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Scientific committee (was: Re: [jox] Draft CFP)

Hi Mathieu and all!

I hope you don't mind that I'm continuing on this topic. But I think
it is good to make these things clear in the beginning. I also think
that it is useful to discuss possible dangers. I hope in practice this
will turn out to be superfluous but it's better to set guidelines when
not already in conflict about something.

4 days ago Mathieu O'Neil wrote:
d) Regarding your concerns about having too many people involved and
sort of losing control over the project (what George referred to as
the risk of diluting "ideological coherence"). 

In terms of what scientific committee members are expected to do, I would suggest the following:
-contribute submissions
-review submissions
-discuss submissions on the list
-write rejoinders or dissents to submissions
-contribute thoughts on the direction of the project

Ok. However, I'd appreciate if we could get the possible roles and
their responsibilities clearer.

The key question, however, is: Who makes go/no-go decisions? You as
the lead editor? A team? If so who is a team member? I'm open for any
solution but would appreciate we could clarify this up front.

So, potentially, you might argue that new people could hijack the
project and drag it where it should not go. There are two ways in
which this is not such a big risk in my view.

That's my (and George's and may be even Graham's?) concern more or
less, yes.

First, I will naturally approach people who I think will be a good fit. 

Sure. Though I generally trust you we could consider whether
additional transparency could add to this feeling.

Now, you might say that this was not a very satisfactory answer
because it relies on one person's judgment too much: I agree. But
there is a structural way to preempt any mistakes I might make. I
would argue that the very nature of this project (the clear adoption
of peer production principles such as the rejection of proprietary
software for submissions, the focus on transparent and publicly
archived discussion - via this list - for peer reviews, the fact
that the journal is hosted on the Oekonux website, etc) means that
only those people who are comfortable with these principles will
self-select to participate. 

The CFP/mission statement will act as a kind of founding document or
charter in this respect. It is up to us to use it to make it as
clear as possible what it is that we want to do. This document is
being discussed _now_ and though there may be evolutions or nuances
in the future it will fundamentally frame whatever direction the
project takes. In this way you could say that ideological coherence
will derive from the required adherence of participants to the
above-mentioned principles.

So the answer is that we have a charter and people need to abide this
charter and we have to make sure that people do so. Sounds reasonable.

Well, when I think in more theoretical terms about this problem then
I'd say that we need to make sure that alienated reasons to
participate are kept out as good as possible. And "alienated" I spell
out as reasons different from "creating the best possible journal
about 'Critical Studies in Peer Production'".

So what alienated reasons to participate could exist?

* Hijacking the journal

  As you described. In fact a charter is a good way to counter this.

  Hijacking is interesting only if the journal has some importance
  already. Why should anyone hijack an unknown project? So for the
  start this alienated reason is not very likely.

* Improving own CV

  That is a reason which does not need to conflict with the concrete
  goal of creating the best possible journal so this is probably
  acceptable. Nonetheless we need to be careful that this reason to
  participate does not dominate.

Since we have no money to spend the reason to earn money does not
exist :-) .



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