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Emerging Research Communities of Practice Versus the Popular Vision of Interdisciplinarity? Insights from Digital Research in the United Kingdom

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journal contribution
posted on 05.04.2019, 11:51 by Y Zhao, P Tsatsou
Objective This article shows how social science and humanities researchers in the United Kingdom who make use of digital tools, resources, and services understand and perceive interdisciplinarity and their related experiences and needs. Methods The study examined 10 cases of U.K.‐based research, two from each of the following social science and humanities disciplines: business/management, education, history, literature, and politics. Data collection employed a qualitative methodology that consisted of nonparticipant observation and semi‐structured interviews. Results The article finds that researchers problematize the meaning and top‐down character of interdisciplinarity and envisage the development of research communities of experience exchange and knowledge sharing that go beyond the imperative of interdisciplinarity. Conclusion The article challenges prevalent assumptions that digital research and interdisciplinarity go hand in hand and that one is a prerequisite for and in need of the other, while it invites institutional and funding bodies to consider working jointly with researchers toward developing the alternative of research communities of practice.

Funding

This work was supported by an EPSRC Community and Culture Network+ award (RS15G0111).

History

Citation

SOCIAL SCIENCE QUARTERLY, 2018, 99 (5), pp. 1733-1749 (17)

Author affiliation

/Organisation/COLLEGE OF SOCIAL SCIENCES, ARTS AND HUMANITIES/Department of Media, Communication and Sociology

Version

AM (Accepted Manuscript)

Published in

SOCIAL SCIENCE QUARTERLY

Publisher

Wiley for Southwestern Social Science Association

issn

0038-4941

eissn

1540-6237

Acceptance date

21/08/2018

Copyright date

2018

Publisher version

https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1111/ssqu.12531

Notes

The file associated with this record is under embargo until 24 months after publication, in accordance with the publisher's self-archiving policy. The full text may be available through the publisher links provided above.

Language

en