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1 – 10 of 12
Article
Publication date: 10 May 2013

Richard P. Smiraglia and Charles van den Heuvel

This paper seeks to outline the central role of concepts in the knowledge universe, and the intertwining roles of works, instantiations, and documents. In particular the…

1466

Abstract

Purpose

This paper seeks to outline the central role of concepts in the knowledge universe, and the intertwining roles of works, instantiations, and documents. In particular the authors are interested in ontological and epistemological aspects of concepts and in the question to which extent there is a need for natural languages to link concepts to create meaningful patterns.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors describe the quest for the smallest elements of knowledge from a historical perspective. They focus on the metaphor of the universe of knowledge and its impact on classification and retrieval of concepts. They outline the major components of an elementary theory of knowledge interaction.

Findings

The paper outlines the major components of an elementary theory of knowledge interaction that is based on the structure of knowledge rather than on the content of documents, in which semantics becomes not a matter of synonymous concepts, but rather of coordinating knowledge structures. The evidence is derived from existing empirical research.

Originality/value

The paper shifts the bases for knowledge organization from a search for a universal order to an understanding of a universal structure within which many context‐dependent orders are possible.

Article
Publication date: 11 January 2013

Alon Friedman and Richard P. Smiraglia

The purpose of the research reported here is to improve comprehension of the socially‐negotiated identity of concepts in the domain of knowledge organization. Because…

1790

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of the research reported here is to improve comprehension of the socially‐negotiated identity of concepts in the domain of knowledge organization. Because knowledge organization as a domain has as its focus the order of concepts, both from a theoretical perspective and from an applied perspective, it is important to understand how the domain itself understands the meaning of a concept.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper provides an empirical demonstration of how the domain itself understands the meaning of a concept. The paper employs content analysis to demonstrate the ways in which concepts are portrayed in KO concept maps as signs, and they are subjected to evaluative semiotic analysis as a way to understand their meaning. The frame was the entire population of formal proceedings in knowledge organization – all proceedings of the International Society for Knowledge Organization's international conferences (1990‐2010) and those of the annual classification workshops of the Special Interest Group for Classification Research of the American Society for Information Science and Technology (SIG/CR).

Findings

A total of 344 concept maps were analyzed. There was no discernible chronological pattern. Most concept maps were created by authors who were professors from the USA, Germany, France, or Canada. Roughly half were judged to contain semiotic content. Peirceian semiotics predominated, and tended to convey greater granularity and complexity in conceptual terminology. Nodes could be identified as anchors of conceptual clusters in the domain; the arcs were identifiable as verbal relationship indicators. Saussurian concept maps were more applied than theoretical; Peirceian concept maps had more theoretical content.

Originality/value

The paper demonstrates important empirical evidence about the coherence of the domain of knowledge organization. Core values are conveyed across time through the concept maps in this population of conference papers.

Details

Journal of Documentation, vol. 69 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0022-0418

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 21 June 2019

Luís Miguel Oliveira Machado, Daniel Martínez-Ávila and Maria da Graça de Melo Simões

The purpose of this paper is to discuss the literature on concept theory in library and information science (LIS) from an epistemological perspective, ascribing each paper…

680

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to discuss the literature on concept theory in library and information science (LIS) from an epistemological perspective, ascribing each paper to an epistemological family and discussing their relevance in the context of the knowledge organization (KO) domain.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper adopts a hermeneutic approach for the analysis of the texts that compose the corpus of study following contingency and categorical analyses. More specifically, the paper works with Bardin’s contingency analysis and follows Hjørland’s families of epistemologies for the categorization.

Findings

The analysis corroborates the observations made for the last ten years about the scarcity of studies on concept theory in LIS and KO. However, the study also reveals an epistemological turn on concept theory since 2009 that could be considered a departure from the rationalist views that dominated the field and a continuation of a broader paradigm shift in LIS and KO. All analyzed papers except two follow pragmatist or historicist approaches.

Originality/value

This paper follows-up and systematizes the contributions to the LIS and KO fields on concept theory mainly during the last decade. The epistemological analysis reveals the dominant views in this paradigm shift and the main authors and trends that are present in the LIS literature on concept theory.

Details

Journal of Documentation, vol. 75 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0022-0418

Keywords

Content available
Article
Publication date: 1 December 2006

Helen Gourkova

131

Abstract

Details

Library Management, vol. 27 no. 9
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0143-5124

Keywords

Content available
Article
Publication date: 1 February 2003

Don Revill

207

Abstract

Details

New Library World, vol. 104 no. 1/2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0307-4803

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 14 September 2015

Daniel Martínez-Ávila, Richard Smiraglia, Hur-Li Lee and Melodie Fox

The purpose of this paper is to discuss and shed light on the following questions: What is an author? Is it a person who writes? Or, is it, in information, an iconic…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to discuss and shed light on the following questions: What is an author? Is it a person who writes? Or, is it, in information, an iconic taxonomic designation (some might say a “classification”) for a group of writings that are recognized by the public in some particular way? What does it mean when a search engine, or catalog, asks a user to enter the name of an author? And how does that accord with the manner in which the data have been entered in association with the names of the entities identified with the concept of authorship?

Design/methodology/approach

The authors use several cases as bases of phenomenological discourse analysis, combining as best the authors can components of eidetic bracketing (a Husserlian technique for isolating noetic reduction) with Foucauldian discourse analysis. The two approaches are not sympathetic or together cogent, so the authors present them instead as alternative explanations alongside empirical evidence. In this way the authors are able to isolate components of iconic “authorship” and then subsequently engage them in discourse.

