terça-feira, dezembro 12, 2006

Corporate Values and Employee Cynicism

Via HBS Working Knowledge - Cha, Sandra E. & Edmondson, A. C. (2006). When values backfire: Leadership, attribution, and disenchantment in a values-driven organization. The Leadership Quarterly, vol. 17, pp. 57-78:
"Theory on charismatic leaders suggests that shared values play an important role in promoting employee effort and organizational performance. This article proposes a theoretical model to identify conditions under which charismatic leadership and values inadvertently give rise to employee disenchantment, despite the good intentions of leaders and followers."

terça-feira, novembro 21, 2006

Information Space for Europe

eEurope - A single European Information Space:
"This pillar combines regulatory and other instruments at the Commission’s disposal to create a modern, market-oriented regulatory framework for the digital economy."

quarta-feira, novembro 15, 2006

Blogging as a research tool - ethnography

[via Lorenz Khazaleh] Erkan Saka (2006). Blogging as a Research Tool for Ethnographic Fieldwork. Paper submitted to the annual conference of the Association of Internet Researchers, Internet Research 7.0: Internet Convergences, Brisbane, Qld, Australia, September 27 - 30, 2006:
"This presentation argues that blogging emerges as a new research tool for the ones conducting ethnographic fieldwork. Moreover, I argue throughout my paper that new media with a particular emphasis in blogging will have even larger consequences for the discipline of anthropology. In order to substantiate my main argument I focus on these issues: a) Blogging might be a remedy to the anxiety of being in ‘after the fact’ that is shared by many anthropologists. Blogging takes place in the present tense while actively engaging with ‘the fact’; b) blogging brings immediate feedback c) not only from the limited scholarly circles but from a wider public/audience d) which exposes the ethnographer to a much more effective issue of accountability. Moreover, e) blogging urges to see motives in a more regular sense, thus creates a strong sense of regularity f) that forces the ethnographer to produce on a regular basis g) with a constant appeal to narrate what would normally remain fragments of fieldnotes. In addition to depending on scholarly sources of interest, this paper exploits the presenter’s own experience of blogging during his fieldwork."
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sábado, novembro 04, 2006

gatering info to Lyon

Next week i'll be in Lyon (SINCT project). While preparing things to get my way around the city, i've started collecting pieces of information that can help me move around to an unknown place.
For getting a sense of the city i've started in Flickr and look for photos tagged with lyon (...i'm already seduced by it). After cheking prices for companies flying from Lisbon to Lyon, accepting the suggestion from a Lyon project partner for lodging, i'm now looking for other practicalities (weather, maps, what to do, transportation in the city,... and wi-fi internet access ;). Do have any suggestions / tips / must see / good places (not expensive) to eat?...
What do you do before going on a work trip to an unknown place?...

PS - And because of my passion for Paris (and good chocolate too ;-) ended up in paris breakfasts.

sábado, outubro 28, 2006

public internet spaces (in Portugal)

Taking place in FIL Lisbon, on the 3 & 4 of November, organized by UMIC (Agência para a Sociedade do Conhecimento) to show and disseminate the network of internet spaces, financed with public fundings (more then 800).

sexta-feira, outubro 27, 2006

weekend readings

Bacon, C. J. and Fitzgerald, B. (2001). A systemic framework for the field of information systems. SIGMIS Database 32(2),pp. 46-67. [DOI= http://doi.acm.org/10.1145/506732.506738]

Carroll, J. M. and Swatman, P. A. (2000). Structured-case: a methodological framework for building theory in information systems research. European Journal of Information Systems, 9(4), pp. 235-242. [DOI= http://dx.doi.org/10.1057/palgrave.ejis.3000374]


segunda-feira, outubro 23, 2006

crossing the divides

Dervin, B. & Reinhard, C.D. (2006). "Researchers and practitioners talk about users and each other. Making user and audience studies matter—paper 1" Information Research, 12(1) paper 286:
"This paper reports on a qualitative study that compared what experts in three fields, library and information science, human computer interaction and communication and media studies, described as their big unanswered questions about users and audiences of information, library, electronic, communication and media systems and texts. It also compares what these experts thought about each other and the difficulties of crossing the divides between disciplines or fields and between research and practice."
"That users by any other name (...) increasingly have greater and greater control over their access and use of all manner of information and entertainment systems. In this sense they are no longer best conceptualized as users or as audiences but rather as persons with agency. While in the past access was highly constrained both in space and in time by institutional availability, now these independent agents may surf the planet and beyond at their own whims. This is so even when we acknowledge that all users are unwittingly or wittingly constrained by political economies that limit both arrays of offerings, modes of access and availabilities of specific contents."
"The study reported here is part of a larger multi-stage project, a dialogic surround of how researchers and practitioners in three fields look at: a) the big unanswered questions about users; b) the gaps that stand between them in finding value from each other's work; and c) the barriers to collaborating in the application of user research to system development, implementation and design."

sexta-feira, setembro 29, 2006

sexta-feira, agosto 25, 2006

There could be...

