Epistemic integration of the European Research Area: The shifting geography of the knowledge base of Finnish research, 1995-2010

Hannes Toivanen (Corresponding Author), Arho Suominen

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

    2 Citations (Scopus)


    The integration of national research systems is one of the central objectives of European research policies. Yet the epistemic objectives of this project have been poorly defined, and scant attention has been paid to whether political, social and financial integration of the European Research Area (ERA) is accompanied by epistemic integration. We discuss the conceptual framework and methodological practices to monitor research integration, and conclude that most of them, such as research collaboration, are only partial indicators of it. To augment existing approaches with an analysis of epistemic integration, we analyse the geographical sources of knowledge of Finnish research in the period 1995-2010. We show a broad shift towards a European knowledge base, demonstrating epistemic integration into the ERA, and that Finnish researchers are, paradoxically, sourcing knowledge from an increasingly distributed system of European knowledge hubs. As policy implications, we recommend clarifying the ERA's epistemic objectives and redefining its strategy of 'reducing fragmentation'.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)549-566
    JournalScience and Public Policy
    Issue number4
    Publication statusPublished - 2015
    MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed



    • research integration
    • research collaboration
    • research system
    • European research area
    • Finland
    • knowledge bases

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