A proposed methodology for the conceptualization, operationalization, and empirical validation of the concept of information need

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Abstract

Introduction. The purpose of this paper is to propose a methodology to conceptualize, operationalize, and empirically validate the concept of information need.
Method. The proposed methodology makes use of both qualitative and quantitative perspectives, and includes a broad array of approaches such as literature reviews, expert opinions, focus groups, and content validation. It also involves sophisticated assessment of construct validity including substantive and structural aspects.
Analysis. Research on conceptualization and assessment of information need presents a rich tradition. To further enhance the scope of this, a methodology is proposed; a variant of the methodology proposed in this paper has been used in other disciplines with promising results.
Results. Ways in which this methodology can be applied to the concept of information need are demonstrated. Some challenges associated with this methodology are noted, such as significant investments of time and labour.
Conclusions. It is hoped that using this methodology in future studies will be an important step towards developing an empirically testable construct of information need. This approach will also be a useful addition to the methodological repertoire available to information researchers.
LanguageEnglish
Article number761
Pages1-16
Number of pages16
JournalInformation Research
Volume22
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2017

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title = "A proposed methodology for the conceptualization, operationalization, and empirical validation of the concept of information need",
abstract = "Introduction. The purpose of this paper is to propose a methodology to conceptualize, operationalize, and empirically validate the concept of information need.Method. The proposed methodology makes use of both qualitative and quantitative perspectives, and includes a broad array of approaches such as literature reviews, expert opinions, focus groups, and content validation. It also involves sophisticated assessment of construct validity including substantive and structural aspects.Analysis. Research on conceptualization and assessment of information need presents a rich tradition. To further enhance the scope of this, a methodology is proposed; a variant of the methodology proposed in this paper has been used in other disciplines with promising results.Results. Ways in which this methodology can be applied to the concept of information need are demonstrated. Some challenges associated with this methodology are noted, such as significant investments of time and labour.Conclusions. It is hoped that using this methodology in future studies will be an important step towards developing an empirically testable construct of information need. This approach will also be a useful addition to the methodological repertoire available to information researchers.",
author = "Waseem Afzal",
year = "2017",
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language = "English",
volume = "22",
pages = "1--16",
journal = "Information Research",
issn = "1368-1613",
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AB - Introduction. The purpose of this paper is to propose a methodology to conceptualize, operationalize, and empirically validate the concept of information need.Method. The proposed methodology makes use of both qualitative and quantitative perspectives, and includes a broad array of approaches such as literature reviews, expert opinions, focus groups, and content validation. It also involves sophisticated assessment of construct validity including substantive and structural aspects.Analysis. Research on conceptualization and assessment of information need presents a rich tradition. To further enhance the scope of this, a methodology is proposed; a variant of the methodology proposed in this paper has been used in other disciplines with promising results.Results. Ways in which this methodology can be applied to the concept of information need are demonstrated. Some challenges associated with this methodology are noted, such as significant investments of time and labour.Conclusions. It is hoped that using this methodology in future studies will be an important step towards developing an empirically testable construct of information need. This approach will also be a useful addition to the methodological repertoire available to information researchers.

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