... no better way to start my holidays. Just received the mail saying:

"We are pleased to inform that your fellowship application submited to FCT was evaluated positively."


quarta-feira, agosto 23, 2006

extending information spaces

Today my information space took me to Umea, Sweden, where Lilia was making a presentation on her research (weblogs at Microsoft). Following short message (GoogleTalk), into her digital space for more details (weblog), and to the presentation venue: HumLab.

There i had a link for the video stream, and a contact for Skype. Guess because i'm inside my organizational firewall i could not use the streaming video so i went for the skype contact and met Stephanie that guided me during the rest of the connection. Although i had Lilia's slides (she «left them» at her blog) one get's the feeling of being blind (i.e. not knowing when to change to another slide, when she is prssing a link that takes the audience to another space).

More then the presentation by itself, today i made some more progress on my own work, because of this experience. Wanting very much to establish connections due to topic research, makes one go around try all the possible ways of «being there». Having people anticipating the interest of others, helps create «around ways» for enlarging attendees presence and engagement (even farway ones).

Studying information spaces requires an holistic view of:
  • individuals (their motivations, their skills, their networks, their interests... their own information spaces)
  • infrastructures (acess, barriers... infrastructures that support information spaces)
  • organization (culture, norms and rules «to get work done»... provided organizational information spaces)
So much more that i have to work out... just because i was here and went there. Yes! Research is fun :-)

domingo, julho 23, 2006

from expats' info needs to IM in expat cycle

Submission of complete paper just finished. Expecting for the results. In the mean time, here's the extended abstract:

PS [06/Ago/2006] - The paper is online at the conference site or you can see it in here :-)

quarta-feira, julho 19, 2006

space and time in information seeking

Savolainen, R. (2006). "Spatial factors as contextual qualifiers of information seeking". Information Research, 11(4), paper 261:

"Typically, an individual's local information field consists of an interpersonal communication network and information terminals (e.g., computers providing access to the Internet), both of which are embedded within a physical context. The physical context in organizations serves to stabilize an individual's information field, and largely determines the nature of the information to which individuals are regularly exposed."

"As individuals become more focused in their information seeking they change the nature of their information field to support seeking of information related to particular purposes. This interpretation significantly expands the applicability of the concept of information fields by showing that information seekers may rethink the role of spatial factors."

"The concept of information pathways differs from information fields in that the former is more dynamic and active, focusing on an individual's actions in selecting information sources over time. A pathway may be understood as the route someone follows in the pursuit of answers to questions within an information field."

"Local communities both enable and constrain information seeking. Spatial factors are related to social ones such as norms and values reproduced in the local community and the conceptions of useful or useless information sources."

Information Source Horizon: "This construct refers to a set of information sources and channels of which the actor is aware and of which he or she may have obtained use experiences over the years. (...) When construing an information source horizon, the actor judges the relevance of the information sources available in the perceived information environment and selects a set of sources and channels, for example, to resolve a problematic issue at hand."

activity theory

Wilson, T.D. (2006). "A re-examination of information seeking behaviour in the context of activity theory". Information Research, 11(4), paper 260:

Activity theory is "(...) a conceptual framework within which different theoretical perspectives may be employed. Typically, it is suggested that several methods of data collection should be employed and that the time frame for investigation should be long enough for the full range of contextual issues to emerge. Activity theory offers not only a useful conceptual framework, but also a coherent terminology to be shared by researchers, and a rapidly developing body of literature in associated disciplines."

domingo, julho 02, 2006

Organizing small digital Information Spaces

Aplication using real life information behaviours for organizing digital information to re-arrange desktop files :-)

sábado, junho 10, 2006

[event] Open Knowledge, Free Society

«Open Knowledge, Free Society», 3rd ONLINE Conference - CyberSociety Observatory:
"The thematic direction of the congress was elaborated by the Scientific Committee throughout the last months. Under the title Open Knowledge, Free Society and with an editorial line of referent, the cyber-social will be situated again in the point of analysis. Undoubtedly this intends to continue the way initiated with the two previous congresses, wondering what is and how the society of knowledge is being built (or will be built). Thus, in November, we will advance another step in this progression and up date ourselves with the movements and most current unrests of cyber-society, wondering which is its nature and reflecting around the present and future of knowledge in this Era of Information. Is a free or open knowledge possible? Which are the bases of these approaches, which are their goals and which could be their consequences?"
The call for Working Groups in spanish, portuguese, and english, is open until the 30 of June. The Congress will take place online, during 2 weeks of November. Multidisciplinary teams are welcomed :-)

quarta-feira, junho 07, 2006

ANT: method

Excerto de uma conversa sobre Actor Network Theory, entre um Professor e um Aluno, na página de Bruno Latour:

