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Title: The situational window for boundary-spanning infrastructure professions: Making sense of cyberinfrastructure emergence

In the twenty-first century, professions are complex and difficult to define due to their fluid and interdisciplinary natures. In this study, we examined the personal career stories of professionals in the field of cyberinfrastructure (CI) to identify the narrative patterns used to make sense of CI as a boundary-spanning profession. Overall, we found that professionalization of CI is a sensemaking process of communal, retrospective storytelling. The meaning-making of CI as a profession occurred through three levels of narrative patterns: individual traits of CI professionals, situational introductions to CI, and inspirational convictions about CI. The situational level, which connected innate qualities and internal motivations with external forces to join CI as a career, was especially important to the professionalization of CI. Our findings have implications for re-examining professionalization as an ongoing sensemaking process, as well as offering guidance for recruitment and retention in critical boundary-spanning professions.

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Author(s) / Creator(s):
; ;
Publisher / Repository:
Oxford University Press
Date Published:
Journal Name:
Journal of Professions and Organization
Medium: X Size: p. 182-198
["p. 182-198"]
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
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