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Narrating National Geo Information Infrastructures: Balancing Infrastructure and Innovation

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DOI: 10.4236/jssm.2009.24040    4,795 Downloads   8,234 Views   Citations

ABSTRACT

This paper examines narratives relating to the development of National Geo Information Infrastructures (NGII) in ethnographic research on a Dutch NGII project which was monitored throughout its course. We used an approach which focuses on narratives concerning the environment, groups and practice to elicit sense-making processes. We assert that narratives are relatively fixed and that they only change under specific circumstances. Moreover, the fixing of or change in narratives takes place in practice, so our research approach aimed at analysing narratives of practice, which we label ‘storyboards’. For this purpose, project meetings and conferences were observed, key persons both within and outside the project environment were interviewed, and an analysis of relevant documents and video footage was undertaken. Storyboards are created by actors as a result of day-to-day challenges related to project goals, technology and infrastructure. In our research we found that these storyboards occur as vicious circles from which actors cannot escape. In the specific case analysed, our interpretation of the narrative storyboards suggested that these vicious circles are caused by the inability of project participants to distinguish between infrastructure and innovation requirements in their daily work.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.

Cite this paper

H. Koerten and M. Veenswijk, "Narrating National Geo Information Infrastructures: Balancing Infrastructure and Innovation," Journal of Service Science and Management, Vol. 2 No. 4, 2009, pp. 334-347. doi: 10.4236/jssm.2009.24040.

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