Understanding Knowledge as a Commons: From Theory to Practice
Knowledge in digital form offers unprecedented access to information through the Internet but at the same time is subject to ever-greater restrictions through intellectual property legislation, overpatenting, licensing, overpricing, and lack of preservation. Looking at knowledge as a commons--as a shared resource--allows us to understand both its limitless possibilities an...more
Hardcover, 367 pages
Published December 1st 2006 by MIT Press (MA)
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Very mediocre. The theoretical framework was thin, not used coherently throughout the book, didn't take historical practices and understandings into account, and didn't reference the tremendous amount of complementary work available (where were the references to Bourdieu, for instance?). There was a surprising amount of naivete and omission of complexity in the discussion of repositories. Lastly, there was no concluding editorial voice that brought all of the individual chapter contributions tog...more
These 12 chapters introduce the reader to issues about the complexities of knowledge and information as a dynamic common resource. The book is edited by Hess and Ostrom, and Ostrom's IAD (Institutional Analysis and Development) framework is referenced often. This framework is described as a "diagnostic tool that can be used to investigate any broad subject where humans repeatedly interact within rules and norms that guide their choice of strategies and behaviors." Open access, intellectual prope...more