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Big Data and the making of legitimate knowledge claims

Bartlett, Andrew, Lewis, Jamie ORCID:, Reyes-Galindo, Luis and Stephens, Neil 2019. Big Data and the making of legitimate knowledge claims. [Online]. Backchannels: Society for Social Studies of Science. Available at:

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Big Data, both in practice and in promise, is increasingly visible across scientific research. In a recent paper, we compared disciplinary enactments of Big Data and drew out some preliminary arguments on the enactment of Big Data research in the social sciences. Our aim when writing that paper was to bring an empirically-informed STS voice to this discussion, drawing upon our years of research in physics and biology. In doing so, we used a set of STS-inspired ideas, including Collins and Evans’ (2007) concept of the ‘locus of legitimate interpretation’, which describes the social location (communities, expertise, period in time) from which legitimate knowledge claims and judgements of those knowledge claims can be made.

Item Type: Website Content
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Social Sciences (Includes Criminology and Education)
Subjects: H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
Q Science > Q Science (General)
Publisher: Society for Social Studies of Science
Last Modified: 06 May 2023 02:09

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