To ascertain the diffusion and influence of Savolainen's ELIS model and its use as a theoretical and/or methodological basis for research.
A context citation analysis was made of the work where this researcher published his model. Analysis covered the year of publication, the type of work and the subject matter of the citing documents concerned. In-context citations were analysed for their frequency in each citing text, style, location and content cited.
The ELIS model received 18.5 cites/year. 20.2 per cent of them corresponded to papers published in journals in other areas, mainly computer science. The average of cites per paper was 1.8; 64.5 percent of the citing works cited them only once. 60 per cent of the cites were considered essential. Only 13.7 per cent of these cites appear in theory or methods. 37 per cent of the citing documents contained no concept relating to the model.
The method used focuses on the most direct context of a cite (sentence or paragraph), but isolates it from the general context (full document, other documents by the author or their social capital). It has, however, allowed this research issue to be dealt with under laboratory conditions and revealed nuances hidden by the absolute number of cites.
It has become evident that the dissemination and influence of the ELIS model are less than what the total number of cites indicates and that it has scarcely been incorporated into research design. Despite its popularity, it is not being validated and/or refuted by way of empirical data.
González-Teruel, A. and Pérez-Pulido, M. (2020), "The diffusion and influence of theoretical models of information behaviour. The case of Savolainen's ELIS model", Journal of Documentation, Vol. ahead-of-print No. ahead-of-print. https://doi.org/10.1108/JD-10-2019-0197Download as .RIS
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