Raf Vanderstraeten

Faculty of Political and Social Sciences
Center for Social Theory
Korte Meer 3-5, BE-9000 Ghent

Raf Vanderstraeten has worked at universities in Belgium, France, Germany and the Netherlands. He earned a Ph.D. from Leuven University and a Habilitation from Bielefeld University. He is currently the director of the Center for Social Theory at Ghent University. In the course of his academic career, he has contributed to the history and theory of education, the sociology of religion (secularization), and social studies of science and technology. In his recent work, he focuses on the differentiation of scientific disciplines, especially on changing patterns of communication within scientific communities. From a theoretical point of view, his work builds upon systems theory, neo-institutionalism and network theory. From an historical point of view, the focus of his work is on the role of scientific journals in the course of the 'long' twentieth century. From a thematic point of view, this work addresses issues such as changing definitions of authorship, changing formats of scientific collaboration, processes of nationalization and denationalization (globalization), feedback effects of publication formats on scientific research, and demarcations of disciplinary specializations. A list of Raf Vanderstraeten's publications can be found here.

Selected publications: 

• Vanderstraeten, R. & Biesta, G. (2006). How is education possible? Pragmatism, communication and the social organisation of education. British Journal of Educational Studies, 53, 160-174. • Vanderstraeten, R. (2006). Soziale Beobachtungsraster: Eine wissenssoziologische Analyse von statistischen Klassifikationsschemata. Zeitschrift für Soziologie, 35, 193-211. • Vanderstraeten, R. (2010). Scientific communication: Sociology journals and publication practices. Sociology, 44, 559-576. • Vanderstraeten, R. (2010). Disziplinbildung. Zum Wandel wissenschaftlicher Kommunikation in der Soziologie. Soziale Systeme, 17, 297-312. • Vanderstraeten, R. (2011). Scholarly communication in education journals. Social Science History, 35, 109-130.