What do new forms of scholarship look like?

A trackback from Jon Becker’s post on curating a review/article on a book has me thinking:

  • What do new forms of scholarship look like?
  • What is the role of the “reviewer” in new forms of scholarship?

More specifically, in terms of research questions and the creative idea that Jon had:

  • Who contributes to “alternative” (or, non-traditional) forms of scholarship? Why do they?
  • What is the perceived benefit of contributing?

Finally, I am wondering: What is the role of the reader? This question is especially intriguing: While research is usually “consumed” (and infrequently responded to), would readers and authors be more inclined to interact if new forms of scholarship provided more social affordances? Or, are we hitting a cultural wall again?

[Photo by watz is licensed under a Creative Commons license]


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  1. Not even sure that much research is “consumed,” frankly. Sitting on a library book shelf is not exactly consumption. Best case, sure, there is a lot of consumption and critique, making the process scientific. But, let’s be honest, that probably happens in less than half (and probably less than 20 percent) of education journals. The only reason people read them is to get cites for their own work or to judge tenure for others. — So I am of the opinion that any additional participation is a bonus over traditional journal publication. In some ways, the market is already determining which research is the most valued because it is published in journals that people actually read. With online scholarship, the market still determines, just in a different form.

    • Thanks for your thoughts Justin. Sure, online vs. sitting-in-a-library matters, but the most influence such a transition would have would be in terms of efficiency for those who already have access. In terms of responding to publications, having conversations, etc, I don’t think the mere transition to an online format (while maintaining the same publication cycle/structures ets) will make much difference. I would love to see research on the topic however :)

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