First Blog Post

“The research enterprise of a leading academic institution is a complex system of human, physical and digital infrastructures that functions to support the production of new knowledge and the advancement and training of research practitioners“

 

Breaking down this statement and paraphrasing it’s meaning, I concluded that more simply stated the process of researching is one that needs a combination of human, physical, and digital systems in order to develop new information that can be used to help  researchers to move forward in their specified field. Reacting to this, I initially agreed with this statement unconditionally.  All three components combined (human, physical, and digital) are necessary to produce knowledge. In any scenario, a person has to use a digital device to either read, discover, or record data in modern times. The process of actually recording, mining, or organizing this data is a physical one.

However, taking a closer look at the statement I began to find factors that I found slightly discomforting. Firstly, I disagree with the term “to support the production of new knowledge.” I do not believe that knowledge is created or manufactured as described, but rather discovered and utilized. We do not have enough evidence to prove that a fact or piece of information has never been discovered or thought about before, as not everyone has necessarily communicated or published their discoveries.

In addition, my last predicament with the statement is how it’s specific to “the research enterprise of a leading academic institution.” I believe that every type of research requires the three components (human, physical, and digital) to discover new knowledge and this process should not be exclusive to institutions of the “academic” nature, which I presume to mean relating to science, education, politics, and other principle funtamentals of study. Research should encapsulate anything from the study of informatics to the principles of human nature to art and design, and beyond. With a few minor adjustments, I would wholeheartedly agree with this statement. Most importantly, I still agree unconditionally to the fact that human, physical, and digital components should be inseperable regarding the discovery of knowledge and research, and this factor can be applied to many more discovery processes in life.

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