Research Forum Series: Expertise and interactions in online science commenting with Dr Marie-Claire Shanahan
The ever growing accessibility of public read/write internet spaces raises questions about the types of interactions that people, both inside and outside science, have with each other and with science texts. One aspect of those interactions is the claiming and attribution of expertise. Conventional boundaries mark those with scientific credentials as experts and those without as non-experts. Studies of public engagement and advocacy suggest, however, that those outside of science have much to contribute to scientific knowledge and some should rightly be recognized as experts. This includes individuals (e.g., patients and technicians) who have developed in-depth personal expertise that allows them to contribute to building new knowledge. The talk will explore how these attributions play out in open commenting spaces of the science section of a national newspaper, asking specifically: What types of expertise are claimed by commentersand how are those claims made? Further, how do these claims of expertise impact the types of interactions that commentershave with each other?
Date and Time
Thursday, November 25, 2010