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Article

Tim Gorichanaz, Kiersten F. Latham and Elizabeth Wood

The authors discuss the lifeworld as a research concept for the field of information behaviour, which serves to problematise the concept of unit of analysis. In so doing…

Abstract

Purpose

The authors discuss the lifeworld as a research concept for the field of information behaviour, which serves to problematise the concept of unit of analysis. In so doing, the authors demonstrate how the lifeworld can be adopted as a unit of analysis in information behaviour research, that is, how research can be based in the lifeworld rather than merely looking at the lifeworld. The paper aims to discuss these issues.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors first situate our discussion in the current of information behaviour scholarship. The authors then introduce the concepts of lifeworld and unit of analysis and consider how they intersect. Next, to show the importance of the lifeworld, the authors present two recent studies in which the lifeworld emerged. Finally, the authors discuss how lifeworld-based research can be conducted more conscientiously.

Findings

Though many research approaches deal with lived experience in one way or another, they tend not to fully grasp these experiences. As opposed to units of analysis such as individual, social group, person-in-situation, etc., using lifeworld as a unit of analysis allows phenomena to be researched holistically and without reductionism.

Research limitations/implications

The authors limit the discussion to the concept of the lifeworld as developed by Husserl, the concept’s originator. The lifeworld has been discussed and extended by other authors since, but this work is not considered here. The viewpoint is offered as a supplementary perspective, meant to be enriching to our field of study, rather than divisive.

Originality/value

This is the first time the concept of the lifeworld has been fully explicated in information science. As the authors discuss, two recent information behaviour studies that “discovered” the lifeworld through their analysis. Future studies that attend to the lifeworld from the start have the capacity to build on this work and extend the horizons of information science.

Details

Journal of Documentation, vol. 74 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0022-0418

Keywords

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Article

Kiersten F. Latham, Jenna Hartel and Tim Gorichanaz

Americans increasingly feel a sense of wonder at the universe; meditation and yoga are on the rise; and a field known as Contemplative Studies has emerged. These…

Abstract

Purpose

Americans increasingly feel a sense of wonder at the universe; meditation and yoga are on the rise; and a field known as Contemplative Studies has emerged. These indicators, among others, suggest a groundswell of interest in contemplative practice and contemplative experience and raise intriguing questions for information and Information Studies. Against this backdrop, this paper asks: How might Information Studies contribute to these developments? What is the relationship between information and contemplation? What can be explored on this research frontier?

Design/methodology/approach

This conceptual paper is based upon a synthesis of recent writings from the field of Contemplative Studies as well as conceptual analysis of selected papers and themes in Information Studies. It draws from discussion that occurred at a Session for Interaction and Engagement at the 2018 iConference, entitled “Contemplating Information in the Pleasurable and the Profound” (Latham et al., 2018). The authors' creative thinking and personal contemplative practices also infuse and fortify the work.

Findings

Popular and academic contemplative movements are afoot, and Information Studies has an opportunity to participate or be left behind. The field of Contemplative Studies has established the foundational concepts that can serve as contextual material for information research into contemplation. Upon closer inspection, Information Studies has already broached the topic of contemplation at various points in its history, theory, institutional practices, and information behavior research. The conceptual points of departure for a research frontier are articulated.

Originality/value

Beyond data, information, and knowledge are deeper and more profound aims, such as wisdom, which is related to contemplation. This paper supplies a rationale, scholarly community, conceptual resources, historical precedents, and guiding questions for bridging information and contemplation.

Details

Journal of Documentation, vol. 76 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0022-0418

Keywords

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Article

Tim Gorichanaz and Kiersten F. Latham

The purpose of this paper is to advance document ontology and epistemology by proposing a framework for analysing documents from multiple perspectives of research and practice.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to advance document ontology and epistemology by proposing a framework for analysing documents from multiple perspectives of research and practice.

Design/methodology/approach

Understanding is positioned as an epistemic aim of documents, which can be approached through phenomenology.

