Friedrich Kittler was one of the world’s most influential, provocative and misunderstood media theorists. His work spans analyses of historical ‘discourse networks’ inspired by French poststructuralism, influential theorisations of new media, through to musings on music and mathematics. Niall Flynn notes how Kittler himself defied familiar understandings of interdisciplinary research and challenges established research models. The best essays in this volume, Flynn […]
Incentives for open science: New prizes to encourage research integrity and transparency in social science.
The high-profile political science study on same-sex marriage views in the U.S., now determined to be fraudulent, is the latest case exposing the need for incentive structures that make academic research open, transparent, and replicable. The U.S. study has been retracted, largely thanks to the discovery of inconsistencies in the data by an outside group. The academic community must […]
Towards ‘Health Information for All’: Medical content on Wikipedia received 6.5 billion page views in 2013.
The medical content in Wikipedia receives substantial online traffic, links to a great body of academic scholarship and presents a massive opportunity for health care information. James Heilman and Andrew West present their findings on the wider editorial landscape looking to improving the quality and impact of medical content on the web. Data points to the enormous potential of these efforts, and further analysis […]
“Who would want to live in a world made up entirely of scientists?” Australia’s Chief Scientist calls for cooperation
Reporting on a recent workshop where Australia’s Chief Scientist Professor Ian Chubb outlined the key priorities for research and funding, Jacqui Hoepner discusses the long-term future of Australian research. Professor Chubb stressed the importance of having a broader national conversation about how they will achieve societal change and how researchers should work to meet those ends.
A few weeks ago Australia’s […]
The Future of Knowledge Sharing for Development in a Digital Age: Delivering an open and fair digital society.
Rachel Playforth introduces a new report on how digital technologies might contribute to or damage development agendas in the coming years. Through scenario development planning, the project investigated the landscape of developing countries in the digital age and how practitioners and policymakers might best respond. None of the scenarios below represents the most desirable outcome, but by working backwards from an ideal […]
Why perpetuate a 300-year-old anachronism? Reincarnating the research article into a ‘living document’.
Online publication provides us with new freedom to update, amend and extend the research article as we know it. Daniel Shanahan presents a vision of the evolution of the article beyond the limits of the printed page. Creating a living document for a single research project, updated in real time, would lead to it being evaluated based on the […]
The Porous University: Impact is not some added extra of academic life, but lies at the core of what we do.
The current university set up has led to a deep malaise. The culture of retreat and lack of an inclusive commitment has fed public perceptions that universities are unapproachable. Michael Stewart argues that thinking more creatively about impact and problem-based learning could help overcome these failures. The management terminology is brittle and ugly, but all impact means is that we are engaged with […]
Empirical analysis reveals significant discrepancy between journal reputation and perceived relevance in economics.
Using survey data on the evaluations of 150 economics journals, a recent study explored the relationship between economics journals’ reputation and perceived relevance amongst economists working in the field. Justus Haucap shares some of the headline findings from the analysis based on the survey data. The findings suggest that a journal’s relevance is driven by average article quality, while reputation depends […]
In this volume, seventeen distinguished anthropologists draw on personal and professional histories to describe avenues to mutuality through collaborative fieldwork, community-based projects and consultations, advocacy, and museum exhibits. Sander Hölsgens thinks that although this book might not be all that accessible for those outside the field of anthropology, its value is located on the level of the anecdote: what does the notion […]
Opening the black box of clinical decision making: Interpretation is a central feature in evidence-based medicine.
How can different knowledge components, such as scientific evidence, clinical expertise, and patient preference, within the evidence-based medicine (EBM) framework be combined? Do trustworthy decisions fall out as clear-cut conclusions as part of an algorithm when an EBM approach is used? Eivind Engebretsen, Nina Køpke Vøllestad, Astrid Klopstad Wahl, Hilde Stendal Robinson and Kristin Heggen use the four stages of knowing presented by […]
Aiming to redefine the core issues at the heart of feminist activism in a development context, Feminist Activism, Women’s Rights, and Legal Reform brings together cases from across the developing world in an effort to analyse the successes, and failures, of the evolution and implementation of new laws designed to protect women and girls. Katherine Williams summarises three fascinating chapters.
This review originally appeared on […]
Mobile website or an app? Looking ahead to strategic mobile library development in Higher Education.
With more and more users accessing library websites via smartphones, what is the best mobile platform to facilitate access to the diverse collections? Ros Pan and Josh Clark report back from an extensive study into library website development. They conclude that at present time, the best strategic solution is a hybrid approach where a platform-independent web app is created that can […]
The progressive ideals behind Open Government Data are being used to further interests of the neoliberal state.
A range of social actors are pushing for Open Government Data, from open research advocates to the private sector, resulting in a complex and contested landscape. Jo Bates examines recent developments on how the government have been able to use the rhetoric of transparency for political ends, paving the way for the implementation of long term austerity. She argues we cannot make assumptions about […]
Book Review: The Unruly PhD: Doubts, Detours, Departures, and Other Success Stories by Rebecca Peabody
This book is a useful and comforting resource for anyone interested in understanding how individuals get through their PhD journeys and negotiate their career choices. Most importantly, this book reminds us that there is a greater world beyond the academia, and that it is OK to pursue alternative paths, writes Sin Yee Koh.
This review originally appeared on LSE Review of […]
The heart of the debate on open access to research is over licencing. A sharp schism has emerged between those who think the no restrictions CC-BY licence is indispensable, and those who think other licences such as the non-commercial CC-BY-NC or non-derivative CC-BY-ND, is good enough. In the software world, licensing was a similar sticking point between free software and open source advocates. […]
Across the globe, there are more than four thousand policy institutes or think tanks that research or advocate for economic and social development. Yet the relationship between these organizations and the policies they influence is not well understood. How Think Tanks Shape Social Development Policies examines case studies drawn from a range of political and economic systems worldwide to provide a […]
In a study of over 500 four year post-secondary institutions in all fifty US states from 1993-2010, Amanda Rutherford and Thomas Rabovsky find that current performance funding policies are not associated with higher levels of student performance and that these policies may in fact contribute to lower performance over a longer period of time. However, more recent policies linked to institutional base funding may produce […]
‘Robbins Rebooted’ details Labour’s approach to boosting technical skills and regional growth through higher education
Shadow Higher Education Minister Liam Byrne MP has released Robbins Rebooted, a pamphlet on the importance of higher education to the UK’s national life and economic future. Nick Hillman, Director of the Higher Education Policy Institute (HEPI) welcomes the pamphlet as a clear articulation of Labour’s vision for maintaining a world-class higher education sector, even if ambiguity remains over hard figures and clear […]