How can eResearch contribute to enhance Research?

On Wednesday 13th May 2009, 17:30, I will be speaking at the 4th session of the seminar series e-Research: oportunidades y desafíos para las ciencias sociales (e-Research: opportunities and challenges for social sciences), side by side with Antonio Lafuente.

My part of the seminar will give a practical insight into eResearch — or Enhanced Research —, a concept that meets in the same crossroads as Open Science, Science 2.0 and e-Science do. Unlike what is generally believed, I don’t think about eResearch or Science 2.0 (the two more neighbouring approaches) as opposite to “traditional” science, but as a complement, as a next step, as an enhancement as the name itself implies. Of course, the more an enhancement is mainstreamed, the more it is likely not to enhance but to transform the enhanced subject. Thus, I believe that the Internet brings an inflexion in the practice of Science (and all knowledge-related practices — dozens of them), and that it is only a matter of time to see how new literacies are a must to keep on with such practices.

That said, the presentation begins with a (very) simplified scheme of a researcher’s timeline — again, the extrapolation into other knowledge-based jobs is almost immediate —, from having an idea to seeing it published on a peer reviewed academic journal, and including (some of) the steps the researcher usually goes through.

The timeline is then complemented — enhanced — by some “2.0” practices that can potentially help the researcher (the knowledge worker) in their work. One of the key points to stress here is that for this potential to (a) materialize and (b) have a positive return of investment, it is strictly necessary to mainstream the “2.0” practices in the researcher’s everyday life. At least in a higher degree (e.g. 80%).

For instance: this post is but my own guidelines to impart the seminar, which exist not in paper;the presentation that follows is the one I will be using; and the reference to my bibliographic manager feeds the database with the bibliographies I work with, the online repository of my works and my online CV; hence the only “added” effort is uploading the zipped file of the presentation.

[click to enlarge]

More information

I want to thank Adolfo Estalella, Elisenda Ardèvol and all the Mediacciones research group for the idea of setting up this series of seminars — thanking (or blaming) them for inviting me, this falls on the audience.

NOTE: to comfortably browse the presentation in, open it in a new window, click once in the presentation, and use Page Up and Page Down to move along “slides”.


If you need to cite this article in a formal way (i.e. for bibliographical purposes) I dare suggest:

Peña-López, I. (2009) “How can eResearch contribute to enhance Research?” In ICTlogy, #68, May 2009. Barcelona: ICTlogy.
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