An (increasingly) visible college: Mapping and strengthening research and innovation networks with open data

Innovation policymakers need timely, detailed data about scientific research trends and networks to monitor their evolution and put in place suitable strategies to support them. We have analysed the Gateway to Research, an open dataset about research funding and university-industry collaborations in the UK in a project to map innovation in Wales. We use supervised learning and Natural Language Processing to improve data coverage and measure activity in research topics, build a recommendation engine to identify new opportunities for collaboration in the Welsh innovation system, and present the results through interactive visualisations. Our results suggest that Wales is becoming more competitive in areas identified as strategic targets by Welsh Government, that its research ecosystem is geographically diversified, and that research collaborations tend to take place between organisations that are geographically close. The data sources and methods we have used in the project can help understand this system better, and support it more effectively.

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