Manners

The Research Group

Academics are subject to norms in many ways. 'Oughts' and prohibitions constitute a diverse and heterogenous complex. Codified expectations of behaviour specifically formulated for researchers' actions such as the DFG's "Principles to ensure good scientific practice" only encompass a relatively small section of actions and are, unspokenly, geared towards very specific disciplines.

Beyond that, there are many norms for correct acedemic behaviour. Presumably, these other norms make up the larger part and are by no means less important, even if they have not been issued in writing by an institution. They are about conventions, standards, rules of politeness and questions of academic style – or, put in a different way: manners. There is hardly a field of action that does not provide norms for propriety or prudence: Introductions and acknowledgements, the "usual application documents", the choice of research topics, the demonstrative presence in the workplace at early or late hours, the decorous behaviour at conferences (address, title, attitude, habitus, clothing), the assessment of "fashionable" topics, citation rules, the arrangement of favourable reviews and many more.

more

The centrality of unwritten laws

Although some details may be disputed, there is no doubt as to the fundamental validity of these unwritten laws. Their centrality for individual professional advancement and for the constitution of the field is regarded very highly by al participants. Is the importance of "manners" underestimated in debates about scientific norms? And what do the sociology of universities and science says about this?

The RG Manners! undertook to consider existing disciplinary, situative, geographic and other differences on the one hand, but on the other hand also to took at comparable and comparative elements. Questions like the following were addressed: What normative pressure is exerted by the increased market orientation and economisation of project-based academia? Does this affect the content beyond the influence over the kind of research and the presentation of results?

As long as form and content cannot be separated in academia, should academics' style and manners not be treated as a constituent rather than discounted as appendices to the "real" content?
The Research Group ceased its activities with the publication of the anthology "Mekkas der Moderne. Pilgerstätten der Wissensgesellschaft" in 2010.

Activities

Debates and Expert Panels

The RG Manners! organised three events during which several core themes of its work were illuminated and discussed.

Publications

In 2010, the RG Manners! published the anthology "Mekkas der Moderne. Pilgerstätten der Wissensgesellschaft" and in 2006, published by C.H. Beck Verlag, the dictionary "Der Campus-Knigge".

 

Members

  • Hildegard Westphal

    Contact

    Hildegard Westphal
    Palaeontology / Geology
    Leibniz-Zentrum für Marine Tropenforschung GmbH
    Hildegard Westphal more
  • Eva-Maria Engelen

    Eva-Maria Engelen
    Philosophy
    Berlin-Brandenburgische Akademie der Wissenschaften
    Eva-Maria Engelen more
  • Miloš Vec

    Miloš Vec
    Jurisprudence
    Universität Wien (Österreich)
    Miloš Vec more
  • Ulrich Schollwöck

    Ulrich Schollwöck
    Theoretical Physics
    Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München
    Ulrich Schollwöck more
  • Robert Wolf

    Robert Wolf
    Chemistry
    Universität Regensburg
    Robert Wolf more
  • Mathias Kläui

    Mathias Kläui
    Physics
    Johannes Gutenberg-Universität Mainz
    Mathias Kläui more
  • Sylvia Cremer

    Sylvia Cremer
    Biology
    Institute of Science and Technology Austria (Österreich)
    Sylvia Cremer more
  • Anna Wienhard

    Anna Wienhard
    Mathematics
    Ruprecht-Karls-Universität Heidelberg
    Anna Wienhard more
  • Rebekka von Mallinckrodt

    Rebekka von Mallinckrodt
    Modern History
    Universität Bremen
    Rebekka von Mallinckrodt more
 
 
Recommend site