Balancing productivity and responsibility. Group leaders’ (e)valuation practices

  • Vera Ulmer (Vortragende*r)

    Aktivität: VorträgeVortragScience to Science


    Group leaders routinely engage in a variety of (e)valuation practices that significantly influence the transformation of research processes into a publication with a corresponding list of authors. Moreover, they can also draw on manifold experiences, in which they or their contribution were evaluated. Hence, their narratives offer valuable insights into the diverse value orders and relational dimensions at work in academia. In the context of publishing and especially when it comes to authorship the significance of their (e)valuation practices is particularly apparent. Group leaders usually have the final say in decisions about who is author on a paper and typically their (e)valuations are also reflected in the order of authors. This in turn can be seen as a materialization of recognition and reward. In some instances, it can also be considered as a materialization of their understanding of the responsibility that comes with their function. Group leaders have to balance a number of issues, e.g., their significant role in the socialization process of PhDs, specifically with regard to authorship and publication practices, while at the same time also having to care for the postdocs for whom a specific authorship position might be decisive for their future career.

    Thus, my presentation will focus on group leaders’ narratives of their various (e)valuation practices in the course of authorship negotiations and publishing processes. In addition, I will also discuss the multiple understandings of responsibility related to those (e)valuation practices since they as group leaders play a key role when it comes to a PhD’s but also a postdoc’s future career in academia. Building on interview data with group leaders from the life sciences and physics, I will outline how their extensive experiences in academia are entangled with and shape their own (e)valuation practices and the related conceptualizations of their responsibility. Thus, I will touch upon how they experienced the transition from first author to last author that usually accompanies a career in science, as their stories provide insights into the meanings they attribute to the various authorship positions. Examining how group leaders, for instance, justify their authorship practices in the light of the neoliberal logic in science, will further allow me to map out which (e)valuation practices related to authorship and publishing group leaders frame as responsible and what various justifications they give. Hence, this presentation will also give insights into how group leaders shape the modes of governance of science through their (e)valuation practices in the context of authorship and publishing.
    Zeitraum1 Sep. 2022
    EreignistitelScientific Authorship and Peer Review: Between a Means of Governance and Structural Meaning?
    OrtBerlin, DeutschlandAuf Karte anzeigen


    • science and technology studies
    • Evaluation Research
    • narrative research
    • science a a culture