Nature cover illustration
A succession of superpowers once dominated the world of science: France, Germany, the United Kingdom and the United States have all had their moments. Today, many countries — prominently China, Brazil and South Korea — have an important place in the research hierarchy. Researchers are much more mobile than in the past and can follow funding and facilities around the world, and the development of supranational collaboration networks is changing the role of national governments and funding agencies. This special issue of Nature looks at how the movement of people and ideas is changing how and where science is done, how it is funded and where current trends will lead.