Welcome to the website for the VOSS research project at Florida State University, formally titled Virtual Scientific Teams: Life-Cycle Formation and Long-Term Scientific Collaboration. This project is funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF; award number OCI-0942855) and is being conducted by researchers at Florida State University‘s College of Communication and Information. It asks the following overall question: what social and organizational factors best support the transition of short-term experiment-focused multidisciplinary virtual scientific collaborations to long-term productive and innovative programs of scientific research? The goal of this research is to develop and validate one or more lifecycle models that support scientific teams through the transition from discrete, experiment-focused projects to long-term collaborations, thereby advancing discovery and innovation and increasing productivity.
The virtual multidisciplinary scientific teams being studied in the VOSS research project are using the facilities of the National High Magnetic Field Laboratory (often shortened to the “Magnet Lab” or “Mag Lab”), an interdisciplinary scientific center with distributed facilities in Tallahassee, FL (at Florida State University); Los Alamos, NM (at Los Alamos National Laboratory); and Gainesville, FL (at the University of Florida). The lifecycle models will be built from data that is being collected through descriptive multiple-case studies of these teams. More specifically, this data comes from content analysis of documentary artifacts, observation of scientific teams at the Mag Lab, and interviews with members of scientific teams. This research is grounded in an analysis of social and organizational factors related to the concepts of the theory of information worlds: social norms, social types, values and information behaviors.
This site features an updates blog with the latest information about the VOSS project’s progress and activities. An excerpt from the latest post is always shown at the top right of this home page. You can also view information on the people that are involved with the VOSS project. In addition, there is more detailed information available about the project itself, its basis in theory and previous research, and the methods being used to study the virtual teams. Finally, you can contact us if you have any questions or comments about the project by using the information below.