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Socio-material
methods &
making a mess of
a PhD?
Pete Evans
30 August 2016
 
Overview
Introduction to the study
Research site and matters of interest
Paradigm in to design
Methods repertiore
 
Twitter discussion events
• Hosted on Twitter
• Synchronous
• Organised through hashtags (#) aggregating
contributions & interactions (Bruns & Stieglitz,
2013)
• Approximately 750 regular leisure & professional
discussion events: #imcchat (integrated marketing
communication); #innochat (innovation); #lrnchat
(corporate and academic learning); #PhDChat;
#ECRChat (early career researchers); #talentnet
(recruitment industry) (see Gnosis Media Group,
n.d.).
 
Matters of interest
1.How the common professional domain of
HRD is constituted
2.How online community is enacted
3.How professional learning and knowledge
sharing is performed
 
 
If this is an awful
mess … then would
something less messy
make a mess of
describing it?
Law (2004, p1)
 
Doing socio-material
Images: (i) froBy Credited to Francesco di Antonio del Chierico - Ptolemy's Geography (Harleian MS 7182, ff 58–59), Public Domain,
https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=193697m Paul Randall, 2009; (ii) Rainbow brainwaves by Herman Cruz
In practice research needs to be
messy and heterogeneous. It
needs to be mess and
heterogeneous because that is the
way it – research – actually is. And
also, and more importantly, it
needs to be messy because that is
the way the largest part of the
world is: messy, unknowable in a
regular and routinized way.
Unknowable, therefore, in ways
that are definite or coherent.
(Law , 2007, p596-7)
 
Image from Paul Randall, 2009
Repertoire of methods
Method assemblage
…seeks to compel, relate, or explore,
understanding the inherent open-endedness of
this act in contextual space and time. The key
would be to add transparency, acknowledging
that on is engaging in sense-making rather than
discovering or finding or attempting to classify in
a reductionist sense (Markham 2013)
A repertoire of methods?
Discourse Analysis
Tracing the
emergence of
orders of discourse:
styles, genres and
discourses using
NVivo
Twitter Event data
Twitter data collected using TweetArchivist
and data from the event websphere
captured in PDF
 
But …
As a research term, ‘data’ has been a problem for
qualitative researchers for some decades now,
not least because the term is — in most common
usage — associated with some thing that one
gathers, hence is a priori and collectable. Data
are potentially informational, yes, but as
operationalized in most of the social or natural
sciences, function fundamentally as discrete
objects that can be located in time and space.
The problem with this conceptualization is that it
remains categorically different from — and in a
sense opposed to — the very idea of process.
From a qualitative perspective, ‘data’ poorly
capture the sensation of a conversation or a
moment in context.
(Markham 2013: 1)
 
Matters of interest
My central argument is to understand the Twitter
chat events as heterotopic socio-material
assemblages. So the RQs become: how are
heterotopic assemblages manifested in:
1.How the common professional domain of HRD is
constituted
2.How online community is enacted
3.How professional learning and knowledge sharing
is performed
By DuMont Television/Rosen Studios, New York-photographer.Uploaded by We hope at en.wikipedia, Public Domain.
 
References
Beighton, C. (2013). Assessing the mess: challenges to assemblage theory and teacher education.
International Journal of Qualitative Studies in Education, 26 (March 2015), 1293–1308.
DeLanda, M. (2006). A New Philosophy of Society: Assemblage Theory and Social Complexity. London:
Bloomsbury.
Geiger, D. (2009), Revisiting the Concept of Practice: Toward an Argumentative Understanding of Practicing.
Management Learning, 40, 129–144.
Gherardi, S. (2000). Practice-based Theorizing on Learning and Knowing in Organizations. Organization,
7(2), 211–223.
Latour, B. (2005). Reassembling the Social - An Introduction to Actor-Network-Theory. Oxford: Oxford
University Press.
Law, J. (2004). After Method: Mess in Social Science Research. Abingdon: Routledge.
Markham, A. N. (2013). Undermining ‘data’: A critical examination of a core term in scientific inquiry. First
Monday. 18 (10).
Markham, A.N. and Lindgren, S. (2012). From Object to Flow: Network sensibility, symbolic interactionism
and social media. Studies in Symbolic Interaction
Miettinen, R. (1997). The Concept of Activity in the Analysis of Heterogeneous Networks in Innovation
Processes. In CSST Workshop: Actor Network Theory and After.
Nicolini, D., Gherardi, S., & Yanow, D. (2003). Knowing in practice. Armonk, NY: ME Sharpe.
Pickering, A. (1992). Science as Practice and Culture. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.
Roger, R. (ed). (2011). An introduction to critical discourse analysis in education. 2nd
edition. London: Sage

