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Article
Publication date: 1 April 2003

Shaoyi He

Since the late 1970s, the term “informatics” has increasingly been adopted to describe the application of information technology to various fields, such as legal…

Abstract

Since the late 1970s, the term “informatics” has increasingly been adopted to describe the application of information technology to various fields, such as legal informatics, medical informatics, social informatics and organizational informatics. This article provides a brief survey of informatics with respect to its historical background, disciplinary identity, fundamental aspects, applications, and challenges.

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The Electronic Library, vol. 21 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0264-0473

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Article
Publication date: 14 November 2016

H. Frank Cervone

Informatics is a relatively new interdisciplinary field which is not very well understood outside of specific disciplinary communities. With a review of the history of…

Abstract

Purpose

Informatics is a relatively new interdisciplinary field which is not very well understood outside of specific disciplinary communities. With a review of the history of informatics and a discussion of the various branches of informatics related to health-care practice, the paper aims to provide an overview designed to enhance the understanding of an information professional interested in this field.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper is designed to provide a basic introduction to the topic of informatics for information professionals unfamiliar with the field. Using a combination of historical and current sources, the role of informatics in the health professions is explored through its history and development.

Findings

The emergence of informatics as a discipline is a relatively recent phenomenon. Informatics is neither information technology (IT) nor information science but shares many common interests, concerns and techniques with these other two fields. The role of the informaticist is to transform data to knowledge and information. Consequently, while the outcomes may be different, there are many commonalities in informatics with the work information professionals perform.

Originality/value

Most introductions to informatics assume the reader is either an IT professional or a clinical practitioner in one of the health science fields. This paper takes a unique approach by positioning the discussion of the history and application of informatics in the health sciences from the perspective of the information professional.

Details

Digital Library Perspectives, vol. 32 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2059-5816

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Article
Publication date: 1 March 2005

Roberta Lamb and Steve Sawyer

To extend the work of Rob Kling, whose research interests, and advocacy were at the center of a movement in analytical inquiry and empirical research now known as “social…

Abstract

Purpose

To extend the work of Rob Kling, whose research interests, and advocacy were at the center of a movement in analytical inquiry and empirical research now known as “social informatics”.

Design/methodology/approach

Reviews the work of those who engage in social informatics research to strengthen and further the conceptual perspective, analytical approaches, and intellectual contributions of social informatics.

Findings

The vibrant and growing international community of active social informatics scholars has assembled a social informatics resource kit that includes: perspective lenses through which research data can be viewed critically; techniques for building theory and developing models from socially rich empirical data; and a common body of knowledge regarding the uses and effects of ICTs.

Originality/value

The paper identifies opportunities to engage new scholars in social informatics discussions, and suggests new venues for promoting and extending the work of scholars already enrolled in the social informatics movement.

Details

Information Technology & People, vol. 18 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-3845

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Article
Publication date: 20 April 2012

Pradeep K. Rawat, C.C. Pant, P.C. Tiwari, P.D. Pant and A.K. Sharma

The main objective of the study is to identify the vulnerable areas for river‐line and flash flood hazard and its mitigation through GIS Database Management System (DBMS…

Abstract

Purpose

The main objective of the study is to identify the vulnerable areas for river‐line and flash flood hazard and its mitigation through GIS Database Management System (DBMS) of geo‐hydrometeorological parameters. The Dabka watershed constitutes a part of the Kosi Basin in the Lesser Himalaya, India in district Nainital has been selected for the case illustration.

Design/methodology/approach

The Dabka DBMS is constituted of three GIS (Geographic Information System) modules, i.e. geo‐informatics (consists of geomorphology, soils, geology and land use pattern, slope analysis, drainage density and drainage frequency), weather informatics (consists of daily, monthly and annual weather data about temperature, rainfall, humidity and evaporation) and hydro‐informatics (consist of runoff, sediment delivery, and denudation). The geo‐informatics and weather informatics modules carried out by comprehensive field work and GIS mapping than both modules used to carry out hydro‐informatics module. Through the integration and superimposing of spatial data and attribute data with their GIS layers of all these modules prepared Flood Hazard Index (FHI) to identify the level of vulnerability for flood hazards and their socio‐economic and environmental risks.