Findings

An “author” is an iconic name associated with a class of works. An “author” is a role in public discourse between a set of works and the culture that consumes them. An “author” is a role in cultural sublimation, or a power broker in deabstemiation. An “author” is last, if ever, a person responsible for the intellectual content of a published work. The library catalog’s attribution of “author” is at odds with the Foucauldian discursive comprehension of the role of an “author.”

Originality/value

One of the main assets of this paper is the combination of Foucauldian discourse analysis with phenomenological analysis for the study of the “author.” The authors turned to Foucauldian discourse analysis to discover the loci of power in the interactions of the public with the named authorial entities. The authors also looked to phenomenological analysis to consider the lived experience of users who encounter the same named authorial entities. The study of the “author” in this combined way facilitated the revelation of new aspects of the role of authorship in search engines and library catalogs.

Details

Journal of Documentation, vol. 71 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0022-0418

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 10 July 2017

Daniel Martínez-Ávila and John M. Budd

The purpose of this paper is to update and review the concept of warrant in Library and Information Science (LIS) and to introduce the concept of epistemic warrant from…

1100

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to update and review the concept of warrant in Library and Information Science (LIS) and to introduce the concept of epistemic warrant from philosophy. Epistemic warrant can be used to assess the content of a work; and therefore, it can be a complement to existing warrants, such as literary warrant, in the development of controlled vocabularies. In this proposal, the authors aim to activate a theoretical discussion on warrant in order to revise and improve the validity of the concept of warrant from the user and classifier context to the classificationist context.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors have conducted an extensive literary review and close reading of the concept of warrant in LIS and knowledge organization in order to detect the different stances and gaps in which the concept of epistemic warrant might apply. The authors adopted an epistemological approach, in the vein of some of the previous commenters on warrant, such as Hope Olson and Birger Hjørland, and built upon the theoretical framework of different authors working with the concept of warrant outside knowledge organization, such as Alvin Plantinga and Alvin Goldman.

Findings

There are some authors and critics in the literature that have voiced for a more epistemological approach to warrant (in opposition to a predominantly ontological approach). In this sense, epistemic warrant would be an epistemological warrant and also a step forward toward pragmatism in a prominently empiricist context such as the justification of the inclusion of terms in a controlled vocabulary. Epistemic warrant can be used to complement literary warrant in the development of controlled vocabularies as well as in the classification of works.

Originality/value

This paper presents an exhaustive update and revision of the concept of warrant, analyzing, systematizing, and reviewing the different warrants discussed in the LIS literary warrant in a critical way. The concept of epistemic warrant for categorizational activities is introduced to the LIS field for the first time. This paper, and the proposal of epistemic warrant, has the potential to contribute to the theoretical and practical discussions on the development of controlled vocabularies and assessment of the content of works.

Details

Journal of Documentation, vol. 73 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0022-0418

Keywords

Book part
Publication date: 20 July 2005

Charles B. Osburn

The definition of the collection employed in this essay accounts for it as an assemblage of information sources made accessible systematically in any format by the library…

Abstract

The definition of the collection employed in this essay accounts for it as an assemblage of information sources made accessible systematically in any format by the library or information center for the purposes of the community that is to intended to serve.

Details

Advances in Library Administration and Organization
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-84950-338-9

Article
Publication date: 31 August 2012

Monika Pietras and Lyn Robinson

The purpose of this paper is to examine the concept of the “musical work”, and its consequences for library/information provision.

901

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to examine the concept of the “musical work”, and its consequences for library/information provision.

Design/methodology/approach

Analysis of journal and monograph literature is supported by interviews with music editors, examination of documents, and self‐reflection on music cataloguing practice.

Findings

The nature of a musical work is shown to be complex, and influenced by many contextual factors. Phenomenological and ontological models can prove useful in understanding practical issues of information provision. The work of music editors has a strong relation to that of cataloguers and curators. Bibliographic models such as FRBR (Functional Requirements for Bibliographic Records) can gain from, and contribute to, music information, through the centrality of the concept of “work”.

Research limitations/implications

The literature review is selective rather than comprehensive.

Practical implications

The study provides direct guidance for library/information practitioners in the music domain, and an insight into issues of relevance to information provision in any specialized subject.

Originality/value

The paper is a contribution to the literature on the application of philosophical and conceptual analysis to documents and bibliographic entities in specialized subject areas, and to domain analysis.

Article
Publication date: 1 October 2001

Jens‐Erik Mai

This paper explains at least some of the major problems related to the subject indexing process and proposes a new approach to understanding the process, which is…

2482

Abstract

This paper explains at least some of the major problems related to the subject indexing process and proposes a new approach to understanding the process, which is ordinarily described as a process that takes a number of steps. The subject is first determined, then it is described in a few sentences and, lastly, the description of the subject is converted into the indexing language. It is argued that this typical approach characteristically lacks an understanding of what the central nature of the process is. Indexing is not a neutral and objective representation of a document’s subject matter but the representation of an interpretation of a document for future use. Semiotics is offered here as a framework for understanding the “interpretative” nature of the subject indexing process. By placing this process within Peirce’s semiotic framework of ideas and terminology, a more detailed description of the process is offered which shows that the uncertainty generally associated with this process is created by the fact that the indexer goes through a number of steps and creates the subject matter of the document during this process. The creation of the subject matter is based on the indexer’s social and cultural context. The paper offers an explanation of what occurs in the indexing process and suggests that there is only little certainty to its result.

Details

Journal of Documentation, vol. 57 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0022-0418

Keywords

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