Objectifs et caractère ambitieux/novateur du projet. Specific aims of the proposal, highlighting the originality and the novelty

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Décrire les objectifs scientifiques/techniques du projet. Présenter l’avancée scientifique attendue. Préciser l’originalité et le caractère ambitieux du projet. Détailler les verrous scientifiques et techniques à lever par la réalisation le projet. Décrire éventuellement le ou les produits finaux développés à l’issue du projet montrant le caractère innovant du projet.

Objectifs scientifiques

Our global scientific goal is to understand the emergence of the communities of practice mediated by the Internet. By understanding an emergence, we mean how they work, what are the conditions for success, how they integrate themselves into the existing relatinships between the actors (firms, public institutions, etc.) existing in the field they are working on.

The originality of our pluridisciplinary approach is twofold:

  • we will focus our analyses on ALL various levels regarding how these communities works and how they manage participation:
    • firstly, we will study the individual level, e.g. participation of individuals, their engagement, roles and and status as well as their evolutions in the communities.

The lock to be raised concerns 1) the analysis of roles in their multidimensional aspect (cf WP2); 2) the diachronic wiew to be constructed on the emergence of roles and their evolutions.

    • secondly, we will study the institutional framework structuring these communities: the rules, but also the institutions (foundations, consortia, etc.) they generate and the role of this framework in the organization and the success of such communities.

More precisely, the lock to be raised is to be able 1) to explicit the rules organizing and the structure of these communities, as they are not always explicit and 2) to define the common rules existing between the various communities. To do so, we will use the results provided by the analytic tools design, but we will also interview the members of the kernel groups managing the communities, the difficulties being to cget contact with them;

    • thirdly, we will regard the relationship of such communities with the existing institutions: organizations (research centres, firms), or rules and juridical institutions, to see how the pre-existing framework may explain the structure of such communities of practice, and in the other hand, how the emergence of such communities may induce changes in their positioning, practices, being at local level (the organization), or at global level (the law).

Here the lock to be raised is not technical but in the fact that representatives of such institutions may be difficult to reach.

  • Our methodology is based on case studies for which analyses will be supported by tools and methods (WP1). The specification, implementation, validation of our methods and tools will be done via their testing on reference corpora. Our position is that online participation takes multiple forms and therefore entails the analysis of multiple, different, but intertwined data sets.

The lock to be raised is to be able to design tools capable to extract information existing in the various communities and in the different tools they use to work (mailing lists, forum, CSV, etc.) and going further than tracking the discussion network (who talks with who) to investigate the discussion topic (who talks with who about what), using extracting tools and lexical analysis. To do so, we will use our knowledge of extracting tools (LORIA) but also of the portfolio of communities analysis tools already developped at URJC (http://libresoft.es/ and http://tools.libresoft.es/).

it sounds clear that the main difficulty of this project is to access to the information (data of the communities, people, etc.) This is the reason why we have selected our case studies not only for the variety of the field covered, but also on our technical and human knowledge of these communities, making us to be able to contact kernel people in each of them, thus allowing us to access to the information searched.