dinsdag 20 februari 2007

Master Thesis

Titel: Van Utopie naar Realiteit - Een Analyse van Kennisnet's Open Service en de Kloof tussen Theorie en Praktijk

Kernwoorden: Kennisnet | Open Service | Online Community's | Online Participatie | Kennisruimte | Media: Kennis en Vaardigheden

Tineke Pauw
Master Nieuwe Media en Digitale Cultuur
Januari 2007

Download thesis [.pdf, 486 kB]

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I'll post a link where you can download my thesis. Mind, it's in Dutch. And in all probability I won't translate it... Translating 16000+ words is a bit much.

But, to give somekind of description on my research for my Master thesis:
I wrote about my experiences at my internship (at the public ICT support organisation established by and for education in The Netherlands, Stichting Kennisnet Ict op school), where I tried to apply "open service" to several projects. Open Service is a Kennisnet-concept, which is mostly about getting consumers (teachers, pupils, students, and other Kennisnet users) to have more direct influence on the products and services, to give every consumer equal chances for participation, and to have equality between the producer (Kennisnet) and the consumers.
I talked about the practical problems that I ran into and compared them to some selected theories, namely: Pierre Lévy's collective intelligence and knowledge space, Henry Jenkins' participatory culture, and the debate around communities and online networks.
On a metalevel, my conlusion is that the theories are too general. They're generalizing people, their skills (like ICT-skills and communication-skills) and knowledge by presupposing that everyone have the skills and knowledge necessary to participate fully on the Internet. Also technology itself can throw in some barriers. Also, research shouldn't only be focused on the ideal of virtual communities. There are quite a few online networks and other social contacts that don't fit into that ideal community-box. Also, the word "network" doesn't quite suffice; perhaps new words and concepts should be found to describe those online social contacts and networks that aren't communities.

For me, it was interesting to try and apply those theories in "the real world". Sometimes it helped to improve online services and products, and sometimes it didn't work out due to all kinds of barriers. It was an interesting experience that taught me a lot.

Anyways, here's the link to download my thesis (remember, it's in Dutch):

Download thesis [.pdf, 486 kB]

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