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Historical Methods 41 (2): 67-78 (2008)

Do ut des (I Give So That You Give Back): Collaboratories as a New Method for Scholarly Communication and Cooperation for Global History

Tine Moor , Jan Zanden
ABSTRACT
With the growing need for large sets of data in historical science, especially now that global history and world history are the objects of increased attention, cooperation among historians has become more useful and necessary. An academic career is often not long enough to gather all the data necessary to support a hypothesis. But researchers are not always willing to share their data because developing data sets requires a great deal of time and labor. The result is that large, highly interesting data sets are often not accessible to interested colleagues. Even if colleagues are able to access the data sets, many data sets prove to be incompatible with other data sets: this is sometimes caused by incompatible data formats or database designs, other times, by a lack of metadata. The authors investigate new methods for scholarly communication and cooperation, paying special attention to collaboratories, or laboratories without walls, and what they can mean for preserving, sharing, and maintaining the quality of large data sets in the humanities and social sciences. Examples from the area of global history illustrate these points. The difficulties of setting up a collaboratory and interaction with other methods of data collection, such as data archives and data availability policy journals, and their benefit the historical sciences, are also discussed. [PUBLICATION ABSTRACT]
ISSN: 01615440     
Notes
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