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Data Journeys in the Sciences

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  • Open Access
  • © 2020

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  • Facilitates an in-depth understanding of data-intensive methods
  • Is the most advanced survey of data practices across the sciences
  • Presents a ground-breaking and comprehensive framework for data studies
  • Contains original contributions by world-leading science scholars in the respective fields

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About this book

This groundbreaking, open access volume analyses and compares data practices across several fields through the analysis of specific cases of data journeys. It brings together leading scholars in the philosophy, history and social studies of science to achieve two goals: tracking the travel of data across different spaces, times and domains of research practice; and documenting how such journeys affect the use of data as evidence and the knowledge being produced. 

The volume captures the opportunities, challenges and concerns involved in making data move from the sites in which they are originally produced to sites where they can be integrated with other data, analysed and re-used for a variety of purposes. The in-depth study of data journeys provides the necessary ground to examine disciplinary, geographical and historical differences and similarities in data management, processing and interpretation, thus identifying the key conditions of possibility for the widespread data sharing associated with Big and Open Data. 

The chapters are ordered in sections that broadly correspond to different stages of the journeys of data, from their generation to the legitimisation of their use for specific purposes. Additionally, the preface to the volume provides a variety of alternative “roadmaps” aimed to serve the different interests and entry points of readers; and the introduction provides a substantive overview of what data journeys can teach about the methods and epistemology of research.

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Table of contents (21 chapters)

  1. Interlude

Editors and Affiliations

  • Department of Sociology, Philosophy and Anthropology & Exeter Centre for the Study of the Life Sciences (Egenis), University of Exeter, Exeter, UK

    Sabina Leonelli, Niccolò Tempini

  • Alan Turing Institute, London, UK

    Sabina Leonelli, Niccolò Tempini

About the editors

Sabina Leonelli is Professor in Philosophy and History of Science at the University of Exeter, where she co-directs the Centre for the Study of the Life Sciences and leads the data governance strand of the Institute for Data Science and Artificial Intelligence. Her interests include the epistemology, history and social studies of data-intensive science, open science and biological modelling. She is a Turing Fellow, ERC grantee, Editor-in-Chief of History and Philosophy of the Life Sciences, Associate Editor of the Harvard Data Science Review.

Niccolò Tempini is Senior Lecturer in Data Studies at the University of Exeter and a Turing Fellow at the Alan Turing Institute. He researches big data research and digital infrastructures, investigating the specific knowledge production economies, organization forms and data management innovations that these projects engender with a focus in their social and epistemic consequences. His research has been publishedin international journals across science and technology studies, information systems, sociology and philosophy. 

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