ECSCW 2009 pp 243-262 | Cite as

Collaboration in Metagenomics: Sequence Databases and the Organization of Scientific Work

  • Matthew J. BietzEmail author
  • Charlotte P. Lee


In this paper we conduct an ethnographic study of work to explore the interaction between scientific collaboration and computing technologies in the emerging science of metagenomics. In particular, we explore how databases serve to organize scientific collaboration. We find databases existing across scientific communities where scientists have different practices and priorities. We suggest while these databases appear to be boundary objects, they are better understood as boundary negotiating artifacts. Due to rapid scientific and technical innovation the tools, practices, and scientific questions change over the course of merely a few years resulting in challenges for collaboration.


Database System Boundary Object Scientific Question Scientific Collaboration Multiple Database 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag London Limited 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of WashingtonWashingtonUSA

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