— Cultural Sources of Newness

Archive
Juni 2013 Monthly archive

“Things can work even when they don’t fit together” and “Misunderstanding can contribute to coordination”—these were the first two insights that David Stark shared with us at the workshop that we organized at the WZB June 26-28 in preparation of the book with the working title “Valorizing dissonance. Cultural perspectives on newness.” Where did we—a group of 17 academics from different parts of Europe and North America—go from there? One part of our agenda was to get from dissonance to newness, a concept that was foreign to many of our guests.

Beginning two days of discussions

Beginning two days of discussions

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In the face of over-illuminated night skies researchers join forces. The conference The Bright Side of Night tackled the issue of so-called light pollution on June 20-21 in the  Leibniz Institute for Regional Development and Structural Planning (IRS) in Erkner, close to Berlin. The event was organised by the interdisciplinary research project Loss of the Night and assembled panelists with research backgrounds in political science, history, economics, law and urban planning in front of a just as diverse audience including also physicists, engineers, ecologists and local citizens. Despite the extreme summer heat discussions were lively and the audience attentive. I take it as an indicator for the quality of the event. (Part I)

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Die Referentin Dr. Mareike König vom Deutschen Historischen Institut Paris hat mich überzeugt. Es heißt das Blog – schließlich handelt sich um eine Wortkreuzung aus Web und Log, also um eine Art Internetnotizbuch. Und das macht Sinn, auch wenn Wissenschaftlerinnen und Wissenschaftler die Möglichkeit des öffentlichen Aufschreibens, Dokumentierens und Austauschs im Netz nur zögerlich für ihre Arbeit nutzen (WZB Empirie). Die gepflegte Internetidentität kann heute aber durchaus karriereentscheidend sein, erklärt Mareike König im Rahmen der WZB-Veranstaltung “Forschungsjournale im Netz: neue Publikations- und Kommunikationswege über Twitter, Facebook und Wissenschaftsblogs”. Es folgten hilfreiche Tipps und Infos und zehn gute Gründe für mehr Text.

Blogs

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Flying unprepared to an international conference to which one has been invited as a keynote speaker can be considered arrogant and/or unprofessional. I hope I am neither, but this is what I decided to do last week for the 3rd Participatory Innovation Conference in Lahti, Finland . I had not taken the decision alone: the idea was born out of a conversation with Finnish artist Nanna Hänninen , who had been invited to contribute an artistic response to a selection of papers that had been submitted to the conference. During the conversation we had in my office at the WZB in May about artistic interventions in organizations, we decided to propose to the conference organizers to transform our separate roles into a joint contribution that would combine academic and artistic perspectives. Co-chair Helinä Melkas welcomed our unusual and risky suggestion, which she felt fit well with the theme and nature of the conference: innovation and participation as performance. And I felt that the idea fit well with one of the key findings of my research on artistic interventions in organizations, namely that one of the most valuable contributions that artists bring into organizations is the capacity to engage not-knowing. The conference offered an opportunity for me to shift from writing about the concept to actually trying to do it in partnership with an artist.

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