Strategies Supporting Heterogeneous Data and Interdisciplinary Collaboration: Towards an Ocean Informatics Environment

K.S. Baker, S.J. Jackson, J.R. Wanetick
Proceedings of the 38th Annual Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences  
This paper considers the elements and challenges of heterogeneous data management and interdisciplinary collaboration, drawing from the literatures on participatory design, computer-supported cooperative work, and science studies to support information design efforts within the rapidly evolving world of large-scale science projects. Certain tensions are embedded in such collaborative projects, being rooted in distinctive disciplinary knowledge interests brought to the table and expressed in
more » ... sionally divergent understandings of project rationale, identity and success. A continuum of strategies exist for dealing with such tensions. In this paper, we discuss two of these: a strategy of 'mindful variety' built around an appreciation of disciplinary, organizational and biographical heterogeneneity of collaborative ventures; and attention to the proliferation of 'boundary objects' and shared languages between and within adjacent communities of practice. These strategies are considered specifically through the lens of an Ocean Informatics Environment (OIE), a concept that joins ocean, information, and social scientists working to construct locally responsive, adaptive and scalable information infrastructures for the practice of ocean science. Our team seeks to design an environment supporting reflexive and heterogeneous data practices responsive to the multiple work worlds of ocean science. We consider the development of an ethic of collaborative care, offered as a working principle for the identification, preservation and bridging of disciplinary difference in the cooperative design of scientific work settings as one of several strategies emerging from ongoing work.
doi:10.1109/hicss.2005.565 dblp:conf/hicss/BakerJW05 fatcat:62rtgv6fzreuzlye2kz2vax7hi