#change11 Scholars’ network, group, and personal practices

Responding to George V.’s task 4:

Research problem: Researchers’ closed group collaboration and personal desktop practices are largely invisible to, and seem disconnected from, the growing open online sharing world. Are there any hidden influences at work? Research question: Do typical patterns of open online participation experiences and practices also change scholars’ habits within their closed environments? For example: Do the different styles of micro-publications (smaller, more context-immersed, more cross-linked, more “ephemeral”, faster than traditional formats, less focussed on selfcontained, measurable deliverables and more open to gradually emerging artefacts) have a noticeable effect on the way researchers organize their personal and group notes and sketches? Does the contact with blogs and wikis also percolate into the use personal wikis and group blogs? Does the pattern of asynchronous participation complement the closed group patterns of meetings (faster, but less reflective) vs. formalized authoring (lonesome but slow-paced)? Method: Survey both scholars who are engaged or not engaged in open environments, to be interviewd via email OR skype (a single format interview would skew the sample towards more asynchronous or more synchronous preferences, respectively).

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3 Responses to #change11 Scholars’ network, group, and personal practices

  1. Hi Matthias – the question of whether open practices online diffuse to private activities is interesting. I think one point that we need to be mindful about (which relates to the idea of technology vis-a-vis practice) is the question of how have these open practices came about. If openness/sharing/etc exist as mindsets (independent of whether individuals used blogs or wikis for example), then one would expect to see these mindsets in practice in scholarly activity independent of whether it’s happening online (or “in private”). This is why the interviews are important here: because they could help us decipher whether individuals’ activities are reflective of an open ethos regardless of medium/visibility, and independent of use of social technologies. Thank you for posting your thoughts!

  2. x28 says:

    Thanks George for the feedback. I am not sure if open science is more a matter of mindset (or even just a matter of a good idea, as it is currently discussed on the German conference re:publica), or if it is still a matter of the prohibitive pressure described in the famous Harley et al. report, which is only escapable by senior/ truly elite scholars.

  3. That’s a good point, though I’m not arguing that it’s one or the other. Mindsets come about as a result of numerous factors, one of which might be the cultural norms and pressures within which faculty members operate. Cheers!

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