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Understanding Twitter Chats as Heterotopic Socio-Material Assemblages

  • 1. Socio-material methods & making a mess of a PhD? Pete Evans 30 August 2016
  • 2.   Overview Introduction to the study Research site and matters of interest Paradigm in to design Methods repertiore
  • 3.   Twitter discussion events • Hosted on Twitter • Synchronous • Organised through hashtags (#) aggregating contributions & interactions (Bruns & Stieglitz, 2013) • Approximately 750 regular leisure & professional discussion events: #imcchat (integrated marketing communication); #innochat (innovation); #lrnchat (corporate and academic learning); #PhDChat; #ECRChat (early career researchers); #talentnet (recruitment industry) (see Gnosis Media Group, n.d.).
  • 4.   Matters of interest 1.How the common professional domain of HRD is constituted 2.How online community is enacted 3.How professional learning and knowledge sharing is performed
  • 5.  
  • 6.   If this is an awful mess … then would something less messy make a mess of describing it? Law (2004, p1)
  • 7.
  • 8.   Doing socio-material Images: (i) froBy Credited to Francesco di Antonio del Chierico - Ptolemy's Geography (Harleian MS 7182, ff 58–59), Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=193697m Paul Randall, 2009; (ii) Rainbow brainwaves by Herman Cruz In practice research needs to be messy and heterogeneous. It needs to be mess and heterogeneous because that is the way it – research – actually is. And also, and more importantly, it needs to be messy because that is the way the largest part of the world is: messy, unknowable in a regular and routinized way. Unknowable, therefore, in ways that are definite or coherent. (Law , 2007, p596-7)
  • 9.   Image from Paul Randall, 2009 Repertoire of methods Method assemblage …seeks to compel, relate, or explore, understanding the inherent open-endedness of this act in contextual space and time. The key would be to add transparency, acknowledging that on is engaging in sense-making rather than discovering or finding or attempting to classify in a reductionist sense (Markham 2013)
  • 10. A repertoire of methods? Discourse Analysis Tracing the emergence of orders of discourse: styles, genres and discourses using NVivo Twitter Event data Twitter data collected using TweetArchivist and data from the event websphere captured in PDF
  • 11.   But … As a research term, ‘data’ has been a problem for qualitative researchers for some decades now, not least because the term is — in most common usage — associated with some thing that one gathers, hence is a priori and collectable. Data are potentially informational, yes, but as operationalized in most of the social or natural sciences, function fundamentally as discrete objects that can be located in time and space. The problem with this conceptualization is that it remains categorically different from — and in a sense opposed to — the very idea of process. From a qualitative perspective, ‘data’ poorly capture the sensation of a conversation or a moment in context. (Markham 2013: 1)
  • 12.   Matters of interest My central argument is to understand the Twitter chat events as heterotopic socio-material assemblages. So the RQs become: how are heterotopic assemblages manifested in: 1.How the common professional domain of HRD is constituted 2.How online community is enacted 3.How professional learning and knowledge sharing is performed
  • 13. By DuMont Television/Rosen Studios, New York-photographer.Uploaded by We hope at en.wikipedia, Public Domain.
  • 14.   References Beighton, C. (2013). Assessing the mess: challenges to assemblage theory and teacher education. International Journal of Qualitative Studies in Education, 26 (March 2015), 1293–1308. DeLanda, M. (2006). A New Philosophy of Society: Assemblage Theory and Social Complexity. London: Bloomsbury. Geiger, D. (2009), Revisiting the Concept of Practice: Toward an Argumentative Understanding of Practicing. Management Learning, 40, 129–144. Gherardi, S. (2000). Practice-based Theorizing on Learning and Knowing in Organizations. Organization, 7(2), 211–223. Latour, B. (2005). Reassembling the Social - An Introduction to Actor-Network-Theory. Oxford: Oxford University Press. Law, J. (2004). After Method: Mess in Social Science Research. Abingdon: Routledge. Markham, A. N. (2013). Undermining ‘data’: A critical examination of a core term in scientific inquiry. First Monday. 18 (10). Markham, A.N. and Lindgren, S. (2012). From Object to Flow: Network sensibility, symbolic interactionism and social media. Studies in Symbolic Interaction Miettinen, R. (1997). The Concept of Activity in the Analysis of Heterogeneous Networks in Innovation Processes. In CSST Workshop: Actor Network Theory and After. Nicolini, D., Gherardi, S., & Yanow, D. (2003). Knowing in practice. Armonk, NY: ME Sharpe. Pickering, A. (1992). Science as Practice and Culture. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. Roger, R. (ed). (2011). An introduction to critical discourse analysis in education. 2nd edition. London: Sage