Personal Networks and Formal Science, Education and Business Collaboration Networks in Regional Innovation Clusters

Building globally competitive innovation systems that integrate science, education and business sectors is a common policy task for many EU countries. This task, among others, involves creating regional network structures of organizational collaboration across the sectoral boundaries of science, education and business to stimulate innovations. It is expectable that existence of such organizational networks is linked to personal relations that tie members of research, academic and business organizations comprising the basis for trust, information exchange and knowledge creation.

 This project focused on the link between personal and organizational networks in innovation oriented regional clusters and their impact on integration between science, education and business. The study was based on empirical data on maritime cluster in Algarve region, Portugal collected by the project team. Network analysis was applied to multiple networks across the boundaries of science, education and business: organizational collaboration network and personal network between the organizations. On the first step, the existence of a direct relation between personal and organizational network ties in the cluster was checked through conducting QAP correlation procedures applied to different dimensions of interpersonal ties. On the second step, the analysis of organizational network of science, education and business was made, and its result was related to the results of surveys on the perceived level of cross-sectoral integration in the region.

The analysis revealed a relation between personal and organizational cross-boundary networks in general, and in such aspects as communication frequency, intellectual, and emotional influence in particular. The strongest correspondence was found with collaborations between organizational entities and the emotional aspect of personal relations. Considered in a broader literature context, these findings indicate that individuals’ emotional ties with their own locally embedded relational histories may condition the positive impact of spatial localization on organizational network performance. The analysis also concluded that

characteristics of personal networks, such as density, centralization, clustering, and other, may be decisive for the level of science, education and business integration observed in the cluster.


  • Dr. Nikita Basov, St. Petersburg State University
  • Prof. Dr. Vera Minina, St. Petersburg State University



Basov, N., Minina, V (forthcoming). Personal Communication Ties and Organizational Collaborations in Networks of Science, Education and Business. Journal of Business and Technical Communication.