ASIST AM 03 2003 START ConferenceManager    

Information Gathering Revealed Within the Social Network of Line-Managers

Maureen L. Mackenzie

Presented at ASIST 2003 Annual Meeting -- Humanizing Information Technology: From Ideas to Bits and Back (ASIST AM 03 2003), Westin Long Beach, Long Beach, California, October 20 - 23, 2003


This year’s ASIST theme of humanizing information technology invites inquiry into the human elements that influence information behavior. The results of this qualitative study revealed that relationship, more than knowledge, may be the reason a manager is sought as an information source within a business environment. The context was a large business unit within a major US corporation. Social network mapping was selected as the appropriate method so as to capture a more intimate view of the information relationships within a business environment. Content analysis was used to analyze the data and to draw out the themes. The non-hierarchical flow of knowledge among managers and the reasons managers seek others as information sources further differentiates and documents line-managers as a unique information user-group.

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