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Abstract

During the twentieth century there was a strong desire for information studies to become scientific, to move from librarianship, bibliography, and documentation to an information science. In 1968 the American Documentation Institute was renamed American Society for Information Science. By the twenty-first century, however, departments of (library and) information science had turned instead towards the social sciences, but have not been successful in providing a coherent explanation of the nature and scope of the field.

The accepted view of Information Science as an emerging, scientific discipline closely tied with Information Technology and, mainly, textual data, will be challenged. Three brief presentations proposing different foundations and directions as a basis for a moderated discussion: There are other options: The development of Information Science in France has been radically different and has from the start been steeped in the humanities. The scope and focus should be broader to include, for example, the cognitive and aesthetic experiences of museum visitors? If Information Science is really concerned with influencing what people know, what kind of science can Information Science be?