"S — So why is it called a ‘theory’, then, if it says nothing about the things we study?
P — It’s a theory, and a strong one I think, but about how to study things, or rather how not to study them. Or rather how to let the actors have some room to express themselves.
S — Do you mean that other social theories don’t allow that?
P — In a way, yes, and because of their very strengths: they are good at saying positive things about what the social world is made of. In most cases that’s fine; the ingredients are known; their numbers should be kept small. But that doesn’t work when things are changing fast, and, I would add, not, for instance, in organization studies, or information studies, or marketing, or science and technology studies, where boundaries are so terribly fuzzy. New topics, that’s when you need ANT for."

Wishlist: The Social Study of Information and Communication Study, edited by C. Avgerou, C. Ciborra, and F.F. Land, Oxford University Press, 2004, pp.62-76


sábado, junho 03, 2006

On Actor Network Theory (ANT)

John Law (1999), «Traduction/Trahison: Notes on ANT», published by the Centre for Science Studies, Lancaster University, Lancaster LA1 4YN:
"And this is why I would recommend actor-network theory. I would recommend it because it is weak. Because it is in dissolution. Because it has betrayed itself. Because it has turned itself from signal into noise. Because it no longer exists. Because it has dissolved itself into other ways of seeing, of writing, and of doing."

More in On-Line Publications by Author - Sociology at Lancaster University.


terça-feira, maio 30, 2006

[events] UMICS 2006

Rationale and aims of UMICS 2006 (Ubiquitous Mobile Information and Collaboration Systems), CAiSE'06 Workshop, June 5-6 2006, Luxembourg:

"Over the last years most business processes changed on various dimensions (e.g. flexibility, interconnectivity, coordination style, autonomy) [...] Frequently, information is relocated within this geographically distributed system [...] This creates a need for a software infrastructure that enables ubiquitous mobile and collaboration systems (UMICS).

Technologies such as WiFi networks and 3rd generation mobile phones, are offering the infrastructure to conceive information systems as ubiquitous information systems, that is, systems that are accessible from anywhere, at any time, and with any device. Ubiquity mainly is a means to support new business models and encourage new ways of work.[...]

Moreover people need to move across organizational boundaries and collaborate with others within the organization as well as between organizations. [...] Therefore, some issues also arise about how to enable users to retain their ability to cooperate while displaced in a different point of the enterprise, the role of context and location in determining cooperation, the support for ad-hoc cooperation in situations where the fixed network infrastructure is absent or cannot be used.

The approaches and technologies for supporting these new ways of work are still the subject of research.[...]"

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[disclosure] exploring fields of mobility and information needs

When we start our travelling to discovery we tend to find a lot of things that used to be invisible. News flags are added and our filters enact new looking glasses to the world. My new flags are now concerned with mobility and information needs, the umbrella of my research.

As you may already sensed, links for resources dealling with aspects i consider relevant and/or resources that might provide leads for my ongoing research, are now more frequent.

My «lenses» are opened so i'll be posting a variety a cross field resources, not concentrating with only one field.

domingo, maio 28, 2006

[resources] Actor Network Theory

Finding about «actor network theory» (interdisciplinary approach to the social sciences and technology studies) and trying to see if it is usefull for framing my research [PS 12/Jul/2006 - Actor Network Theory is a method and not a framing theory in that sense, but i couldn't have guessed it before reading more about ANT ;-) That's the beauty of research and being able to document the steps in the blog]
  • What is Actor-Network Theory? Contributes from Bardini, Goguen, Hanseth, Risen, Lemke, Bowker & Star, Callon, Frohmann, Keele, Miettinen, Van House, Sidorova & Sarker, elaborated by Martin Ryder, on July 2003.
  • John Law and John Hassard (eds) (1999), Actor Network Theory and After
  • "In this note I start by exploring the metaphor of heterogeneous network. This lies at the heart of actor-network theory, and is a way of suggesting that society, organisations, agents and machines are all effects generated in patterned networks of diverse (not simply human) materials." (p.2)

