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KEYNOTE ADDRESS : Information organizing: an evolutionary and development framework

Information behaviour has emerged as an important aspect of human life, however our knowledge and understanding of it is incomplete and underdeveloped scientifically. Our understanding of information behaviour and the sub-process information organizing behaviour is largely contemporary in focus. In this presentation Professor Spink discusses an evolutionary and developmental framework for information behaviour and information organizing from her recent book Information Behaviour: An Evolutionary Instinct (2010, Springer) by incorporating related findings, theories and models from evolutionary psychology, cognitive archaeology, cognitive neuroscience and developmental psychology. In her presentation, she argues that information behavior and information organizing are important instinctive socio-cognitive abilities for all humans, that can only be fully understood with an evolutionary and developmental perspective. Professor Spink’s presentation addresses four important research questions. Firstly, what is the evolutionary, biological and developmental basis for information behaviour and information organizing behaviour? Secondly, what is the role of instinct versus environment in shaping information behaviour and information organizing behaviour? Thirdly, how have information behaviour and organizing capabilities evolved and developed over human species? Fourthly, when and how do information behaviour and in particular information organizing abilities emerge in young children? An evolutionary and developmental approach lays the foundation for a more holistic perspective on information behaviour and information organizing behaviour, and opens many new research directions.

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