I just came across a website where the author discusses his making of a map showing interactions among scientific researchers worldwide. Following the idea of a Facebook engineer who did his nice map showing how friends on Facebook are connected to one another globally, he did his own map showing scientific collaborations. Lines are drawn between two geographical points where two researchers collaborate in their research. For example, if two scientists jointly publish a paper, and one is in Town A and the other in Town B, then there’s a line linking the two towns together. I downloaded the map from the website and added something of my own to show where Bangkok lies. It turns out that Thai researchers are doing quite well. As expected most collaborating lines are drawn between Bangkok and the West (Europe and North America), and also with Japan. In fact most points outside of Europe, North America and Japan almost always link up to these three major destinations. This means of course that most scientific collaborations in the “rest of the world” are with European, American and Japanese researchers, and it is not surprising that the brightest areas on the map show the US, Europe and Japan. What is lacking are lines connecting dots in the rest of the world itself and not to these big three. This would mean collaborations among researchers in the “rest” themselves, such as, for example, a collaboration between a Thai and a Cambodian researcher. This would be highly beneficial.
So here is the map with my own addition. You can find the real map in the website mentioned above.