  • Actor Network Theory - discussion group at Yahoo, moderated by Jose Pinheiro Neves, from Departamento de Sociologia, Instituto de Ciências Sociais, Universidade do Minho.
  • Actor-Network Theory Resources, Centre for Science Studies, County College South, Lancaster University, UK.
  • Bill Doolin & Alan Lowe (2002), To reveal is to critique: actor-network theory and critical information systems research. Journal of Information Technology, Vol. 17 (2):

    "Despite its relativist ontology, actor-network theory places a strong emphasis on empirical inquiry and this paper argues that actor-network theory, with its careful tracing and recording of heterogeneous networks, is well suited to the generation of detailed and contextual empirical knowledge about IS. The intention in this paper is to explore the relevance of IS research informed by actor-network theory in the pursuit of a broader critical research project as defined in earlier work."

Other related readings:

  • Boundary Objects - Bowker, G. C., & Star, S. L. (1999). Sorting Things Out: Classification and Its Consequences. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press:

    "... are those objects that both inhabit several communities of practice and satisfy the informational requirements of each of them. Boundary objects are thus both plastic enough to adapt to local needs and constraints of the several parties employing them, yet robust enough to maintain a common identity across sites. They are weakly structured in common use and become strongly structured in individual-site use. These objects may be abstract or concrete... Such objects have different meanings in different social worlds but their structure is common enough to more than one world to make them recognizable, a means of translation. The creation and management of boundary objects is a key process in developing and maintaining coherence across intersecting communities." (Bowker & Star, 1999 pg. 297)

  • Geraldine Fitzpatrick, William J. Tolone and Simon M. Kaplan (1995), Work, Locales and Distributed Social Worlds. Proceedings of the Fourth European Conference on Computer-Supported Cooperative Work, September 10-14, Stockholm, Sweden. H. Marmolin, Y. Sundblad, and K. Schmidt (Editors), Kluwer Academic Publishers, pp. 1-16.

... and something offtopic about tagging, folksonomies, and ANT (Actor Network Theory) in a paper by Adam Mathes (2004), Folksonomies - Cooperative Classification and Communication Through Shared Metadata:

"After examining the other sites the user tagged with ANT, it was apparent this was an acronym for "Actor Network Theory," in the domain of sociology. However, when examining the ANT tag across all users (Delicious apparently is not case sensitive in tags) most of the bookmarks were about Apache Ant, a project building tool in the Java programming language. Two completely separate domains and ideas are mixed together in the same tag." (p.5)

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domingo, abril 23, 2006

destination discovery

ShadowsSand (1)
Originally uploaded by monicaA.
I didn´t talked before, affraid that my dream wouldn't come true. Now it's closer than ever :-) Following last year's defense of master thesis, the doctoral draft as been accepted at Universidade do Minho (385Km away), Departamento de Sistemas de Informação. I've also applied for a FCT grant in order to be able to pay for the study fees, that my salary can't cover. I'm crossing my fingers and hoping for the results.

I still have a long way to go, but the feeling inside is great it's like i'm on my way already.

"A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step. "
Lao-tzu, The Way of Lao-tzu
Chinese philosopher (604 BC - 531 BC)

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domingo, abril 16, 2006

[paper] Information needs research in Russia and Lithuania, 1965-2003

The new issue of Information Research is online since yesterday. One of the papers that caught my attention was Macevičiūtė, E. (2006), "Information needs research in Russia and Lithuania, 1965-2003", Information Research, 11(3) paper 256, in parte because of the conclusions on context and the differences found on everyday information needs along with professional informational needs:

"Despite the isolation of two bodies of research (Western and East European) in the area of information needs the common development and similarities in the understanding of the basic concept of information need, its origin and structure as well as typologies are revealed. Basic differences lie in understanding the contexts of the formation of information needs, their influence and, consequently, attention to the roles of contexts in research. It also seems that the everyday, non-work related information needs are totally excluded from the horizons of Russian researchers"

sexta-feira, março 31, 2006

Blogs as personal learning environments

HigherEdBlogCon 2006

Great online event giving the oportunity for worldwide participation. I'm specially interested on the following 2 sessions (but will check also Websites & Web Development, on April 24-28):

sexta-feira, março 03, 2006

information spaces transitions

"On the net, I don't meet people face to face but through digitally mediated channels. But there my mobility is global and instantaneous, and the speed of interaction and change matches much more closely the speed I need to be able to do all the stuff I find relevant. Through the net I arrange the face to face meetings, through the net I decide where to spend my limited time and resources for geographical mobility. Which in the end actually increases my geographical mobility(...)"

