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Broadening the field of information

Boris Bosancic (Department of Information Sciences, Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, University of Osijek, Osijek, Croatia)

Journal of Documentation

ISSN: 0022-0418

Article publication date: 5 January 2023

Issue publication date: 31 May 2023




The paper discusses the notion of information with regard to its carriers, representatives (or structural carriers) and carried-related processes of transmission, accumulation and processing through the developmental periods of the inorganic and organic world. In the first period, information is contained in a representation of the outcome of physical, chemical and other processes in the physical, chemical and other structures of the non-living world and refers to environmental information. In the second period, information begins to be used to create the physical and chemical structures of the living world and is contained in instructions of the genetic code. In the third period, with the evolution of cognitive systems and intelligence of living beings, in addition to those listed, information is finally being used to build its own structures, which in this paper are called knowledge structures.


In addition to the usual scientific methods in conceptual papers of this type (analysis, synthesis, etc.), the methodology of the paper also relies on the method of analogy, which was used to detect the carriers and representatives of information in the processes of transmission, accumulation and processing of information and the method of classification in order to propose a new taxonomy related to the concept of information.


The paper shows that information carriers and information representatives appear in each of the three mentioned processes - transmission, accumulation and processing of information - and that they need to be distinguished from the information itself. This insight opened a new perspective in observing this concept and led to the proposal of a new taxonomy related to the concept of information in a given context, eliminating seemingly incommensurable approaches to its study in different scientific fields.


The conducted synthesis results in information being recognized as a transmittable/transmissible documentation of reality inseparable from its carrier and its representative.



Bosancic, B. (2023), "Broadening the field of information", Journal of Documentation, Vol. 79 No. 4, pp. 1027-1047.



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