Noelia Martínez-Doallo, postdoctoral fellow at the University of Konstanz

Keywords: challenges of collaboration; democratization of knowledge

This course was organized by the Galician Professional Association of Case Workers, with an objective to provide further education to this professional group.

During the course, Noelia was engaged in the module about confidentiality, professional secrecy, data protection and the social record. Noelia highlights challenges of collaboration between academic and non-academic actors, for example, establishing effective communication, because the legal language is different from the language the caseworkers use in practice. Another challenge is overcoming differences between a rather practical approach of case workers and more theoretical, abstract approach used by scholars.

Noelia shares that in her experience, collaboration between scholars and non-academic participants becomes more fruitful and effective when they aim to create trust-based relationships, when researchers try to put themselves in participants’ shoes.

Another reflection Noelia shares is the importance of democratization of science and knowledge – staying focused on the mission of academia and research – to improve the life quality of society, rather than just finding commercial applications to the outcomes of research.

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