Multi- and Cross-Disciplinary Research: Getting Organized

Leaving the starting blocks

This is where it all starts. Today is officially the first day of my fellowship, and I need to get myself into gear and out of those starting blocks. I’ve done cross-disciplinary work before, but here, I’m flying solo – or almost, as I thankfully have a mentor, and an advisory board of 7 to help me steer this project in the right direction.

So. I have 9 months to build a tool that will enable to curate digitally the knowledge creation process that is the act of interpretation of ancient textual artefacts such as Roman writing tablets and cuneiform tablets. I’m not starting entirely from scratch as this project is the natural continuation of the e-Science and Ancient Documents project; however, I’ll be taking a different approach, and attacking the problem by many angles at the same time. That’s where logistics and organization come into play. I have piles of literature to go through, from books on Embodied Cognition to handbooks on Expertise and Expert Performance and on Science and Technology Studies, via articles and manuals on Argumentation Theory, Logics, and Epistemology. All very exciting indeed – if a little intimidating maybe (is that possibly why I’ve just capitalized the names of all those fields)? And I’ll have to go through them one by one. I want to.

Beyond the workplan that I have established in the grant proposal, and that dictates monthly milestones (e.g.: the first month, January 2012, is mostly dedicated to bibliography), I will be using this blog to report and react on my readings. First in the pile, and the subject of my next post, will be an account of my musings through:

The Cambridge Handbook of Expertise and Expert Performance” (2006) K. Anders Ercisson, Neil Charness, Paul J. Feltovich and Robert R. Hoffman (eds). Cambridge University Press.

Ségolène Tarte

I am a senior researcher at the e-Research Centre, University of Oxford, UK, where my research interests revolve around the seamless integration of digital tools within Humanities research, the impact of digital approaches on Humanities methodologies as well as the impact of Humanities methodologies on the development of digital tools. These interests brought three main themes to the fore in my research endeavours: materiality and its relationship to the digital; expertise and the multifarious questions of methodology in the Humanities; and multi/inter-disciplinarity and how that affects research processes. Originally an image processing specialist, my research focus turned to the Digital Humanities, when I started working with Classicists on images of Ancient papyri. The methodologies that I draw upon in my research are inspired and informed by ethnography, philosophy, and the cognitive sciences.

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