added an update
Methods have been recognised in STS as mattering for a long time. STS ethnographies establish a boundary object with which STS scholars weave a pattern: From such ethnographic accounts we learn that knowledge is produced locally. Ethnography has over the recent decades been highlighted as a key method in STS. And that STS ethnography is specifically shaped by being often configured to consider its forms of collaboration or intervention in the field. This special issue focuses on how methods matter, specifically on how STS ethnographic collaboration and its data are translated into ethnographic writing, or performative of other reality effects. Exploring STS’s own methods-in-action brings to attention the messy landscape of method practice. Our objective in this exploration is to develop a genre of writing about method that fosters response-ability and enables the audience of research output to position themselves between the research materials and practices that were invested into the study. This special issue hopes to contribute to STS engagement with its methods by way of methodography. Methodography serves as a genre of analytic writing, that articulates specificity and scrutinises the situated practices of producing STS knowledge. https://sciencetechnologystudies.journal.fi/article/view/110597/65291
Please also check out Andreas' comment on this public lecture: https://rustlab.ruhr-uni-bochum.de/comment-on-mewes-lippert-data-methods-and-writing-methodographies-of-sts-ethnographic-collaboration-in-practice/
How do we narrate about how we "use" STS for social scientific research? How do we study STS research practices? Do all research practices that involve STS concepts contribute to STS? This text constitutes the afterword to an edited volume that collects contribute to providing answers in the borderlands of these questions. The afterword problematises how we perform reflexivity, how we are (not) analysing STS's own research practices, and how we tell simultaneous stories of what STS a field is or might be. With this problematisation, the text argues for a praxeography of STS, involving methodographic, conceptographic and cartographic analyses. _____________________________________________________________________________________ Published as: Lippert, Ingmar 2020. ‘In, with and of STS’ in: 'Wie forschen mit den "Science and Technology Studies"? Interdisziplinäre Perspektiven', ed. by Wiedmann, Astrid, Katherin Wagenknecht, Philipp Goll and Andreas Wagenknecht. Bielefeld: Transcript Verlag, 301–318. _____________________________________________________________________________________ Post-print available at DOI: https://doi.org/10.31219/osf.io/wbgjs _____________________________________________________________________________________ For the edited volume, see https://www.transcript-verlag.de/978-3-8376-4379-4/wie-forschen-mit-den-science-and-technology-studies/ published October 2020
published at https://easst.net/article/doing-data-methodography-in-and-of-sts/ ___ How does STS ethnography meet what it researches? Not prescriptive methodology-we were interested in methodography, describing and problematising how methods shape data. 2018 saw three research events that focused on data infrastructures and practices in participant observation and in collaborating with other actants in & around the field. With this focus, we turned back and looked at our own research practices. This meant exploring what kind of per-formative relations arise between STS and our topics of research and how these relations were materially and otherwise shaped.
STS scholars frequently engage in collaborative research, as groups of STS scholars as much as in collaborations with colleagues in other fields or non-academics. This SI explores how ethnographic data is generated and transformed for STS analysis in a range of such collaborative contexts. The special issues (SI) aims to lead beyond reflexivity accounts of positionality in STS ethnography and establish a benchmark for the STS ethnographic study of how ethnographic collaboration configures its data. This focus recognises that STS now build on and critically engage with a tradition of carefully scrutinising how scientists pursue their research-in the field, the laboratory, at desks and conferences. Recognising that textbooks' presentations of methods cannot be mirrored in their "applications" or "implementations", STS have questioned how to author STS accounts "after method"; and we may attend to "inventive methods" to pay attention to the various material and semiotic tools and devices (a) that configure research objects and (b) through which the researcher's data are achieved. Enacting our own STS ethnography's data involves a range of performances of "decisions", explicit and implicit assumptions and politico-normative inscriptions, contingent unfoldings and clashes with, potentially unruly, humans and non-humans; we have to "manage" our data as much as our relations within the research assemblages. Interestingly, however, STS have not yet developed a strong tradition for studying how our own collaborations are shaping the generation and transformation of our ethnographic data. The SI focuses on studying the relation between collaboration, ethnography and its data as it is configured in negotiations of different worlds, in collaborations across difference between researchers and other actants within their research assemblages. Who and what is accountable to what else and in what way in assembling researchers, our partners, subjects, objects, our devices and our data? How do these relations shape and effect not only data but also the objects we study? Ethnographically describing and analysing our method's data practices-this we call methodography. We deem developing and showcasing methodography a significant contribution to our field because this promises to equip STS not only with a resource that ethnograpically working STS scholars can well draw on to analyse their own method choices but also because this proposed SI performs exercising a genre, or a language, for presenting and telling such analyses.
I propose we consider as an STS problem precisely our infrastructures of researching, of analysing, evidencing or illustrating our analytical considerations and arguments, that is the STSy dynamics, abilities and disabilities that prefigure the problems STS engages with. In short: if the roundtable asks “what is our problem?”, I respond programmatically: a frightening issue for STS ought to be our collective silence on our own “method assemblages” (Law 2004). In the midst of silence, I propose a description – explications of how we research, not recounting method textbooks or arguments of methodologies, but rather writing up how we proceeded, the paths taken, the troubles experienced, stories of research, methodgraphy.
The workshop focuses on the methods of participant observation and collaboration in and around the field in STS ethnography. By that, we seek to strengthen the capacity for methodography, the empirical study of research methods in practice. Prior to the workshop participants share draft articles on the workshop theme. These are discussed throughout the workshop, commented on and rewritten during a practice unit. All workshop applicants are expected to also submit a revised paper for the organisers' event at the upcoming EASST conference in Lancaster, UK (25-28th July 2018). The revised papers are intended for a future special issue, guest-edited by the workshop organisers.
Introduces the difference between methodology (prescriptive and normative) and methodography (descriptive). Problematises Science and Technology Studies' focus on troubling other field's methods-in-practice, data practices and infrastructures and turns to such material practices in STS's ethnographic work.