Science of Science Project


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The “Science of Science Project” aims to improve the ways that NESCent promotes synthetic evolutionary biology. The focus of the project is on the behaviors and attitudes of scientists towards collaboration, and how such behavior is changed as a result of NESCent support. The project results will provide NESCent with important information about the value of its programs in building communities and in creating a culture of collaboration.

Professor Jonathon Cummings (Associate Professor of Management, Fuqua School of Business, Duke University) and Chris Shields (Assessment Coordinator, NESCent) will focus on four programs through which participants produce knowledge and build relationships at NESCent and beyond: (1) working groups, (2) catalysis meetings, (3) post-doc and sabbatical visits, and (4) informatics hackathons. They will use observations, interviews, and surveys to provide feedback on the effectiveness of these programs within NESCent.

The Science of Science is a growing field of study, as illustrated by a new program in the National Science Foundation which hopes to “foster the development of the knowledge, theories, data, tools, and human capital needed to cultivate a new Science of Science and Innovation Policy (SciSIP).” SciSIP is an interdisciplinary program that funds research on topics ranging from creativity and innovation in science and engineering to federal and private investments into research and development.

Read examples of Professor Cummings’ research on the Science of Science, or contact him directly.