iSchool scholars to present at 12th Annual iConference

The annual iConference convenes a broad spectrum of scholars and researchers from around the world who share a common concern about critical information issues in contemporary society.

This year’s iConference is hosted by Drexel University College of Computing & Informatics and takes place Sunday, March 20 through Wednesday, March 23, 2016, in historic Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. This year’s theme of “Partnership with Society” examines the dynamic, evolving role of information science and today’s iSchool movement, and the benefits to society. 

The UW Information School will participate by presenting papers, posters and serving on conference committees.

Poster Sessions

Information and Learning: Trust, Place, and Migration
Veronica E. Guajardo, Ph.D. student, Ricardo Gomez, associate professor, Sara Vannini, visiting scholar

Migrants face many barriers related to economic opportunities, language, and information needed not only to survive but thrive. This poster highlights findings of Fotohistorias, a participatory photography research project spanning three countries and two years. This research helps to better understand migrant’s values,learning and information needs, in particular the building of trust and its relation to place, which emerge as critical issues in the experience of migration.

Leveraging Citation Networks to Generate Narrative Visualizations of Scholars’ Careers
Jason Portenoy, Ph.D. student, Jevin West, assistant professor

We present an approach for generating dynamic narrative visualizations of scholars' careers. This approach includes an animated node-link diagram which shows the citation network accumulated around the researcher over the course of the career, with nodes and links appearing as the representation of the career progresses. Additional data provide more richness to the narrative, including timelines of key indicators, career milestones, and excerpts from qualitative interviews with the scholars. The intended audiences for this work include the scholars, who can enjoy and gain insight from a new way of looking back on their careers, and funding agencies, who have an interest in finding ways to evaluate the impact that their scholars have had.

Organizing Videogame Metadata In CollectiveAccess
​​Stephen Andrew Keating, Ph.D. student 

Local institutions need to organize information sets with complex information and attributes. Whether or not open source software has the ability to adequately provide a robust yet easy-to-use system for such institutions is a question raised frequently. To explore that question, a metadata schema created by the GAme MEtadata Research Group (GAMER) at the University of Washington was implemented in CollectiveAccess (CA), an open source cataloging software used by many organizations to manage digital collections, as a case study. As an organizational system, CA is appealing because it enables users to create metadata schema with relative ease. However, during implementation, issues emerged related to its potential as a long-term solution, including ease-of-use for both administrators and end-users. This poster explains and expands upon the issues encountered during the implementation process, focusing on how they might be resolved, and what the implications are for designing similar applications in the future.

The Missing Link: A Typology for Understanding Link Ephemerality in Social Media Datasets
Shawn Walker, Ph.D. candidate, Sheetal Agarwal

In this study we offer a preliminary typology of types of link ephemerality that can occur and affect content of social media data. The preliminary typology emerged while collecting and analyzing social media data, videos, and web links in three distinct projects. The Internet Archive was also queried to determine if each URL was archived and the time span between tweet production and archiving. Since certain types of URL change may have a negative impact on our research, we need a more nuanced understanding of the ways in which URLs in social media data change. Understanding this change moves us beyond binary inclusion/exclusion categories of accessible (“404 Not Found”) and inaccessible. Our analysis and typology informs researchers’ data collection strategies as well as opening up the possibilities on setting more nuanced boundaries on data collection and inclusion.


Security and Activism: Using participatory photography to elicit perceptions of Information and Authority among Hispanic migrants in the U.S.
Sara Vannini, visiting scholar, Ricardo Gómez, assistant professor, Verónica Guajardo, Ph.D. student

This paper presents results of a participatory photography research where we explore Information, culture and identity in the lives of disenfranchised groups such as undocumented migrants in the U.S.. Information behaviors of undocumented migrants are difficult to uncover, given their legal status. Migrants experience complex relations with authority, security and social activism, and their Information behaviors are mediated by the transience of their life experiences while at the border, the constant fear of detention and deportation in their daily lives, and their growing involvement with protests and activism for their rights as they become more established in their host country. We compare migrants’ experiences at the U.S.-Mexico border with experiences in Seattle, Washington, and we uncover four migrants’ information behavior types, corresponding to different stages of transience in their lives, while reflecting on participatory photography as a methodological framework suitable to a social group at the fringes of mainstream society. 

Applying User Engagement Models from Direct-to-Patient Online Services to Improve Patient Portal Design
Jordan Christine Eschler, Ph.D. candidate, Marc Schmalz, Ph.D. student, Michelle S Carter, assistant professor

As part of Electronic Health Records (EHR) systems, patient portals can be powerful tools for patient engagement. However, most portals do not currently incorporate patient-centered design to assist patients in understanding and managing their health outside of the clinic setting. In this paper, we employ a qualitative analysis of direct-to-patient web sites that serve patients as the primary stakeholders. The web sites we analyzed present information and depict patients in ways that confer agency, offering patients a number of ways to educate themselves and seek further services. Our analysis identifies crucial design elements of such web sites that could be implemented into current patient portals to increase patient empowerment in understanding and managing their care. Ultimately, the proposed model of “active patient engagement” can empower patients to learn about their health and engage more actively in medical discourse, potentially impacting health outcomes.

The Home Buying Experience: The impacts of time pressure and emotion on High Stakes Deciders Information Behavior|
Carol Landry, Ph.D. '15

The purpose of this study was to determine how time pressure and emotion influenced people's information behavior when engaging in high stakes decision-making within the home buying domain. Employing an exploratory approach, 33 semi-structured interviews involving a timeline strategy, as well as 8 observations, were conducted with participants from the Seattle, Washington metropolitan area. Findings revealed that "information use" induced emotion, created a sense of time pressure and generated an interaction of the two factors, whereas "non-information use" behaviors such as information needs and information seeking were propelled by emotion and time pressure. The study also identified the emergent "information use by proxy" phenomenon wherein emotion prompted people to enlist trusted surrogates to use information for making decisions on their behalf. Further, findings show that emotion and time pressure have the ability to alter one's routine information behavior to that of a more impulsive or arbitrary approach.

Other iSchool participants

  • iConference 2016 Mentor for the Doctoral Colloquium: Joseph T. Tennis, associate professor and director of faculty affairs. 
  • iConference 2016 Organizers: Karen E. Fisher, professor 
  • Program Committee Members: Karine Nahon, associate professor