jradams1 Annotations

PRACTICES: What “best practices” does the analyst believe make for improved collaboration?

Friday, August 17, 2018 - 5:40pm

Gorman advocates sustained interaction between actors with diverse expertise can lead to a greater capacity to establish a common understanding of a goal.

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DEUTERO: How is this analyst denoting and worrying about collaboration?

Friday, August 17, 2018 - 5:39pm

Gorman is concerned with constructing models to help scholars think about collaboration across domains of expertise in order to facilitate “multidisciplinary collaboration” on large-scale, complex projects like Earth System Engineering Management.

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META: What discourses does the analyst consider/leverage to characterize/theorize collaboration at this research stage? (How) are histories and contextual factors pointed to as shaping the collaborations described here at this research stage?

Thursday, August 16, 2018 - 12:46pm

Gorman uses numerous STS concepts including “black boxes” and “Actor-networks” (Gorman Mehalick 2003), “boundary objects” coming out of social worlds theory and symbolic interactionism (Bowker and Star 1999), “expertise” (Collins and Evans 2002), and “trading zones” (Galison 1997).

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DISCURSIVE RISKS: What are the epistemic assumptions of the analyst of collaboration?

Thursday, August 16, 2018 - 12:45pm

Despite claiming to have been the first to combine Galison’s concept of “trading zone” with that of Star’s “boundary object,” Gorman seems to be privileging a consensus model, which is the exact model that boundary objects were intended to obviate. To what extent can “adversarial” relationships in research be productive?

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EPISTEMIC CULTURES: (How) are epistemic cultures said to shape collaboration at this stage of the research process?

Thursday, August 16, 2018 - 12:43pm

If one considers a domain of “expertise” to be loosely akin to an epistemic culture, Gorman seems to think that actors with diverse expertise are necessary for addressing the complex techno-scientific problems of the contemporary. He seems to be arguing that, through sustained interaction and the “right” attitude, these actors will be able to attain “a common understanding of a goal and collaborate closely” (Gorman 2002, 934).

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MICRO: What did the analyst choose to describe as collaboration?

Thursday, August 16, 2018 - 12:41pm

Gorman constructs a continuum of “collaborativity” (my word) that corresponds with three basic types of trading zones:

“The first is a network controlled by an ´elite in which there really is no trade: those not in the ´elite either obey, or they are ignored. …The second is a boundary-object trading zone, where experts from different fields interact around the development of a technology or system  – like radar or MRI.  Here the system of concern serves as an object that links the participants in the network, but experts from different fields see the boundary object in ways dictated by their expertise. … Contributory expertise brings us to the third kind of trading zone, in which the participants share a common understanding of a goal and collaborate closely. In the parlance of cognitive science, they must share a continually evolving representation of a techno-social system that would normally serve as a boundary object” (Gorman 2002, 934).

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