Findings

The results suggest that geo‐environmentally most stressed areas of barren land (i.e. river‐beds, flood plain, denudational hills, sites of debris flow, gullies, landslide prone areas etc.) have extreme vulnerability for flood hazard due to high rate of runoff, sediment load delivery and denudation during rainy season (i.e. respectively 84.56 l/s/km2, 78.60 t/km2 and 1.21 mm/year) whereas in geo‐environmentally least stressed dense forest areas (i.e. oak, pine and mixed forests) have low vulnerability due to low rate of stream runoff, sediment load delivery and denudation (i.e. respectively 20.67 l/s/km2, 19.50 t/km2 and 0.20 mm/year). The other frazzled geo‐environment which also found high vulnerable for flood hazard and their risks is agricultural land areas due to high rate of stream runoff, sediment load delivery and denudation rates (i.e. respectively 53.15 l/s/km2, 90.00 t/km2 and 0.92 mm/year).

Research limitations/implications

For hydro‐informatics module it is quite difficult to monitor water and sediment discharge data from each and every stream of the Himalayan terrain due the steep and rugged topography. It requires strategic planning and trained man power as well as sufficient funds; therefore representative micro‐watershed approach of varied ecosystem followed for a three years (2006‐2008) period.

Practical implications

The study will have great scientific relevance in the field of river‐line flood and flash flood hazard and its socio‐economic and environmental risks prevention and management in Himalaya and other mountainous terrain of the world.

Originality/value

This study generated primary data on hydro‐informatics and weather informatics to integrate with geo‐informatics data for flood hazard assessment and mitigation as constitutes a part of multidisciplinary project, Department of Science and Technology (D.S.T.) Government of India.

Details

Disaster Prevention and Management: An International Journal, vol. 21 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0965-3562

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Article
Publication date: 1 April 1996

JENNIFER MACDOUGALL, J. MICHAEL BRITTAIN and ROBERT GANN

This paper provides an overview of the range and development of health informatics, with examples from the literature world wide covering the types of information…

Abstract

This paper provides an overview of the range and development of health informatics, with examples from the literature world wide covering the types of information involved, the areas of application, the impact of evidence based medicine and other professional issues, integrated information systems, and the needs of the public, patients and their carers. While medical informatics certainly comprises a major part of health informatics it is not the main focus of this paper. Medical informatics is the older term and involves the use of information technology and computing specifically for medical science research, and the diagnosis and treatment of disease involving, for example, X‐rays, imaging, resonance, and magnetic scanning techniques. Rather, the scope of this review is the literature relating to the wider concept of the management of information through the interdisciplinary application of information science and technology for the benefit of patients, scientists, managers, staff, and carers involved in the whole range of healthcare activity.

Details

Journal of Documentation, vol. 52 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0022-0418

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Article
Publication date: 1 December 1973

Kevin P. Jones

What is informatics? First it must be confessed that it seemed to form an excellent conference label. In this respect it may be compared with linguistic confections, like…

Abstract

What is informatics? First it must be confessed that it seemed to form an excellent conference label. In this respect it may be compared with linguistic confections, like Infochem and Infofair. Too many meetings are burdened with over‐long titles peppered with prepositions—was it a conference on…, or a symposium in…? Further, informatics appears to be acceptable in a wide variety of European languages: it could be argued that its adoption for the Co‐ordinate Indexing Group's annual conference was their modest contribution to European unity.

