I’m at the Workshop in Political Theory and Policy Analysis at the University of Indiana. There’s an excellent conference here on “Scholarly Communications as a Commons.” I’m going to save commenting on that topic until tomorrow, when I’ll have more time for blogging and I may understand the issues a bit better. For today, I would like to praise the Workshop briefly (as I have before, in print). It seems to me absolutely exemplary as a home for engaged scholarship. The work of Elinor Ostrom and her colleagues involves close collaboration with communities; it generates information useful to those communities, while drawing on their knowledge; and it produces cutting-edge insights and methodologies of great importance to the social sciences. Ostrom’s insights could not arise without her community engagement. Thus she demonstrates that engagement can be more than just “service,” or a transfer of knowledge to people outside a university–it can be an essential form of inquiry.