Inquiry into the geopolitics of knowledge production arises from broader questions concerning representation and marginalization within processes of global knowledge production. We are interested in understanding whether there is an unequal and under representation of academic content produced in and by “Global South” researchers and if so, we are interested in understanding the various mechanisms and power dimensions through which such structures of inequality and exclusion are actively produced, reproduced and embedded in the global publishing system. In this case, we would also like to examine the implications of such inequalities in regards to diversity of knowledge, cognitive justice, equitable collaboration and sustainable development at large.
Where are we?
The research is hosted at the Centre for Critical Development Studies (CCDS) at the University of Toronto, Scarborough and the research group is affiliated with the Open Science and Development Network (OCSDnet). As an interdisciplinary and international research network, OCSDnet is also investigating the nature of global knowledge production and whether open science practices challenge existing institutional power asymmetries or whether these new framings and practices further marginalize knowledge makers from the non-hegemonic countries.
We acknowledge that productions of inequalities often occur in spaces characterized by a constant interplay of actors and power imbalances at global, national, and local levels. As a research group positioned in a northern institution it is imperative to consider the ways in which our position as northern researchers is also contributing to the geopolitics of knowledge production.
As students, researchers and professors within the university setting we are actively immersed in the knowledge production cycle and as a result are inherent contributors and stakeholders of the academic publishing industry. In many of the social sciences and specifically in the field of development studies we are constantly analyzing and exposing seemingly inherent power structures in relation to their history and context. Yet many of us rarely apply similar power analysis to the academic publishing industry that we are a part of. As part of our broader research question, we will also examine the role of northern institutions and researchers within the complex academic publishing microcosm and its implications for inequalities in global patterns of knowledge production.