The Relation between this Project and Academia
A lot of the content that this project releases is somewhat academically oriented, so it worth explaining the relation between this project and academia. I am not a member of any university, neither as a professor nor as a graduate student, although I am working with some people who are connected to academia. I only have a BS in computer science, but I have been independently studying and researching philosophy and the social sciences for several years, often with the assistance of people who have advanced degrees in these fields.
Some years ago, I formulated a rough outline for this project, and I pitched it to some universities, professors, and academic departments, but there was no interest in something so interdisciplinary. They tend to be very narrowly focused and they do not often cooperate across disciplines and departments to try to address societal challenges and they are quite hesitant to admit outsiders with different approaches.
Academic institutions and the scientists, philosophers, and other professionals that work within them have very detailed jargon and usually it is only within specific academic communities that anyone understand this discourse. It would be extremely difficult for an independent researcher such as myself to penetrate this from the outside and be able to fully engage with them at that level. One would have to understand the full history of the development of the ideas, the points and counterpoints, across the entire history of a specific area of specialization, and they would also have to adequately understand the works of the academics who are actively engaging in this profession and publishing works. These specializations often fall into a narrow niche and are very nuanced and detail oriented.
This project, on the other hand is very broad, holistic, and integrative. Such a project is very much needed in order to share ideas across academic disciplines and different fields of study with the goal of coming up with innovations that might allow us to address the greatest challenges of our time. It would not be possible for anyone to have academic-level knowledge of every relevant discipline, which would include various sub-fields of philosophy, psychology, sociology, political science, communication theory, among others, and also to be able to integrate them. It is simply impossible for anyone to simultaneously have such broad array of knowledge and also an extremely deep degree of knowledge in all of these fields. Unfortunately, universities tend very much to only admit as members those scholars and researchers who they are highly specialized in some specific field, and they also don’t often engage with independent researchers. As such, a project such as this is highly unlikely to emerge out of academia. This dynamic prevents any real progress in producing integrative works that are needed.
I really felt that this was a good idea and that it had serious potential and that it was necessary in our world, so I ended up going about it largely on my own. All along, the plan was to build a team of people with diverse skills and talents and that the project would end up taking the character of different people’s views. All along, I always maintained that this project would only be successful in conjunction with and in coordination with academia, but I saw that I would have to put in significant personal investment of time and research and refinement of the products before I could really get academics involved.
At this point, I am an independent scholar who is looking to partner with professors and universities. I am not sure how this might be possible, but I imagine that if there are professors who are interested in my work, I could co-author papers with them and submit them for publication. Co-authorship seems to make sense to me, since I have some original ideas that might not have previously occurred to a certain professor, and then the two of us could work together to produce a paper that would have a high level of academic rigor. It is the academic rigor that I am not easily able to achieve while working alone and outside of academia. Also, if I were able to co-author papers with someone who is connected with academia, this work would be disseminated more broadly and we could both achieve greater recognition of this shared work. As such, I can envision a partnership with academia that would be mutually beneficial.
If you are a university professor or a graduate student and you are interested in being involved with this project, please email me firstname.lastname@example.org