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Cancer Epidemiology in Consortia Network Research

Thursday, November 07, 2013 — Poster Session II

12:00 p.m. – 2:00 p.m.

FAES Academic Center (Upper-Level Terrace)




  • EC DeRycke
  • H Cheung
  • B Kaminski
  • M Burgio
  • K Collie
  • M Jue
  • C Johnson
  • MJ Khoury
  • D Seminara


PURPOSE: In Epidemiology, a distinct trend toward collaborative research has led to the formation of large, multi-disciplinary consortia to address questions requiring resources and technologies not attainable by single investigators or institutions. Past analyses of collaboration networks focused on indirect measures such as co-authorship or manuscript citations. Few studies have looked at the membership rosters of collaborating teams and their connectivity to understand how information is disseminated across consortia and scientific fields to yield an extended research network. METHODS: We assembled an investigators database from the membership rosters of 58 cancer epidemiology consortia (CEC) supported by EGRP/NCI. We calculated and graphed the following measures: density of the network, diameter and clustering coefficient. A ‘sunburst’ graph was developed and interrogated to determine areas of intensive collaboration. RESULTS: With calculated density of 0.4, diameter of 4, and clustering coefficient of 0.74, the consortia network exhibits the characteristic of a ‘small-world’ (e.g. compact) network. CONCLUSION: The analysis demonstrates high connectivity among CEC, and provides supportive evidence for the existence of an extended network of consortia in interdisciplinary cancer epidemiology (NOCC). The NOCC infrastructure may provide an efficient framework for the dissemination of knowledge, methodologies, and discoveries to researchers.

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