19.215 how far collaboration?

From: Humanist Discussion Group (by way of Willard McCarty willard.mccarty_at_kcl.ac.uk>
Date: Thu, 18 Aug 2005 11:51:38 +0100

               Humanist Discussion Group, Vol. 19, No. 215.
       Centre for Computing in the Humanities, King's College London
                     Submit to: humanist_at_princeton.edu

         Date: Thu, 18 Aug 2005 11:42:41 +0100
         From: Willard McCarty <willard.mccarty_at_kcl.ac.uk>
         Subject: how far collaboration?

I'd like to sample once again, in a somewhat different way, what
members of Humanist think about collaborative work.

It seems quite clear from our experience here in London that
collaborative teams, semi-hierarchically structured, work very well
in the development of scholarly software tools, and that the
experience which comes out of such collaboration can result in a wide
range of published work, from both technical practitioners and
scholars, in the form of software and discursive prose. This comes as
no surprise to anyone here, I'd suppose. It's been clear for many
decades reaching beyond the century-mark that scholarly teams, in
quite traditional academic research projects, have produced some of
the most valuable scholarship we have. Those that have worked on such
projects in the past may wish that greater social equality had
obtained -- equal recognition for equal work -- and so may wish to
comment on the meaning of "collaboration" under such circumstances.
But broadly speaking, team-work does work well, yes?

Being to some degree care-less I've used Humanist for some time (as I
suspect others have too) openly to aid not just my research but also
the writing, trying out many half-formed ideas in order to engage the
help of others in improving them. At times it's seemed almost like
collaborative thinking and writing. But how promising is this
practice? Why aren't more people doing it? Are there perils I have not spotted?



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Dr Willard McCarty | Senior Lecturer | Centre for Computing in the
Humanities | King's College London | Kay House, 7 Arundel Street |
London WC2R 3DX | U.K. | +44 (0)20 7848-2784 fax: -2980 ||
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Received on Thu Aug 18 2005 - 06:59:10 EDT

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