The project will assimilate multi-disciplinary materials, with network members contributing their extensive local knowledge and respective interests in labour movements, development processes, and political-economic strategy to examine how different types of ideas move and interact in creating science spaces. Case studies will be developed and written within this framework.
The research will incorporate detailed case-studies of the respective science spaces tracing their historical evolution, key development processes, identity and image, and physical form. Relevant policy documents at various governmental scales, and associated marketing and publicity material will be reviewed. Detailed interview-based research will be undertaken with representatives from the science parks, commercial and scientific interests, government officials, and marketing officers, as well as international scientific labour, to draw out varying perceptions, cultures and identities.
Key research emphases include: interacting flows/intersecting scapes, multiple spatial imaginaries, diverse vantage points and perceptions, policy mobilities, physical and cultural hybridity, and new identities/meanings.
The Research Aim is: To describe and explain the diversity of global science spaces as hybrid physical, political-ideological and cultural forms
3 Research Objectives then form the focus for each of our case-studies, together with associated sub-questions:Objective 1. To explain and characterise the physical form of the respective science spaces
- What spatial imaginary has emerged and how was it developed and contested at various spatial scales?
- What is the nature of the development process and how has the science space evolved over time? For example: public/private roles and relations, investment patterns, planning and regulatory processes.
- What physical form does the science space take?
- How have international flows of ideas around architectural form and built environment development processes impacted on the space? How have global flows here found distinctive national and local expression?
- What is the relationship between the development of the particular science space and broader patterns of urbanization in the relevant national context?
- Has the science space been actively cultivated as an explicit political and diplomatic project?
- How has the site been deployed in terms of national-regional political discourse and national-regional level media/marketing/publicity?
- Is the space funded as a national state-project?
- What is the prevailing image/identity of the site?
- What role does the physical environment play in constructing and projecting an image of the site?
- What are the patterns of ownership and investment? To what extent is international ownership and investment evident?
- How do science spaces exert significant symbolic/soft power at a global scale? Is it possible to make some judgement on the role and contribution of the space in projecting soft power?
- How does international scientific labour specifically perceive the respective spatial imaginaries and built forms in their host spaces?
- Do the perceptions of international labour accord with the image/identity of the site projected in national discourse or the perceptions of national/regional/local actors?
- What kinds of identities do expatriate scientists construct? How and why are they constructed in this way? To what extent can we identify cultural hybridity, and new identities/meanings?
- To what extent is the experience of scientific work differentiated amongst diverse global science space contexts?
Quote from Dave Valler on our overall objective…
…the objective of the network is to draw from a mix of methodological approaches, wide-ranging types of data, detailed knowledge of global comparative case studies, and our diverse individual biographies to exploit a basic insight: that individuals and interests see and experience global science spaces from very different vantage points. This conceptual starting point emphasises that such spaces embody multiple imaginaries, ranging from world-system structures to everyday patterns of life and experience. A synthesis amongst the three dimensions will therefore focus on (i) how science spaces have been imagined and realised by a range of interests in different global-regional contexts (ii) inter-relations between the political construction of science spaces and their physical built form, and (iii) the experience and meaning of these spaces for international labour. These themes will be the focus for extensions to existing case study analysis, building on the detailed local knowledge of network participants.