DATA: How does the analyst point to the data practices in the collaboration? Or to the data produced about the collaboration? Where does that data travel?


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Angela Okune's picture
August 21, 2018

AO: The analysts interestingly reflect very much on their processes and rationales for collaboration but fail to discuss the data and information infrastructures that underly their processes. Where do they store their files? How do they collaboration on a day to day basis (via google docs? Skype? handwritten letters? email?)

James Adams's picture
August 17, 2018

Hegel does not go into detail here, but she does vaguely advocate a sharing of data and preliminary analyses before they have been fully “cooked.”

James Adams's picture
August 16, 2018

In researching a historical case, the authors do acknowledge the character, type, and distribution of the data resources to which they were limited: “The more limited work discussed in this paper is, in part, conditioned by the historical record - for us as scholars, scientific publications are the boundary objects which are also obligatory passage points! Records concerning the entrepreneurs who served as administrators of the museum are kept in the central archives of the university which housed the museum. Records concerning the many other elements of the network of such amateur collectors who contributed specimens to the museum and articles to naturalist society newsletters are not equally centralized. Nevertheless, it is important not to mistake the search heuristic of starting with the centralized records for a theoretical model of the structure of the network itself” (Star and Griesemer 1989, 396).

Angela Okune's picture
August 13, 2018
  • AO: Less about data practices in the collaboration and more about how the research team collected their data of what was going on online: “We are taking screenshots of Facebook pages, Wiki pages and blog posts, and also taking daily notes to summarize ongoing activity. … collecting material samples on the use of online tools not only helps us learn about these tools, but also about the people using them, opening a window to their intentions and aspirations.” I’m a bit unclear on what is “collaborative” here as it largely just seems like the researchers collecting data off of the online site and remotely participating in discussions?

  • The data collected about the online conversations does not appear to have been shared back online or outside of the three-person researcher group.

Angela Okune's picture
August 13, 2018
  • AO: Their data is the email correspondence between Malkki (member of committee) and Cerwonka as she was in Australia for her fieldwork. They used the emails in a class (taught at UCI) and then decided to publish in a book. “The e-mail correspondence itself chronicles how knowl- edge is produced hermeneutically and shows how ethnographic interpreta- tion works in real time and in relation to various pragmatic, social, and eth- ical issues.” (3).

  • AO: ”The next part of this book presents the correspondence between Liisa and myself in chronological order, preceded by my original Fulbright proposal for the research project. We have kept our editing of the correspondence to a bare minimum, treating it as much as possible as a primary document.” (38)

  • AO: Cerwonka writes the intro, citing specific emails as reference (which are published throughout the book. She includes her fulbright proposal and then email correspondence between her and Malkki. They add some “afterthoughts” marked by their initials to some of the correspondences to mark different times and voices. She also includes some of her field notes.

Angela Okune's picture
August 9, 2018
  • AO: The authors point to bad practices with data sharing and “intellectual ownership” in “collaborations” that have created a barrier towards collaborations: “Northern researchers using data sets did not credit the Southern fieldworkers; where problems arose when reports and papers were not shared with the country from which they originated, and where already existing analyses by the original researchers were used but without proper acknowledgement (Rakowski, 1993). (1958).

  • AO: “The data collected during this pilot phase seemed superficial, interviews and group discussions lasting sometimes less than 15 minutes. Limited notes were taken during focus groups. Few changes were made to the final draft of the group and interview schedules and the pilot study report produced remained at a general level, lacking compre- hensiveness and detail.” (1959)

  • AO: Guide- lines for dissemination plans at international, national and sub-national level were initiated by a northern researcher, drafted with a partner from the South, circulated to all partners for comments and feedback, and revised accordingly. “The guidelines state that all data should be available to all partners. Where collaborative work relies on data in a different language, the relevant research partner could be asked to deliver the data analysis, and support the process of interpreta- tion. Agreement for such a process should be sought at the stage where a partner proposes a new paper, and when the involvement of each partner is clarified. In any instance of use of data collected by a second party, the proper crediting of researchers must be ensured (follow- ing international journals’ practice), and co-authorship offered where appropriate. An ‘anticipated publications list’ was distributed to each researcher involved in the study, with a note encouraging researchers to add titles as appropriate. The list was completed according to individuals’ wishes to assume a lead-author or author role. Some of the listed ‘anticipated topics’ were part of the contractual obligations of ART, as co-ordinator, to the funder but additional topics were added, mainly by the Northern researchers.” (1960)

  • AO: (claim that North–South research collaborations tend to have neo-colonialist aspects has perhaps most pertinence when it comes to data proprietorship, and the proper acknowledgement of individuals’ contributions. Northern inputs are often overemphasised, while South- ern contributions are neglected. … It appears that the South is the data collector and the North steals those data and takes advantage of it. It is taken for granted that the North will always be the first author and the South will be fortunate if they manage to.” (1960)