Knowledge Space Lab


Knowledge Space Lab project contributes to the new research area of “maps of science”. The project develops an innovative research line addressing the difference between representing scholarly knowledge in (external) classifications systems (such as thesauri, ontologies, bibliographic systems) and “internal” representations based on data and user-tagging (such as network analysis, user annotations/tagging, folksonomies).


Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences


Virtual Knowledge Studio, Amsterdam: Paul Wouters, Andrea Scharnhorst, Charles van den Heuvel, Krzysztof Suchecki, Almila Akdag Salah, Gao Cheng
International research experts : Katy Börner (Indiana University, US); Loet Leydesdorff (UvA, NL); Mike Thelwall (University of Wolverhampton, UK)


2009 to 2011

Aim and Objectives

The aim of the project is to explore how different visual representations can contribute to a better understanding of knowledge dynamics. The project addresses the relationship between dynamic processes in knowledge systems and the dynamics of a reference system in which these processes are analyzed.

The project has two objectives:

- Objective 1: to contribute to the debate about classifications vs. folksonomies (imposed, pre-defined classifications vs. emergent, fluid classifications) by focusing on the dynamic aspect of the different representations (applying models of knowledge growth, change and structuring)

- Objective 2: to test the meaning of different externally- and internally-based representations; experimenting with data on the emergence and diffusion of computational methods in the different fields (analyzing roots and flows of computational methods and their influence on the disciplinary system)