3 Comments

  1. Joseph Savirimuthu

    This is a thoughtful and helpful summary of key issues Tim. Will have to go away and reflect on this.
    Joseph

  2. Clare Hooper

    Thank you for this thoughtful post, which I just ran across. A few comments, in no particular order:

    I’m not quite sure what you mean by ‘discipline building’ — would you be able to elaborate?

    I can understand what you mean about the lack of time for discussions, although personally I didn’t feel that discussions were stifled (I guess I’m more used to this style of conference!). Certainly the room was an odd shape… I don’t know if you attended any of the workshops but some of those had *crazy* rooms.

    I like your ideas about platforms for pre-conference collaboration. Indeed, this was preciesly the goal of Web Art and Science Camp, an event I co-organised years ago, was aimed at engaging with and broadening the WebSci and Hypertext communities. I don’t want to lead you astray from your PhD, but perhaps you could chat to your supervisor about the possibility of a future similar event, or — to be way more lightweight — a WAIS-based thing maybe half a year before the WebSci’14 deadline to throw ideas around. It could go in the regular seminar slot.

    What’s the Open Spaces method? Is it related to unconference formats, or birds of a feather sessions?

    Last but not least, I understand why you’re calling for multi-track time but I do strongly disagree on that. The single-track thing is essential to WebSci: sub-fields can develop in coffee sessions, lunch breaks, dinners, workshops, paper collaborations and perhaps these Open Spaces or birds-of-a-feather sessions. As soon as the conference has a multi-track format, it will split along disciplinary lines, and be very difficult indeed to reform. Don’t get me wrong, I understand single-track has disadvantages, but I maintain that it’s important. (Not that I’m in any way involved in any of these decisions, I would add!)

    You’ve clearly thought deeply about all of this. Thanks for the post!

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Open Data in Developing Countries


The focus of my work is currently on the Exploring the Emerging Impacts of Open Data in Developing Countries (ODDC) project with the Web Foundation.

MSc – Open Data & Democracy

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