Tverrfaglig forskningsstøtte - et FagSosioTeknisk grenseobjekt

  • Nini Ebeltoft HumSam-biblioteket, Universitetet i Oslo
  • Pål Magnus Lykkja HumSam-biblioteket, Universitetet i Oslo
  • Alte Wehn Hegnes Division for matproduksjon og samfunn, Norsk institutt for bioøkonomi


It is widely acknowledged that interdisciplinary research is required for adequately addressing global challenges. This article explores what interdisciplinary research implies for research libraries assisting such work, and for researchers receiving support. The main research question is: In what manner is interdisciplinary research support shaped and constructed as a result of contact and collaboration between researchers and the research library? Along with document studies, 15 semi-structured interviews have been conducted involving academic staff at the University of Oslo (UiO) and librarians at the UiO research library. Theoretical insight from the fields of Library and Information Science and Science and Technology Studies are combined using Boundary Objects (BO) as an analytical concept. In analysing empirical data, two dual-level competencies and library practices are identified: those that are technical and librarian, and those that are academically-professional and socio-emotional. In the junctions between these, interdisciplinary research support appears as a boundary object characterized as SubjectSocioTechnical. Collaboration and support for interdisciplinary research call for a complex of competencies, primarily because various support practices must be tailored to fit researchers’ disciplines and needs.


Albrechtsen, H. & Jacob, E. (1998). The dynamics of classification systems as boundary objects for cooperation in the electronic library. Library Trends, 47, 293-312

Bowker, G. C., & Star, S. L. (1998). How Classifications Work: Problems and Challenges in an Electronic Age. Library Trends, 47(2), 185-340.

Bowker, G. C., & Star, S. L. (2000). Sorting things out: Classification and its consequences.Cambridge: MIT press.

Bourdieu, P. & Wacquant, L. J. D. (1995). Den kritiske ettertanke. Oslo: Det Norske Samlaget.

Bøyum, I., Gullbekk, E. & Byström, K. (2017). «Et helt nytt ‘mindset’»? Informasjons kompetanse og tverrfaglighet i bibliotekenes undervisningsoppdrag. I A. Anderson, et al. (Red.), Det åpne bibliotek: Forskningsbibliotek i endring (s. 121-146). Cappelen Damm Akademisk.

Caidi, N. (2004). The Politics of Library Artifacts: The National Union Catalog. The Library Quarterly, 74(3), 337–369.

Creswell, J., & Poth, C. (2017). Qualitative inquiry & research design: Choosing among five approaches (4. ed.). Los Angeles: Sage Publications

Ebeltoft, N. (2009). Forbindelsespedagogikk og forandringstaktikk: En studie av internasjonale undervisningsprogrammer på nettet. Doktorgradsavhandling. Oslo: Universitetet i Oslo. Unipub. URL:

Fleischmann, K. R. (2007). Digital Libraries with Embedded Values: Combining Insights from LIS and Science and Technology Studies. The Library Quarterly: Information, Community, Policy, 77(4), 409–427.

Fujimura, J. H. (1996). Crafting science: A sociohistory of the quest for the genetics of cancer. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.

Gieryn, T. F. (1983). Boundary-Work and the Demarcation of Science from Non-Science: Strains and Interests in Professional Ideologies of Scientists. American Sociological Review, 48(6), 781–795.

Glaser, B. G. & Strauss, A. L. (2000). Discovery of grounded theory: Strategies for qualitative research. London: Routledge.

Grønlund, I. L. & Ringnes, H. K. (2017). «Biblioteket er fett» – om fagbiblioteket som sosial og emosjonell arena. I A. Anderson, et al. (Red.), Det åpne bibliotek: Forskningsbibliotek i endring (s. 193-213). Cappelen Damm Akademisk.

Gullbekk, E. (2016). Apt information literacy? A case of interdisciplinary scholarly communication. Journal of Documentation, 72(4), 716-736.

Huvila, I., Anderson, T. D., Jansen, E. H., McKenzie, P., & Worrall, A. (2017). Boundary objects in information science. Journal of the Association for Information Science and Technology, 68(8), 1807-1822.

