Expertise, Knowledge, and Resilience in #AcademicTwitter: Enacting Resilience-Craft in a Community of Practice

Open Access Journal | ISSN: 2183-2439

Article | Open Access

Expertise, Knowledge, and Resilience in #AcademicTwitter: Enacting Resilience-Craft in a Community of Practice


  • Sean M. Eddington Department of Communication Studies, Kansas State University, USA
  • Caitlyn Jarvis Department of Communication Studies, Kansas State University, USA


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Abstract:  Online communities of practice are a useful professional development space, where members can exchange information, aggregate expertise, and find support. These communities have grown in popularity within higher education—especially on social networking sites like Twitter. Although popular within academe, less is known about how specific online communities of practice respond and adapt during times of crisis (e.g., building capacity for resilience). We examined 22,078 tweets from #AcademicTwitter during the first two months of the Covid-19 pandemic, which impacted higher education institutions greatly, to explore how #AcademicTwitter enacted resilience during this time. Using text mining and semantic network analysis, we highlight three specific communicative processes that constitute resilience through a form of resilience labor that we conceptualize as “resilience craft.” Our findings provide theoretical significance by showing how resilience craft can extend theorizing around both communities of practice and the communicative theory of resilience through a new form of resilience labor. We offer pragmatic implications given our findings that address how universities and colleges can act resiliently in the face of uncertainty.

Keywords:  #AcademicTwitter; communities of practice; Covid-19; hashtags; resilience; Twitter

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.17645/mac.v10i2.5053


© Sean M. Eddington, Caitlyn Jarvis. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0), which permits any use, distribution, and reproduction of the work without further permission provided the original author(s) and source are credited.