Fuzzy thoughts for Friday…
Take a look at the post from hypertextual, below. Ignore that the orginal rules were written for developers… put aside that they have been reworded for knowledge workers… and reinterpret as “you are not your research / thesis / paper”…
… then ask yourself:
- does this work for you as a researcher?
- could this smooth the path in collaborations?
This got me thinking (watch out!)
For me, I have never considered ego in research, at least not where the ego concerned was my own. The topic of ego tends to arise in discussions about other researchers, particularly where the relationship could be considered unequal (with regard to experience or academic hierarchy): such as doctoral researcher & supervisor; or postdoc & principal investigator.
But me… have an ego…?
I’m currently awaiting a date for my viva. I have invested nearly five years of my life, and a lot of myself in my doctoral research. To me, it’s like a member of the family: I don’t necessarily like it, or think it’s anywhere near the best, and sometimes I feel a bit embarrassed to be connected to it. I’m fully aware of all its faults, yet it’s mine, and therefore I love it. I don’t always want to talk about it with other researchers, and I can’t help making comparisons with others’ work. Someone else’s research is always more exciting, worthwhile and ground-breaking than my own. But, to take the family analogy a little bit further: if anyone else dared to attack my research, I would defend it to pretty much the death (of my future career, probably). So it seems I cannot disconnect entirely from my research. I cannot see the line between “me” and “it”. And I’m defensive about my work… hmmm…
Which means I do have an ego. And I need to keep the rules in mind when I have my viva.
I think I’ll be printing out those rules and starting to practice them from right now…
Happy Friday, have a great weekend