Ebeltoft, Lykkja & Hegnes: Tverrfaglig forskningsstøtte - et FagSosioTeknisk grenseobjekt 102

Kuhlthau, C. C. (2004). Seeking meaning: a process approach to library and information services. Westport, Conn.: Libraries Unltd.

Kunnskapsdepartementet. Langtidsplan for forskning og høyere utdanning 2015–2024 (Meld. St. 7 (2014–2015). URL: Kvale, S., Brinkmann, S., Anderssen, T., & Rygge, J. (2015). Det kvalitative forskningsintervju (3.ed). Oslo: Gyldendal akademisk.

Leousis, K. & Schmidt, G. (2014) Interdisciplinary collaboration for collection development in sustainability: starting from scratch. In M.A. Jankowska (Red.), Focus on educating for sustainability: toolkit for academic libraries (s. 125-137). Sacramento, CA: Library Juice Press.

Lovecy, I. (2003). A Sector is Born: The Influence of G. Woledge and BS Page: A Manual of University & College Library Practice: A review article. Journal of Librarianship and Information Science, 35(4), 259-264.

Mack, D. C., & Gibson, C. (Ed.) (2012). Interdisciplinarity and academic libraries (Vol. 66). Chicago, Ill: Association of College and Research Libraries.

Montoya, R. (2017). Boundary Objects/Boundary Staff: Supporting Digital Scholarship in Academic Libraries. The Journal of Academic Librarianship, 43(3), 216-223.

Palmer, C. L. (1996). Information Work at the Boundaries of Science: Linking Library Services to Research Practices. Library Trends, 45(2), 165–91.

Osborn, J. (2017). Librarians as teachers: Forming a learning and teaching community of practice. Journal of the Australian Library and Information Association, 66(2), 162-169.

Snow, C. P. (1959). The two cultures and the scientific revolution. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Star, S.L. (1989). The structure of ill-structured solutions: boundary objects and heterogeneous distributed problem solving. In L. Glasser & M.H. Huhns (Red.), Distributed artificial intelligence (s. 37-54). London: Pitman.

Star, S. L. (2010). This Is not a Boundary-Object. Revue d'anthropologie des connaissances, 4(1), 18-35.

Star, S. L., & Griesemer, J. R. (1989). Institutional ecology, translations’ and boundary objects: Amateurs and professionals in Berkeley’s Museum of Vertebrate Zoology, Social studies of science, 19(3), 387-420.

Star, S. L., Bowker, G. C., & Neumann, L. J. (2003). Transparency beyond the individual level of scale: Convergence between information artifacts and communities of practice. In A. Peterson-Kemp, B. Buttenfield, N. Van House, & A. Bishop (Red.), Digital library use: Social practice in design and evaluation. (s. 241–269). Cambridge, Massachusetts.

Steger, C. et al. (2018). Ecosystem services as boundary objects for transdisciplinary collaboration. Ecological Economics, 143, 153-160.

Stølen, S. (2018). Tverrfaglighetens kår, Rektorbloggen 12.10.18. URL:

Universitetet i Oslo (2017): Årsplan 2018-2020 – Universitetsbiblioteket.URL:

Universitetsbiblioteket (2010). Universitetsbibliotekets strategiplan 2010-2020.URL:

Ebeltoft, Lykkja & Hegnes: Tverrfaglig forskningsstøtte - et FagSosioTeknisk grenseobjekt 103

Universitetsbiblioteket (2015). Et universitetsbibliotek for fremtiden.URL:

Van House, N. A. (2005). Science and technology studies and information studies. Annual review of information science and technology, 38(1), 1-86.

Wenger, Etienne (1998). Communities of Practice: Learning, Meaning, and Identity. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Worrall, A. (2014). The roles of digital libraries as boundary objects within and across social and information worlds. Doctoral dissertation. Florida State University.


Ebeltoft, N., Lykkja, P., & Hegnes, A. (2018). Tverrfaglig forskningsstøtte - et FagSosioTeknisk grenseobjekt. Nordisk Tidsskrift for Informationsvidenskab Og Kulturformidling, 7(3), 89-103.