In contrast to the prevalent short-term and small-scale studies of knowledge infrastructures, we aim to create alternatives for investigating and conceptualizing their formation. We empirically study LTER networks in their multiple, multi-scope, evolving relations. We aim to develop a methodological approach tentatively called ‘scoping the field’ that is sensitive to the extended, emergent, and complex ontological nature of knowledge infrastructures and new conceptual understanding about the processual notion of ‘multi-scoped infrastructuring’. By applying an interpretive, sociotechnical approach our aim is to provide empirical, substantive, methodological, and theoretical discoveries of knowledge infrastructure formation:
1) To construct a multi-scoped ethnographic object within the ILTER network suitable for the investigation of knowledge infrastructure formation for LTER networks we currently empirically study, that is the Finnish and Norwegian LTER networks in European context;
2) To generate new substantive knowledge about knowledge infrastructure formation;
3) To develop and conceptualize the methodological approach of ‘scoping the field’ for the investigation of large-scale knowledge infrastructures;
4) To advance conceptual and theoretical work on knowledge infrastructures with a particular interest in their formation by developing the notion of ‘multi-scoped infrastructuring’.