Details

Aslib Proceedings, vol. 25 no. 12
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0001-253X

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Article
Publication date: 5 March 2018

Peter Kokol, Kaija Saranto and Helena Blažun Vošner

The rapid development of eHealth requires the extension of existing health informatics competences sets. These competences are needed not only by health-care professionals…

Abstract

Purpose

The rapid development of eHealth requires the extension of existing health informatics competences sets. These competences are needed not only by health-care professionals but also by health-care consumers. The purpose of this paper is to analyse literature production of health informatics and eHealth competences/skills (EHCS).

Design/methodology/approach

Bibliometric analysis and mapping have been used as a form of distant reading approach in the manner to perform thematic analysis, identify gaps in knowledge and predict future trends.

Findings

This study shows that the literature production of health informatics and EHCS differs in bibliometric indicators, as well as in research content. Thematic analysis showed that medicine is the most productive subject area in both fields. However, health informatics competencies/skills are more oriented toward education, nursing, electronic health record and evidence-based practice, while EHCS cover health information technology, engineering, computer science and patient-centred care. The literature research production exhibits positive trend and is geographically widespread in both fields.

Research limitations/implications

The use of Scopus database might have led to different results if the authors had used Web of Science or Medline, because of the fact that different databases cover different lists of source titles. The authors used various search strings, and the most optimal one for their study; however, a different search string might result in slightly different outcomes. In addition, the thematic analysis has been performed on information source abstracts and titles only, as the analysis of full texts (if available) could lead to different results. Despite the fact that the thematic analysis has been performed by three researchers with different scientific backgrounds, the results of the analysis are subjective. On the other hand, the bibliometric analyses and comparison of health informatics and eHealth competences have never been done before and this study revealed some important gaps in research in both fields.

Practical implications

The World Health Organization defined four distinct but related components of eHealth: mobile health, health information systems, telemedicine and distance learning. While the research in telemedicine and health information systems seems to be well covered, the skills and competencies in mobile health and distant learning should be researched more extensively.

Social implications

More research in the skills and competencies associated with so-called connected health, a new subfield in eHealth research, is needed. The skills and competencies of how to better implement and use the services related to the management of chronic diseases, health coproduction and how to implement eHealth in developing countries are currently under research areas and with candidates for future research. For both health informatics competencies/skills and EHCS, we noted that more research is needed for personalised medicine, health coproduction, smart health, internet of things, internet of services and intelligent health systems.

Originality/value

The literature production on health informatics and EHCS has been analysed for the first time and been compared in a systemic way, using bibliometrics. The results reveal that current research directions as well as knowledge gaps could thus provide guidelines for further research.

Details

Kybernetes, vol. 47 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0368-492X

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Article
Publication date: 5 August 2014

Jane See Yin Lim, Shirley Agostinho, Barry Harper and Joe Chicharo

This study aims to investigate the perceptions, acceptance, usage and access to social media by students and academics in higher education in informatics programs in…

Abstract

Purpose

This study aims to investigate the perceptions, acceptance, usage and access to social media by students and academics in higher education in informatics programs in Malaysia. A conceptual model based on Connectivism and communities of practice (CoPs) learning theory was developed and were used as a basis of mapping the research questions to the design frameworks and the research outcomes. A significant outcome of this study will be the development of a design framework for implementing social media as supporting tools for student engagement and teaching and learning of informatics programs in higher education institutions (HEIs) in Malaysia.

Design/methodology/approach

A mixed-method research methodology with a significant survey research component was employed for this research. This methodology focused on collecting and analyzing quantitative and qualitative data to better understand the research problems. For this study, a mixed-method sequential transformative research strategy based on a QUAN-Qual model was used in the data collection process. Mixed-method research methodology is considered to be most appropriate for this study, as it allows the researcher to gather multiple forms of data from diverse audiences such as educators, administrators and students.

Findings

The findings show the close matched of the ownership, amount of hours spent online, types of social media technologies (SMTs) used and pattern of usage between informatics and non-informatics students. It also shows that many students and instructors have started to explore and accept the use of SMTs as a tool for engaging with their institution and their peers as well as for teaching and learning purposes. Innovative institutions need to understand the critical success factors and the barriers that restrict the implementation of SMTs within the HEI to take advantage of the opportunities offered by SMTs in higher education.

