social and economic considerations, beyond the benefits to the research process, that governments should consider (GSIF, 2006). This thesis aims to contribute to this debate by analysis of what the benefits are to researchers from collaborating internationally, and also what benefits may be achieved by institutions, and countries, with the focus being on the international engagement of the UK. A literature review was initially conducted. The economic rationales for publicly funded research, particularly the evolutionary rationales, are discussed, before focusing on the issues regarding international collaboration in publicly funded research, and then the techniques and indicators used to study international science. From the findings in the literature review a set of issues were identified and a theoretical framework constructed to analyse. Questionnaires from evaluations of British Council international exchange programmes for researchers were analysed to gain a better understanding of what motivates researchers to collaborate internationally, and what it is that they actually gain from such collaborations. For an understanding of why the government and national agencies support international collaboration, policy officials in the UK Government, UK Research Councils, and non-governmental organisations where interviewed. A case study was undertaken to test the initial findings in more detail. Stem cell research was chosen as a research area to use as a case study as it had many similarities with the UK position overall in scientific research, and further characteristics which made it a suitable case. A questionnaire survey, and follow-up interviews, was conducted with stem cell researchers, based in the UK and abroad. The research has confirmed many of the benefits that researchers have to collaborate internationally which were evident in the literature. These are predominately concerned with accessing knowledge, or equipment which they would not otherwise have access to. How researchers utilise their networks has also been found to be important. Hard economic benefits have been difficult to identify. However, there are benefits that accrue to a country such as awareness and visibility of the research system which can assist in attracting the best students and researchers. Finally there are the benefits that accrue to the individual researchers aggregating to national level benefits.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available