AM Panels & Technical Sessions 2009 START Conference Manager    

Information Seeking and Use in Diverse Organizational Contexts

Brian Detlor, Chun Wei Choo, Maureen MacKenzie, Don Turnbull and Matt Ratto

(Submission #2)


This session combines individual presentations with a group discussion. The focus of this session and the expertise of this panel bring together ways of thinking about information seeking and use in diverse organizational contexts. Organizational contexts are not uniform. Quite the contrary, they are very diverse in terms of the individuals, cultures, habits, routines, systems and infrastructures within them. The panelists offer varying viewpoints on how to best address information seeking and use diversity in the workplace. Though each panelist offers different perspectives on how to do this, collectively they rally a persuasive need to not assume homogeneity in our understanding and investigation of information seeking and use in organizational settings. Rather, they suggest it would be better to recognize the acute diversity in the individuals, tasks, cultures, technologies, and information practices that exist in organizations today, and to develop models, approaches, and recommendations of information seeking and use that reflect our understanding of this diversity.

The panel session will begin with a general overview by Brian Detlor of the panel's theme and its relevance and importance to the broader ASIST community. Background will be given on key models and theories that inform our understanding of diversity issues in organizational information behavior research, including those that are individual and task-based. This will set the stage and provide context to the individual panelist presentations. Each panelist will situate his or her talk in context to the overall theme and will elicit key insights and recommendations pertaining to this theme. Further, each panelist will conclude his or her talk with a list of thought provoking questions. This should provide a powerful mechanism to engage conversation and the sharing of ideas between panel members and audience participants.

This session reflects the interests of the SIG-USE membership and aligns with the ASIST 2009 theme of “Thriving on Diversity - Information Opportunities in a Pluralistic World.” The individual panelists will speak to the following topics concerning information seeking and use: Information Culture Diversity (panelist: Chun Wei Choo); ii) Manager Diversity (panelist: Maureen MacKenzie); iii) Information Technology Diversity (panelist: Don Turnbull); and iv) Information Practices and Scale Diversity in Organizations (panelist: Matt Ratto).


SIG SPONSORSHIP?: Information Needs, Seeking and Use (USE)

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