Today, the internet is ubiquitous, also in academia. Using the term Cyberscience, the ITA focuses on the impacts and the potential of interactivity, open access and social networking on all aspects of scientific work.

The Internet gained considerable importance in science and research. The technological shifts which took place over the past two decades had an enormous impact on working modes, communication, collaboration, scientific publishing and even the final research results. The ITA analyses the consequences of this development.

Discovering new work-modes

The first ITA study in this area coined the notion of Cyberscience in order to grasp the phenomenon of everyday scientific research and exchange in the net. While at the turn of the milleniumand dominated our day-today work, we now witness the rise of the Web 2.0 and social networking sites like Facebook or Twitter.

Cyberscience offered us two important notions: The Internet influences literally all areas of scientific activity, from the production of knowledge and internal communication to the distribution of knowledge. The second key finding is that the observable developments are not only of a quantitative nature – everything is faster, becomes bigger etc. – but they also influence the quality of research. Virtual institutes are being founded, virtual journals gain influence, roles in the science system, like the role of the librarian, are changing, and finally, reserachers use it as a tool to connect and form new teams.

Communicating with a public audience becomes normal

Interactivity changes the ways in which science is done and influences how the public learns about research results. The ITA-book Cyberscience 2.0 describes a considerably more transparent science with multifaceted exchange between researchers and the public sphere. Blogging, the popularity of micro-communication via Twitter and an ever broader range of publications, such as wikis, indicate that the status of researchers will increasingly be co-determined by their activities in the net.

Being online ubiquitously at the university