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An overview of web mining in societal benefit areas

Georgios Lappas (Technological Educational Institution of Western Macedonia, Kastoria, Greece)

Online Information Review

ISSN: 1468-4527

Article publication date: 11 April 2008




The focus of this paper is a survey of web‐mining research related to areas of societal benefit. The article aims to focus particularly on web mining which may benefit societal areas by extracting new knowledge, providing support for decision making and empowering the effective management of societal issues.


E‐commerce and e‐business are two fields that have been empowered by web mining, having many applications for increasing online sales and doing intelligent business. Have areas of social interest also been empowered by web mining applications? What are the current ongoing research and trends in e‐services fields such as e‐learning, e‐government, e‐politics and e‐democracy? What other areas of social interest can benefit from web mining? This work will try to provide the answers by reviewing the literature for the applications and methods applied to the above fields.


There is a growing interest in applications of web mining that are of social interest. This reveals that one of the current trends of web mining is toward the connection between intelligent web services and societal benefit applications, which denotes the need for interdisciplinary collaboration between researchers from various fields.


On the one hand, this work presents to the web‐mining community an overview of research opportunities in societal benefit areas. On the other hand, it presents to web researchers from various disciplines an approach for improving their web studies by considering web mining as a powerful research tool.



Lappas, G. (2008), "An overview of web mining in societal benefit areas", Online Information Review, Vol. 32 No. 2, pp. 179-195.



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Copyright © 2008, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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