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Information seeking behavior in epistemological light (SIG USE)

Ian Cornelius, Joacim Hansson, Jeppe Nicolaisen, Pertti Vakkari & Olof Sundin

Sparking Synergies: Bringing Research and Practice Together @ ASIST '05 (ASIS&T 2005)
Westin Charlotte, Charlotte, North Carolina, October 28 - November 2, 2005


Description/abstract of the session: This session focus on epistemological issues related to information behavior. All presentations emphases the important of an interpretative and a social approach to the investigation of information seeking and utilization. Ian Cornelius explores the basic conditions that must exist for information seeking to be a possible activity. Joacim Hansson considers information science between the poles of modern and postmodern science and sees hermeneutic as a bridge between these poles. Jeppe Nicolaisen consider epistemological theories as normative theories of information seeking and claims that any explanation of information behavior at the deepest level must consider epistemological theories. Finally, Olof Sundin finds that knowledge claims (and thus information) are neither to be valued against an external reality nor against the cognitive structure of individual subjects, but within different communities of justification. In order to understand concepts such as information need and relevance we must pay attention to how these communities of justification are a result of competing societal interests.

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