In-Forest is a multi-method study that empirically investigates the interplay of value attribution processes and inequalities in science using the example of interdisciplinary forest research. It examines whose/what kind of knowledge is recognised as valid and relevant, and how social dimensions such as gender and locality affect the social and epistemic positions of actors in the forest science field. For this purpose, the study combines bibliometric and ethnographic methods with a comparative content analysis of scientific publications, for which different datasets of forest research (publications in international as well as in country-specific journals, with a focus on South Africa and Tanzania) are created.
The project draws on sociology of science and scientometrics, valuation studies as well as postcolonial and feminist research. It thus combines hitherto disparate perspectives in order to better understand inequalities and their impact on global knowledge production, which is a crucial prerequisite for overcoming them. The results of the study will be brought into STS as well as into forest research itself for reflection and discussion. The African-European team aims to provide a significant contribution and impetus to current discourses that address knowledge diversity and inclusion in the context of sustainable development and responsible research.