Network analysis of collaboration in networked universities

Jose D. Meisel, Felipe Montes, Angie M. Ramirez, Pablo D. Lemoine, Juan A. Valdivia, Roberto Zarama

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose: In Latin America and the Caribbean, the access of students to higher education has presented an extraordinary growth over the past fifteen years. This rapid growth has presented a challenge for increasing the system resources and capabilities while maintaining its quality. As a result, the networked universities (NUs) organized themselves as a collaborative network, and they have become an interesting model for facing the complexity driven by globalization, rapidly changing technology, dynamic growth of knowledge and highly specialized areas of expertise. In this article, we studied the NU named Red Universitaria Mutis (Red Mutis) with the aim of characterizing the collaboration and integration structure of the network. Design/methodology/approach: Network analytic methods (visual analysis, positional analysis and a stochastic network method) were used to characterize the organizational structure and robustness of the network, and to identify what variables or structural tendencies are related to the likelihood that specific areas of a university would collaborate. Findings: Red Mutis is a good example of regional NUs that could take advantage of the strengths, partnerships, information and knowledge of the regional and international universities that form the network. Analyses showed that Red Mutis has a differentiated structure consisting of academic and non-academic university areas with a vertical coordination (by steering and management) of the different university areas. Originality/value: The methodology could be used as a framework to analyze and strengthen other strategic alliances between universities and as a model for the development of other NU in local and global contexts.

Original languageEnglish
StateAccepted/In press - 2021


  • Collaboration
  • Complex systems
  • Exponential random graph model
  • Inter-organizational relationships
  • Network analysis
  • Networked universities


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