Ton's description of his practices helps my reflection on the study of infomobility around and across infospaces. Ton uses the word infoscape refering to the online information, and geoscape for the face to face information.
For me the infoscape is the total amount of information one is exposed to in all the information spaces one has access, regardly of the medium one uses. Thow i understand the use of the word to make the point about crossing geo and digital landscapes and the problems one faces having to live in all of them but feeling that the transition is still not smooth enought to allow an inclusive informationspace.

quarta-feira, março 01, 2006

"Making traces visible" - vanished photo

Can't understand why this picture vanished from Flickr?!...

I've noticed it happened before with other pictures i have loaded, but those ones i didn't stay with something to prove of their existence... and had to load them again :-(

What's going on? Anyone with the same problem?...

UPDATE [March, 2] - The problem is listed in the FAQ in www.flickr.com/help/limits/#66.

SUMMARY - photos will not show up if one exceeds 200 photos for a normal account. They will still be visible where one blogged them... but not the conversations and the links that give context to the image :-(

SUGGESTION - Perhaps Flicrk could allows us to choose wich photos we want to keep.

UPDATE 2 [March, 2] - After i've posted the previous message, i went on deleting a couple on photos from the ones that matter to me the least...... for my great surprise, after the deletions my "Making traces visible" photo is back :-)

So this is a partly solution if one wants to get back the list of the most enjoyed/liked photos/pictures just delete some of the less liked. Still i have to figure what is the use of using a social software like Flickr if the links wont be abble to keep persistante over time (cause social ties take time to establish)... maybe i need to find other solutions.

sexta-feira, fevereiro 24, 2006


... or, to me, boundary scripts.
Roger Schank, Information is Surprises, excerpted from The Third Culture: Beyond the Scientific Revolution by John Brockman (Simon & Schuster, 1995), chapter 9:

"We all expect the world to work out in certain ways, but when it does, we're bored. What makes something worth knowing is organized around the concept of expectation failure. Scripts are interesting not when they work but when they fail."

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sábado, fevereiro 18, 2006

Weekend food

"We can talk all we want about tools and protocols, mandates and rewards. But what we are really asking ourselves to do is start to behave like a network brain, a hive mind. Not a bunch of individuals who are required to dump their knowledge into the pot."

"We are drawing on social networking sites, blogs, RSS aggregators, bookmarklets, toolbars, extensions, plug-ins. Some people may be developing elaborate digital identities, a personal 'bricolage' of network services. Others are less actively constructive (...)"

sexta-feira, fevereiro 10, 2006

A Pattern Language for Doctoral Students

Joseph Bergin, in A Pattern Language for Doctoral Students, among many other things, states that:

"Research is only useful if it is published."

This makes me blush considering that i've still haven't published a paper about my work... and it's been 10 months since i defended my master :-(

segunda-feira, janeiro 30, 2006

Women in Science

The first International AMONET Meeting on Women in Science, will take place March 16-17, 2006, on Fundação Calouste Gulbenkian, Lisbon:

"The meeting will have as major objectives to discuss issues related to women scientists, to present top women scientists active in different fields, and to present similar associations from other countries."

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sábado, janeiro 28, 2006

focus on the individual

The need to study the information needs of individuals comes to a lot of other reflections concerning the shift of tools for the organization to tools for the individual, or, in the words of Stowe Boyd, from groupware to soloware. More about this idea in The Individual Is The New Group - Part 1:

"(...) focus on the individual. The groups will follow."

quarta-feira, janeiro 25, 2006

I'm playing to learn... or learning by playing!

I'm having fun on learning to play with information: mixing all the bits together, taking some parts of each and adding them in new ways. That's one of the reasons i've been keeping so silent. If you want some of the pieces i'm playing with, you might want to have a look in informationSpaces on my del.icio.us ;-)


terça-feira, janeiro 17, 2006

stepping back to move forward

I have been lacking posts but not reflections on work research. One my tend to think that if one does not make it visible must be because one is not working on her research. Found out that one can make a major leap forward just by stepping back to old chunks of information in order to explain how things work. That's how i'm founding out things that i didn't know I knew, just by being asked to explain things to newcomers in the house.
Thow i'm not in Academia but in a Research Lab i've enjoyed reading the arguments of Marcia Bates (1999) on The Role of the Ph.D. in a Professional Field. Found it cristal clear why i enjoy so much information studies (and why it takes so long to have a clear picture on what i'm working ;):

"Information studies meets those social needs by drawing on a wide range of intellectual and physical technologies. Achieving the objectives of our profession depends on the skillful melding of an understanding of social, political, economic, and psychological factors related to information needs and uses with a mastery of both theoretical and practical issues in information organization and system design."