Networks, Collaboration, and Research in a Non-Western Context: The Role of Technology

Saturday, February 19, 2011: 8:00 AM-9:30 AM
102A (Washington Convention Center )
The diffusion of technology, including the Internet and mobile telephone, is argued to have had significant implications for scientific knowledge production and social interaction more generally. Synchronous and asynchronous communication and access to an array of online information are thought to have fundamentally altered the processes of communication, networking, and publishing, creating a truly global scientific system. Yet, the evidence is mixed. While increases in access to various communication technologies have occurred, their association with various social phenomena suggests unique and contradictory uses of technology based on context and the type of technology. By using panel data, video methodology, and social network analysis, this session will shed light on key questions arising in debates surrounding the diffusion and use of communication technologies to Ghana, Kenya, and several East Asian countries. Specifically, this symposium will address the following questions: Why do scientists in low-income areas have fewer international contacts even with greater access to the Internet? Do gender differences in the research career decline over time with greater Internet use? Do scientific collaboration and networking increase research productivity outside of a Western context? Is the increase in Kenyan and Indian core networks a temporary phenomenon (owing to the adoption of mobile phones), or is communication fundamentally changing in these locations?
B. Paige Miller, University of Wisconsin
Ricardo B. Duque, University of Vienna
Matthew Harsh, Arizona State University
and Ricardo B. Duque, University of Vienna
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