The Duck of Minerva

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Web 2.0 and the IR Profession

August 9, 2010

Dan Drezner and I have a new essay in International Studies Perspectives on the ways in which user-generated technologies are impacting the discipline of IR. Here’s the abstract:

The International Relations (IR) profession has not fully taken stock of the way in which user-driven information technologies—including Blogger, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and Wikipedia—are reshaping our professional activities, our subject matter, and even the constitutive rules of the discipline itself. In this study, we reflect on the ways in which our own roles and identities as IR scholars have evolved since the advent of “Web 2.0”: the second revolution in communications technology that redefined the relationship between producers and consumers of online information. We focus on two types of new media particularly relevant to the practice and the profession of IR: blogs and social networking sites.

Of course if scholarly journal lag-time weren’t what it is we had written this more recently than thirteen months ago, we’d probably have also talked about the data generation possibilities of tools like Wikileaks… more on that here.

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Charli Carpenter is a Professor in the Department of Political Science at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst. She is the author of 'Innocent Women and Children': Gender, Norms and the Protection of Civilians (Ashgate, 2006), Forgetting Children Born of War: Setting the Human Rights
Agenda in Bosnia and Beyond (Columbia, 2010), and ‘Lost’ Causes: Agenda-Setting in Global Issue Networks and the Shaping of Human Security (Cornell, 2014). Her main research interests include national security ethics, the protection of civilians, the laws of war, global agenda-setting, gender and political violence, humanitarian affairs, the role of information technology in human security, and the gap between intentions and outcomes among advocates of human security.