I am preparing my PhD thesis in Information Studies at the University of Lund. My PhD Project "How International is Academic Knowledge Production? Social Sciences and Humanities in Eastern Africa from a European Perspective" approaches to further postcolonial research questions in Information Studies.
To European Social Sciences and Humanities (SSH) researchers, substantial parts of the relevant literature produced worldwide is invisible. For instance, much African literature is neither indexed in any subject databases, nor acquired by European libraries, a gap unacknowledged by the information profession. The professionalisation of African academic publishing is insufficient, due to economic and political reasons. Assumably, researchers from this continent who strive for worldwide recognition of their work, try to get published in media recognised in Europe and other centres of the academic system: media published in the Global North. Many encounter problems of acceptance there, justified first of all with low quality, but also with lacking relevance beyond the local African context, while the main research funders--based overseas--only fund research that addresses development challenges.
This PhD project will ascertain which venues are actually drawn on for publication by SSH researchers in an exemplary region: East Africa. Experimental bibliometric methods applied include the construction of a database, and the determination of academic success for a sample of researchers in terms of Google Scholar citation counts. Further, a sample of articles published in “local” journals is analysed qualitatively to find if they comply to “Western” standards or if the constitution of alternative postcolonial standards can be observed. Finally, it is questioned wether the semantics of a global academic communication system is adequate. Otherwise, how could these near-to-closed regional systems be described?
Between 2011 and 2015, I was employed at the Vienna University's Library, Open Access Office. My main functions were: research to back up strategic decisions, repository management, in the area of overlap to IT, OJS support and advisory services on Open Access publishing.
I completed two M.A. degrees: Sociology and History of Art (2008), and Library and Information Sciences (2014).