NATURE, PATTERNS AND TRENDS OF RESEARCH COLLABORATION AMONG ACADEMICS IN SELECTED UNIVERSITIES IN NIGERIA AND SOUTH AFRICA
In this article, we argue that research collaboration, as an activity embarked upon by two or more individual researchers to attain common goals, is crucial in determining the breadth and depth of knowledge sharing among academics. The aim of the study was to investigate the nature, patterns and trends of research collaboration among academics in six universities in Nigeria and South Africa between 2003 and 2013. The study determined the level and extent of knowledge sharing among the actors by exploring several aspects of research collaboration. We targeted all the academic staff at the six universities whose publications appeared in the SCOPUS database for the research period. The data was first extracted from SCOPUS by using affiliation search by university for the study period. Through descriptive and evaluative bibliometrics or publication count, domestically and internationally co-authored papers and major collaborating institutions between 2003 and 2013 were determined with the hope of finding co-authorship links for the six universities. The study revealed that research collaboration does occur among academics/researchers in the universities. The South African universities, namely, the University of KwaZulu-Natal (UKZN), Durban University of Technology (DUT) and University of Zululand (UZ) collaborated with each other. However, in Nigeria, there was only one collaborative tie between Ahmadu Bello University (ABU) and the Federal University of Technology (FUT), and no collaboration with Umaru Musa Yarâ€™adua University (UMYU). South Africa also had a higher number of universities among the top 20 universities collaborating between the two countries within the study period.
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