Findings

A phenomenological framework for document analysis is articulated. Key concepts in this framework are include intrinsic information, extrinsic information, abtrinsic information, and adtrinsic information. Information and meaning are distinguished. Finally, documents are positioned as part of a structural framework, which includes individual documents, parts of documents (docemes and docs), and systems of documents.

Research limitations/implications

Scholarship is extended with an eye toward holism; still, it is possible that important aspects of documents are overlooked. This framework serves as a stepping-stone along the continual refinement of methods for understanding documents.

Practical implications

Both scholars and practitioners can consider documents through this framework. This will lead to further co-understanding and collaboration, as well as better education and a deeper understanding of all manner of document experiences.

Originality/value

This paper fills a need for a common way to conceptualise documents that respects the numerous ways in which documents exist and are used and examined. Such coherence is vital for the advancement of document scholarship and is the promotion of document literacy in society, which is becoming increasingly important.

Details

Journal of Documentation, vol. 72 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0022-0418

Keywords

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Article

Kiersten F. Latham

The purpose of this paper is to invite further consideration of how people experience documents. By offering a model from Reader Response theory – Louise Rosenblatt's…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to invite further consideration of how people experience documents. By offering a model from Reader Response theory – Louise Rosenblatt's Transactional Theory of Reading – as well as examples from research on numinous experiences with museum objects, the author hopes to open further avenues of information behavior studies about people and documents. The goal is to incorporate more aspects of lived experience and the aesthetic into practice with and research of documents.

Design/methodology/approach

Theoretical scope includes Louise Rosenblatt's Transactional Theory of Reading, John Dewey's concepts of transaction and experience and lived experience concepts/methods derived from phenomenology.

Findings

Rosenblatt's Transactional Theory explicates the continuum of reader response, from the efferent to the aesthetic, stating that the act of “reading” (experience) involves a transaction between the reader (person) and the text (document). Each transaction is a unique experience in which the reader and text continuously act and are acted upon by each other. This theory of reading translates well into the realm of investigating the lived experience of documents and in that context, a concrete example and suggested strategies for future study are provided.

Originality/value

This paper provides a holistic approach to understanding lived experience with documents and introduces the concept of person-document transaction. It inserts the wider notion of document into a more specific theory of reading, expanding its use beyond the borders of text, print and literature. By providing an example of real document experiences and applying Rosenblatt's continuum, the value of this paper is in opening new avenues for information behavior inquiries.

Details

Journal of Documentation, vol. 70 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0022-0418

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Article

Kiersten F. Latham and Jodi Kearns

The aim of this paper is to offer a platform for thinking about the reference interaction experience by borrowing from museum studies literature, particularly from a…

Abstract

Purpose

The aim of this paper is to offer a platform for thinking about the reference interaction experience by borrowing from museum studies literature, particularly from a holistic understanding of the museum visitor’s experience.

Design/methodology/approach

The goal of this paper is to offer a platform for thinking about the reference interaction experience by borrowing from museum studies literature, particularly from a holistic understanding of the museum visitor’s experience.

Findings

Object knowledge framework-reference (OKF-Ref) enables reference staff to connect patrons with resources to enable deeper thinking and research.

Practical implications

OKF-Ref seeks to permit reference transactions as experiences rooted in synchronous individual, group and material potential connections made between resources and information seekers.

Originality/value

New considerations in lived reference experience encourages reference librarians to think about the whole experience of reference interactions, allowing intermediaries to be proactive toward the goal of unified experiences for patrons.

Details

Reference Reviews, vol. 30 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0950-4125

Keywords

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Article

Kiersten F. Latham

The purpose of this article is to understand the meaning of museum objects from an information perspective. Links are made from Buckland's conceptual information framework…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this article is to understand the meaning of museum objects from an information perspective. Links are made from Buckland's conceptual information framework as a semiotic to museum object as “document” and finally to user experience of these museum “documents”. The aim is to provide a new lens through which museum studies researchers can understand museum objects and for LIS researchers to accept museum objects as another form of document to be studied.

