Research projects in which artists and academics collaborate are increasingly common. In defense of the added-value of the arts in such collaboratory projects, several arguments may be invoked. For example, artists get invited on a team in order to help communicating research results to a wider audience. Or, an artist may be expected to add ‘a creative perspective’ or attention to ‘embodiment’ or ‘emotions’. In my project I take a closer look at arguments like these about assumed ‘added values’ of an artist’s contribution to a research project. My aim is to unravel the implications and the influence of such assumptions on processes of collaboration ‘in practice’. Through participant observation and interviews with participants in research teams where artists and academics collaborate, I shed light on the work that is done to create, maintain, break away from or creatively ‘work around’ assumptions about an artist’s possible contribution. This way I explore what and how we can learn from doing research with artists in practice.