Skip to main content

Über dieses Buch

Information behavior has emerged as an important aspect of human life, however our knowledge and understanding of it is incomplete and underdeveloped scientifically. Research on the topic is largely contemporary in focus and has generally not incorporated results from other disciplines.

In this monograph Spink provides a new understanding of information behavior by incorporating related findings, theories and models from social sciences, psychology and cognition. In her presentation, she argues that information behavior is an important instinctive sociocognitive ability that can only be fully understood with a highly interdisciplinary approach. The leitmotivs of her examination are three important research questions: First, what is the evolutionary, biological and developmental nature of information behavior? Second, what is the role of instinct versus environment in shaping information behavior? And, third, how have information behavior capabilities evolved and developed over time?

Written for researchers in information science as well as social and cognitive sciences, Spink’s controversial text lays the foundation for a new interdisciplinary theoretical perspective on information behavior that will not only provide a more holistic framework for this field but will also impact those sciences, and thus also open up many new research directions.



Chapter 1. Introduction

This book takes the reader on a long journey. We travel into the world of information behavior where humans seek, forage, organize and use information. We also journey from the beginnings of human existence on planet Earth to the twenty-first century of today. On this journey the reader will gradually appreciate that the scope of this book is broad and the tone of the book is quite theoretical in nature.
Amanda Spink

Chapter 2. Information Behavior Framework

As McBrearty and Brooks (2000) argue above, knowledge sharing and human information behaviors originated in early humans and are not just a twentieth century phenomenon. However in our twenty-first century information society when we think about our behavior we do not generally think about our information-related behavior. When using our information behavior abilities such as information finding, organizing and using, with all the benefits they entail, we often think more about the technologies such as the Internet or Web that are designed to support our information behaviors.
Amanda Spink

Chapter 3. Evolutionary Foundation

The quotation above provides some insight into the nature and importance of information behavior for early humans . Information behavior allowed them to learn about the behavior of animals and to create categories of information that were represented in different types of animals depicted in paleoart on cave walls.
Amanda Spink

Chapter 4. Instinct Versus Environment

Blumberg’s words provide a valuable insight into the latest thinking on the role of instinct and environment in determining human behavior. A key issue for human behaviorists is examining how instinct versus environment shape human behavior (Blumberg, 2005). The concept of behavior and the role of instinct and what it means has been a major debate in the behavioral sciences.
Amanda Spink

Chapter 5. Human Cognition and Social Behavior

Alexander’s words set the scene for exploring more about the broad nature and attributes of information behavior. In previous chapters we explored how Information behavior emerged in early humans as an evolved cognitive mechanism with instinctive and environmental dimensions underpinned by a motivation to control motivation to control the environment. We now focus more closely on the human cognitive and social level in Fig.​ 2.​2 that highlights Information behavior as a complex phenomenon with many broad attributes and dimensions that we are only just beginning to understand.
Amanda Spink

Chapter 6. Lifetime DevelopmentLifetime Development

Blumberg’s words above highlight a key challenge for information behaviorists – How can we understand the developmental patterns of information behavior?
Amanda Spink

Chapter 7. Information Behavior Sub-processes

Sir Arthur Stanley Eddington was obviously a phenomenologist. In the vein of Eddington, this book is a first stab at devising theories to account for origins and reconstructing the creature. But how do we reconstruct such a creature, how do we account for its origins and say what it has become? Based on what we know so far about the origins and development of information behavior, we have a theoretical framework with evolutionary, instinctive, socio-cognitive and lifetime developmental dimensions.
Amanda Spink

Chapter 8. Supporting Information Behavior over the Ages

As Pirolli reminds us, many forces shaped the emergence of information behavior and many artifacts were developed over the centuries to support information behavior in different cultures . Information behavior has been an important aspect of human behavior from early humans such as Homo sapiens and also for the people of today.
Amanda Spink

Chapter 9. Key Propositions and Conclusions

This book has broadly explored many diverse and interesting issues, and has proposed new theories and ideas. At the beginning of the book we said that such a treatise will probably raise more important and interesting questions than will be answered. Raising important and interesting questions without providing all the answers may be frustrating for the reader (and the author), but does provide a necessary and critical key beginning for confronting future research challenges.
Amanda Spink


Weitere Informationen

Premium Partner