Design/methodology/approach

A conceptual and comparative analysis of Buckland's information typology as a semiotic. Outcome of analysis forms a model of understanding the museum object as a “document” that is accessed by users on a continuum of experience.

Findings

Michael Buckland's information typology is insightful and useful for a broad understanding of what all heritage institutions have in common: the physical object. Buckland helps us see the museum as an information system, the museum object as a document, and the multidimensional use of the concept information and its semiotic ramifications.

Originality/value

Buckland's typology is important to an understanding of the museum system and museum object in both LIS and museum studies. The concept of “document” opens up a broader perspective, which creates, rather than limits understandings of the human relationship with information. This expanded concept of “document” as sign/semiotic helps us understand user experience in ways not previously explored in the convergence of museums and information studies, from the practical to the theoretical. In this inclusive sense, Buckland's concept of document is a unifying theoretical concept for museums, libraries, and archives.

Details

Journal of Documentation, vol. 68 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0022-0418

Keywords

Content available

Abstract

Details

Information Experience in Theory and Design
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-83909-368-5

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Article

Brady Lund and Ting Wang

Considerable overlap exists between the disciplines of library and information science and museum studies. Exploiting the overlap and examining those areas were…

Abstract

Purpose

Considerable overlap exists between the disciplines of library and information science and museum studies. Exploiting the overlap and examining those areas were library/museum instruction courses diverge may provide valuable insights for how to improve the quality of these courses and better prepare students for instructional roles in both disciplines.

Design/methodology/approach

Word frequency and thematic analysis of the instructional course descriptions for all 52 American Library Association-accredited Master of Library and Information Science programs in the USA and 49 museum studies and affiliated (e.g. MA in anthropology with museum studies concentration) programs is performed.

Findings

Each discipline has some specific language to describe tasks specific to itself (e.g. museums), but these comprise a small percentage of the total language usage. Among other terms and themes, overlap occurs at a rate of about 50%. The remaining 35-45% of terms and themes reveal areas that are emphasized in only one discipline, but could be beneficial to incorporate in the curriculum/content in both disciplines.

Research limitations/implications

This research builds on a growing corpus of work demonstrating relations between museum studies and library and information science, and their status within a metadiscipline of information; this research presents a comparison of course content that may inform future curriculum/content development.

Originality/value

To the best of the authors’ knowledge, no study of this type has been performed with museum studies courses, nor has a comparison between the two disciplines been investigated at this level.

Details

Information and Learning Sciences, vol. 120 no. 7/8
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2398-5348

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Article

Jim Berryman

The purpose of this paper is twofold. First, to investigate the documentality of human remains in museum and research collections. Second, to provide a rationale for a…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is twofold. First, to investigate the documentality of human remains in museum and research collections. Second, to provide a rationale for a processual model of documentation, which can account for their repatriation and eventual burial.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper uses a multidisciplinary approach to examine the repatriation issue. It considers an ethical argument developed to support claims for repatriation: the nominal identification of a body as a universal criterion for its burial. Based on Igor Kopytoff’s processual model of commoditisation, it looks to cultural anthropology to help explain how objects can move between a document and non-document state.

Findings

Human remains can be understood as examples of information-as-thing. However, while document theory can readily account for the expanding realm of documentation, it cannot adequately accommodate instances where documentality is revoked, and when something ceases to be a document. When a human biological specimen is returned, the process that made it serve as a document is effectively reversed. When remains are interred, they revert to their primary standing, as people. The process of becoming a document is therefore not unidirectional, and document status not permanent.

Research limitations/implications

The implications of a processual model of documentation are discussed. Such a model must be able to account for things as they move into and out of the document state, and where the characteristics of documentality change through time.

Originality/value

This paper explores problematic material not usually discussed in relation to document theory. The repatriation movement poses a challenge to a discourse predicated on documentation as a progressively expanding field.

Details

Journal of Documentation, vol. 76 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0022-0418

Keywords

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