Sticky Notes on the Wall – Digitalizing and Systematizing Research Workflows

PhD student

Brandon Summer

Thursday 24 Jun 2021, 13:00 - 14:00
Spoken Language
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Contact Jessica Pernozzoli if you would like to receive the Zoom link to this seminar

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Walking into the offices of many PhDs we are often confronted with walls full of sticky notes which mix between time based and topic-based organization structures.

In this Research in Progress seminar, PhD researcher Brandon Sommer will describe how his software came about in an attempt to systematize and organize this sticky note-based structure. Systematizing and organizing is led by the ontological and theoretical logics of the Immanent Causality Morphogenetic Approach (Knio 2020).

About the research

With this idea as the starting point, I began to imagine a digital research environment that could manage heterogenous data and methods that are required over the life course of a project in the Social Sciences and especially those that are interdisciplinary, keeping in mind three interlinking factors:

  1. Organization - To sort and organize the vast amounts of heterogenous data that is necessary to fulfil the methodological requirements of interdisciplinary research both qualitatively and quantitatively.
  2. Integration - It enables the integration of various methods to process heterogeneous data collected from diverse sources. Understanding various contextual aspects from heterogeneous data and various sources requires comprehensive interdisciplinary mixed methods work and it is difficult to reconcile findings of diverse methods using existing software often because the platforms are incompatible.  
  3. Visualization – Ultimately the benefit of the software is the ability to visualize heterogenous data in various ways to get a complete picture of the underlying processes of research. This also offers benefits for teamwork as multiple users can visualize data and debate, discuss and evaluate all aspects of it.

Notably it is a goal of this software to be able to provide tools which do not require advanced programming knowledge to access. It is also the hope that this software will help facilitate collaboration between disparate groups, something which ISS is actively working to achieve.

In this presentation I will provide an overview of the existing development that have been made with the software, including demonstrating various aspects of it. I will also discuss future modules and plans for it.

More information

The Research in Progress seminars are intended to provide an informal venue for presentations of ongoing research by ISS scholars and other scholars from the wider development studies community.