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An Exploration of Opportunities for a Theory of Information Inadequacy

Abstract : Our everyday experiences show that the lack of needed information in various human affairs may give rise to consequences that we would like to avoid – e.g. the 2004 Tsunami in Southeast Asia. However, we still do not have a coherent theoretical body that addresses such experiences of information inadequacy as this changes everything in respect to the current conception of the information society, where technology plays a central role. To this end, we provide an initial exploration of opportunities for such a theory: when needed information is not available in human affairs, for any reason. We start with diagnoses of five existing central theoretical bodies that constitute promising candidates to account for instances of information inadequacy. The results show though that these do not offer a comprehensive account for situations where needed information is missing. Secondly, an empirical investigation was conducted, utilizing grounded theory approach, where fifty cases of information inadequacy were analysed. This revealed a number of patterns of plausible causes of information inadequacies in human affairs, which offer a preliminary foundation for a future theory of information inadequacy. This result suggests that information inadequacies may be understood as various instances of information-lack and information-overflow. These two, in turn, include numerous factors that cause information inadequacies, ranging from political and cultural structures, through human individual capabilities, and ending with procedural set-ups and technological artefacts. We advocate that further research should be conducted to explore various instances of information inadequacy aimed to the formulation of a coherent theory.
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Submitted on : Thursday, January 31, 2019 - 2:21:11 PM
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Miranda Kajtazi, Darek Haftor. An Exploration of Opportunities for a Theory of Information Inadequacy. 13th IFIP International Conference on Human Choice and Computers (HCC13), Sep 2018, Poznan, Poland. pp.384-394, ⟨10.1007/978-3-319-99605-9_29⟩. ⟨hal-02001926⟩



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