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Dissertation Information for Nathan R Johnson

NAME:
- Nathan R Johnson

DEGREE:
- Ph.D.

DISCIPLINE:
- Library and Information Science

SCHOOL:
- University of Wisconsin, Madison (USA) (2011)

ADVISORS:
- Kristin Eschenfelder

COMMITTEE MEMBERS:
- Greg Downey
- Christine J. Pawley
- Robert Glenn Howard
- Robert Asen

MPACT Status: Fully Complete

Title: How to build an infrastructure: Rhetorics of web standardization

Abstract: This dissertation explores how infrastructural standards are legitimized among information labor. It does this through textual analysis of trade journals, monographs, and websites devoted to web standardization. To aid analysis, the research develops a hybrid form of rhetorical theory informed by literature from Information Infrastuctural Studies and the Rhetoric of Science. This theory draws attention to historical, material, and tacit claims that are made in the research artifacts and theorizes the practical politics embedded within web standards discourse. The work argues that (1) Commonplaces of war and expertise work to galvanize insider and outsider groups involved with standardization. (2) The research texts often deploy these commonplaces to claim authority about "correct" standardization. (3) These same commonplaces work to elide deliberative discussions about standards at the expense of bolstering authority. (4) Deliberation can be re-engaged by rhetorics that redistribute normative discussions of what constitutes expertise regarding web standardization.

This study's results build on previous theories of information infrastructure and modernity. By showing how rhetoric works to build certain types of infrastructure, it adds another dimension to the large body of research that hypothesizes how information infrastructure interacts with people and technologies. Further, by drawing extensively from literature in several disciplines, this dissertation demonstrates a way that several bodies of research can be metastasized to help inform questions of information infrastructure. This dissertation then discusses the value of this approach: it suggests that attention to infrastructure at the discourse level provides a better understanding of how discourse aids the work of infrastructuring.

MPACT Scores for Nathan R Johnson

A = 0
C = 0
A+C = 0
T = 0
G = 0
W = 0
TD = 0
TA = 0
calculated 2012-08-06 20:43:49

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Students under Nathan R Johnson

ADVISEES:
- None

COMMITTEESHIPS:
- None