Our research investigates how scientific knowledge is produced in inter- and transdisciplinary settings, how it is publicly communicated, and what role it plays in contexts of application such as in scientific policy advice. We study these questions in a set of case studies to contribute to a key question in Science Studies, namely, how boundaries are negotiated between science and society. Current research focusses mainly on the field of climate science.
The research programme includes conceptual and empirical work. Conceptually, the work is guided by general social theory ideas of functional differentiation at the level of society resulting in anything from tensions to couplings between different social worlds such as science, media, politics, law and arts. We start from the proposition that this leads to mutual and non-linear dynamics between the social worlds. We combine this theory of society perspective with organisational theory, interactionist sociology, historical sociology, the sociology and political science of social movements, the public arenas approach to social problems and concepts from Science and Technology Studies (STS).
Methodologically, our research is in the tradition of interpretative social science including qualitative interviews, document analysis and ethnography as well as historical analysis. In collaborative projects, we also employ multi-method approaches that combine qualitative methods with surveys, scientometric methods and ubiquitous computing.