Transboundary E-waste

Debates in the scholarly literature.

A key part of mapping a controversy is identifying points on which actors disagree. We developed an interpretive tool to help us sift through the large volume of texts that constitute the underlying terrain we are trying to map. We call this tool a concordance of disagreement. This slightly odd term refers to a list of words that we used to semi-automate searching for points of disagreement within the scholarly literature. The full procedure we used can be found here.

To visualize the areas of disagreement in the scholarly literature we used a platform called DebateGraph. In the visualizations below, the controversy in the scholarly literature is divided into issues (orange), positions (blue), and actors (named authors expressing a position). The blue position 'boxes' or 'bubbles' contain a direct citation of the source text for a given position (look for the "Details" tab in the top right corner of DebateGraph screen). The actor boxes or bubbles contain information, when it was available, about the author holding a given position. Together this information can help users navigate through points of debate and make judgements for themselves about positions held by authors in the literature.

Below we have highlighted two ways of viewing the same underlying data. Other ways of viewing the debates can be found by clicking the "Views" tab in DebateGraph. Using the concordance of disagreement we identified seven areas in the scholarly literature where disagreement is most prominent.

Users can navigate the DebateGraph visualizations below or open them in a new window (click here or here).

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