Research limitations/implications

The surveys and interview participant, in part, are self-selecting, so the data collected cannot be claimed to be representative of the population. However, because of the relatively large number of participants, it can be considered that the findings are indicative. Other limitation includes the depth of data that can be collected using this methodology.

Practical implications

There is wide range of social media usage in educational settings now being reported, but many issues are still unexamined. Limited studies have been focusing on the educators’ readiness, acceptance or refusal in integrating social media into their courses, the perceived effectiveness of the tools and student outcomes for their learning. The central outcome of this research will be the development of a design framework that will be used as a guide for Malaysian HEIs and informatics academics to engage students using SMTs in creating effective learning communities for informatics programs.

Social implications

The framework will have implication for the social interaction and engagement of students with their institution.

Originality/value

Very little work has been reported on student and academic engagement, their perspectives and perceived effectiveness of social media usage in higher education, especially in the Malaysia context. Most of the research focused only on the quantitative research with students from universities in the USA and Australia, with an emphasis mainly on student’s perception and acceptance. There are calls for more research to examine how social media is perceived and accepted by students and academics for teaching and learning, especially in Malaysia.

Details

Journal of Information, Communication and Ethics in Society, vol. 12 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1477-996X

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Book part
Publication date: 4 May 2018

Muhammad Arhami, Anita Desiani, Munawar and Raisah Hayati

Purpose – The purpose of this research is to study the ecological developments that are growing rapidly and are complemented by technological developments that make…

Abstract

Purpose – The purpose of this research is to study the ecological developments that are growing rapidly and are complemented by technological developments that make ecology a discipline which is able to collaborate, integrate, and use data for the development of science.

Design/Methodology/Approach – The method involves integration, analysis, and conclusion, drawing knowledge dissemination from heterogeneous ecological data that make the ecological research so complex requiring an approach to simplify the problem.

Findings – The data involved in ecology are very complex and diverse and spread from various sources, which are not mutually integrated so that a structured arrangement is required through the arrangement of computer-based data management.

Research Limitations/Implications – Eco-informatics is one of the options to manage the data, settings, and transform it into information and knowledge.

Details

Proceedings of MICoMS 2017
Type: Book
ISBN:

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Book part
Publication date: 10 November 2017

Bharat Mehra, Vandana Singh, Natasha Hollenbach and Robert P. Partee

This chapter discusses the application of community informatics (CI) principles in the rural Southern and Central Appalachian (SCA) region to further the teaching of…

Abstract

Purpose

This chapter discusses the application of community informatics (CI) principles in the rural Southern and Central Appalachian (SCA) region to further the teaching of information and communication technologies (ICT) literacy concepts in courses that formed part of two externally funded grants, “Information Technology Rural Librarian Master’s Scholarship Program Part I” (ITRL) and “Part II” (ITRL2), awarded by the Institute of Museum and Library Services’ (IMLS) Laura Bush 21st Century Librarian Program to the School of Information Sciences (SIS) at the University of Tennessee (UT).

Design/Methodology/Approach

The chapter documents ICT use in ITRL and ITRL2 to extend librarian technology literacy training, allowing these public information providers to become change agents in the twenty-first century. It discusses aspects of CI that influenced these two projects and shaped the training of future rural library leaders embedded in traditionally underrepresented areas to further social justice and progressive changes in the region’s rural communities.

Findings

The chapter demonstrates the role that CI principles played in the context of ITRL and ITRL2 from project inception to the graduation of the rural librarians with examples of tangible IT services/products that the students developed in their courses that were directly applicable and tailored to their SCA contexts.

Originality/Value

ITRL and ITRL2 provided a unique opportunity to apply a CI approach to train information librarians as agents of change in the SCA regions to further economic and cultural development via technology and management competencies. These change agents will continue to play a significant role in community building and community development efforts in the future.

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