Information Access Seminar

The Re-emergence of Scientific Nationalism, The Growth of Supra-Institutional Collaborations, and Implications for Scholarly Communication: Conflicting Trends

Friday, October 16, 2020
3:10 pm to 5:00 pm

Clifford Lynch

The talk “Understanding the ‘Splinternet’” with Nick Merrill, originally scheduled for this time, has been postponed and will be rescheduled for a future date.

There are several important developments currently taking place that have broad implications for higher education, the research enterprise, and scholarly communication (particularly in the sciences. The first might be described as the re-emergence of scientific nationalism, driven largely by government policies and geopolitics; some might characterize it as an aspect of a new cold war. Curiously, memories about what happened during previous outbreaks of scientific nationalism seem to be very poor, and it's worth asking questions about how much we can learn from this history.

A second and contrary trend is based on the pandemic-driven move to virtual environments for classes, seminars (including this one), and scholarly conferences. This is changing both the inter-institutional and international dynamics of scholarly communication (particularly the sharing of early results) and collaboration in ways that are still far from clear, and it remains to be seen how much of this will persist as the pandemic eventually wanes.

I'll discuss both of these trends and how they conflict with each other, and seek seminar participants' views on potential outcomes. Note that these are very preliminary ideas.

Join the online seminar

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Clifford Lynch is the director of the Coalition for Networked Information (CNI) and an adjunct professor at the School of Information. Prior to joining CNI in 1997, Lynch spent eighteen years at the University of California Office of the President, the last ten as director of Library Automation. Lynch is a past president of ASIS&T and a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and the National Information Standards Organization.

Last updated:

October 16, 2020