Conference paper Open Access

Steering science through Output Indicators & Data Capitalism

Herb, Ulrich

The paper describes how commercial companies create operating systems with highly integrated services, which scientists use in every phase of their daily work and which by the way produce data about this work. These data, in turn, are processed by the commercial providers and converted into further products, which are now offered to the science bureaucracy as a tool for recruitment and research planning. The structure and marketing of both the tools for scientists and the controlling tools for the administration have features that are widely known from electronic environments (compliance through convenience, vendor-lock-in), but also features that show at the same time elements of the centrally planned economy and (although at first sight incompatible with it) a strong competitive connotation. The presentation also discusses the possible consequences of such a data-driven science control for individual researchers as well as for science as a social enterprise.

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