1. Why are you interested in supporting OCSDNet?

I became interested in supporting the OCSDNet because I think it is an attractive endeavor. It’s one that invites a broad variety of reflection and analysis of the issues that are of clear concern to me. Among them is the private and public question. There is a hidden meaning associated with the word “open”, because of the assumption that science before was not really open and there were different barriers. We know there always have been barriers. But is “open” science surely so open? Can’t we think of open science without necessarily having to consider the technological gadgets usually associated with it? So, this notion is really intriguing and fascinating: the emphasis on social actors, actions, strategies, motivations; the interest of institutional and social constraints; the possibility of overcoming those constraints; richness of thinking, knowledge sharing, networking activities. It’s not something that comes from the top down. It’s the grassroots who are actually doing the research.

Science is increasingly a collective endeavor and we tend to forget about that. I’m rather interested in the possibility of collaborative science amongst individuals motivated by curiosity, by the idea of sharing knowledge, insights and intuitions. I wish to understand and explore the principles and dynamics of collaboration unencumbered by dominant top-down categorizations, hierarchies, disciplinary authority structures; to analyze the conditions enabling research that may contribute to produce more universal science in a more equitable, global society. I am no longer convinced that development goals in the Global South are independent of what happens to science in general. I believe that open, collaborative science would be a way to transform science in society as a whole, not just to solve the problems of the Global South.

  1. What skills, insights and experiences do you bring to this initiative?

Well, I am a social scientist, and a social anthropologist by training. I have always been interested in the human aspiration to share equally, despite the continuous production and reproduction of inequalities and secrecy in the world.

I have done research in many different contexts on issues dealing with inequality and hierarchy, respect and disrespect, private/public boundaries in science, and science publishing and evaluation. I have found myself in places where cooperation  programs were created and assessed. I hope to be helpful to this discussion of infrastructural transformation in scientific research, the assessment of different schemes, and perhaps policy recommendations. I think that I may be helpful with regards to considerations about the system rather than the technologies to be used. This is a collective enterprise, and I am going to learn a lot.

  1.     How do you think that your own work will benefit from being involved with OCSDNet?

I think that I will benefit greatly from this initiative, because it is a learning experience for all. Perhaps this is the idea. Being from the South, I can learn together with others that also come from the Global South and well-meaning people from the Global North about these new tools and arrangements. I like to see open, collaborative science as a complex socio-technological system that is much more than a collection of mechanisms like open source, open access, open educational resources, and open data.

I am concerned with the unintended outcomes and potentially negative impacts brought about by such open practices and network design. I think I would also like to explore more the institutional infrastructure that would enable a future science that would be much more collaborative without fragmentation between Global North and Global South. This is an initiative for the Global South, which is good because in the end we’re always being forgotten, but still it cannot be a solution only for the Global South because otherwise it’s not going to be a solution at all. I’m exploring the question of what is the state of open science, particularly that of open social science in the world at large, not just in the Global South. So given the new platforms and arrangements, I’m curious in the tracking of usage and impact based on different frameworks that are found in different locations. There are people that I work with and their work is invisible. I hope that I’ll be able to end up knowing better or understanding what is involved in this.


Hebe’s publications:





To access the Journal of Industry & Higher Education, where Hebe sits on the Editorial Advisory Board: