When is information work?

Information science researchers and practitioners discuss information activities using a large number of different terms. A concept that often appears in colloquial discussions of information activities but that has received less systematic attention in information science research is that of information work. A panel at the 2016 ASIS&T Annual Meeting in Copenhagen consisting of myself, John Budd, Annemaree Lloyd, Carole Palmer and Elaine Toms, all information science researchers who have explicitly used the notion of information work in their research or  conducted information work related research discussed how the concept can inform information science and technology research, and practice. 

In contrast to my expectations it seemed that the different takes on information work represented by the panelists were had many similarities. Instead of suggesting that information work would be a concept to replace other information activities related concepts like information practices or information behaviour, the panelists underlined the notion as a concept that binds together individual, related activities. Another central aspect of information work discussed by multiple panelists is its relation to the notion (or different notions) of work.

The published proceedings paper has references to the earlier work of the panelists, and the introductory slides to the panel discussion can be found below.

Information Services and Digital Literacy provides an alternative perspective for understanding information services and digital literacy, and argues that a central problem in the age of the social web and the culture of participation is that we do not know the premises of how we know, and how ways of interacting with information affect our actions and their outcomes.

Read more

Taking Health Information Behaviour into Account: implications of a neglected element for success- ful implementation of consumer health technologies on older adults (HIBA) is an Academy of Finland funded research project at Åbo Akademi University.

Read more

ARKDIS project maps the implications and opportunities of the digitalisation of information and information work in the domain of archaeology and to develop and evaluate conceptual and practical methods and procedures for enhancing archaeological information work in the digitalised environment.

Read more