Last week I flew over 7,000 miles to present the results of the HASTAC EAGER research project at the 48th Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences (HICSS) held at the Grand Hyatt in the island of Kauai, Hawaii. The paper "Outcompeting Traditional Peers? Scholarly Social Networks and Academic Output" evaluates the interplay between online activity on HASTAC and academic output of HASTAC Scholar, and the relationship between intra- or interdisciplinary background of HASTAC Scholars and their academic output and online activity.
HICSS is a fantastic conference by any measure. Sponsored by the University of Hawaii at Manoa, HICSS sits comfortably at the crossroads between information systems and information technology, including network and communication sciences, but also engineering and business studies. The conference hosted over 800 attendees split across various tracks and minitracks. I mostly followed the minitrack Digital and Social Media: Social Networking and Communities, expertly chaired by Anatoliy Gruzd, Caroline Haythornthwaite, and Karine Nahon. The quality of the papers was high as expected, reflecting the rigorous peer-reviewed process with a 30% acceptance rate. The HICSS proceedings are published by IEEE and are open access and freely available.
During this period I also collaborated with Cornelius Puschmann in a comparative study between HASTAC and the European scholarly blogging platform Hypotheses.org. The results of this research are coming out soon on the open access, freely available PLOS ONE journal. In this follow-up paper we show how the platforms serve different digital humanities communities across various disciplinary contexts, with remarkable local differences in how the emerging field of DH is conceptualized. This is the conclusion of a delightful period of 15 months at HASTAC and Duke University. I took over the NSF EAGER Postdoctoral Fellow from David Sparks, who has gone off to be a statistician for the Boston Celtics after working at HASTAC for several months. During this period I learnt a great deal about social networks, peer-online, strong and weak ties, interdisciplinarity, and all things data related.
The study presented at the 48th HICSS and the forthcoming paper to be published at PLOS ONE were only possible because of the remarkable engagement and patience of HASTAC Scholars, who committed a dedicated amount of their time to fill out the survey and provide critical feedback to the EAGER project. I deeply appreciate their contributions and we thank them for their passion. These papers represent an important milestone to the HASTAC EAGER research, but the project continues throughout 2015. I hope we can continue our discussions and information sharing for the many months and years to come.
This material is based upon work supported by the National Science Foundation under Grant Number 1243622. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.