[OSM-talk] OSM and science

Frederik Ramm frederik at remote.org
Thu Aug 24 18:16:47 UTC 2017


   commendable initiative.

On 08/24/2017 06:54 PM, joost schouppe wrote:
> Together, we outlined some very basic ideas about what we think we could
> do to help foster closer relations, and published them on my OSM diary:

I'm still fond of this 2011 advice for scientists by Muki Haklay:


Quoting from that:

Rule 1: do some mapping
Rule 2: read (books, wiki, blog, mailing lists)
Rule 3: explore the data, then talk with someone in the community to
check that you've got it right!
Rule 4: put outputs in open access
Rule 5: publish and share data you have processed
Rule 6: be a "critical friend" to OSM
Rule 7: teach

This advice is often ignored. I have a feeling that there might be a
fundamental problem because scientists - especially junior ones - often
believe that if you interact too much with the object of your research,
you might lose objectivity and not be taken seriously. Taken to the
extreme, this would mean that you can't be a mapper if you want to
publish meaningful science about OSM, and ideally you shouldn't even be
friends with mappers. (I know one person who did their PhD on OSM and
who explicitly said to me, before that, that they didn't want to be
perceived as "part of the community" lest it would reflect badly on
their thesis.) On the other hand, a lack of communication by a scientist
looking at OSM is often perceived as arrogance on OSM's side (even more
so if the resulting talk/paper/article gets the facts wrong because of

It is certainly good for OSM to offer a helping hand to scientists who
are seeking cooperation. I would also like us to develop a review and
fact check mechanism for scientific publications on OSM so that those
who don't bother to get their facts right are held accountable for the
bad science they inevitably produce.


Frederik Ramm  ##  eMail frederik at remote.org  ##  N49°00'09" E008°23'33"

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