, Volume 47, Issue 4, pp 441–463

The Typology of the Game that American, British, and Danish Crop and Plant Scientists Play


DOI: 10.1007/s11024-009-9135-1

Cite this article as:
Kamara, M.W. Minerva (2009) 47: 441. doi:10.1007/s11024-009-9135-1


Drawing from contemporary social science studies on the shifting regime of research governance, this paper extends the literature by utilizing a metaphoric image—research is a game—observed in a field engagement with 82 American, British, and Danish crop and plant scientists. It theorizes respondents’ thinking and practices by placing the rules of the research “game” in dynamic and interactive tension between the scientific, social, and political-economic contingencies that generate opportunities or setbacks. Scientists who play the game exploit opportunities and surmount setbacks by adopting strategies and reinventing tactics in order to maximize their winnings and to minimize their losses. Winners become superstars who decree what is open, closed, or doable science for the majority of the scientific community.


Typology of the game of researchGame metaphorMetaphorical theorizationPublic university researchersOnline and popular games

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Communication, Business and Information TechnologiesRoskilde UniversityRoskildeDenmark