SEARCH

SEARCH BY CITATION

Abstract

  1. Top of page
  2. Abstract
  3. Introduction
  4. The Ethical Implications of Values in Computational Modeling Kenneth R. Fleischmann and William A. Wallace
  5. Personal Values and Digital Artifacts in Personal Information Management Andrea Japzon
  6. Privacy Values and Digital Libraries: A Sociotechnical Analysis Michael Khoo
  7. Conclusion
  8. References

This panel will draw on interdisciplinary research relating to information and values. It will open with an interactive session during which the audience members will discuss the role of values in current and future information research. The panel members will then present three papers describing current information research projects in which the concept of “value” plays a major role.


Introduction

  1. Top of page
  2. Abstract
  3. Introduction
  4. The Ethical Implications of Values in Computational Modeling Kenneth R. Fleischmann and William A. Wallace
  5. Personal Values and Digital Artifacts in Personal Information Management Andrea Japzon
  6. Privacy Values and Digital Libraries: A Sociotechnical Analysis Michael Khoo
  7. Conclusion
  8. References

This panel will draw on interdisciplinary research relating to information and values, from value sensitive design concepts in human-computer interaction (HCI), to the role of values in human information behaviors, to the value of information privacy in digital library design.

In the areas of HCI and information systems design, an emphasis on human values has led to the research area of value sensitive design (VSD). Friedman, Kahn, and Borning (2006) defined values as “what a person or group of people consider important in life” (p. 349). As they explained, VSD “is a theoretically grounded approach to the design of technology that accounts for human values in a principled and comprehensive manner throughout the design process” (p. 349). They identified a “long-standing interest in designing information and computational systems that support enduring human values” (p. 348) and suggested that VSD can serve as a framework for investigating how human values are embedded in information systems.

Values have also been investigated in the area of human information behavior, in which values are often seen as underlying motivating factors. For example, Savolainen (1995) suggested that in everyday life, information seeking behaviors are guided by “way of life” (p. 263) and “mastery of life” (p. 264). “Way of life” refers to “the order of things” (p. 263), or to a person's preferences for activities such as household tasks and hobbies. It influences one's proportional allocation of work and leisure time, consumption of goods, and personal hobbies. Savolainen defined “mastery of life” as “a general preparedness to approach everyday problems in certain ways in accordance with one's values” (p. 264). It serves to keep things in order and reflects a cognitive style used to solve problems: cognitive or affective, and optimistic or pessimistic, scaffolded by one's own personal values.

Other research has suggested that different generations place different values on different types of information technologies. For example, in a comparison of undergraduates' and professors' use of information and communication technologies (ICTs), Gasson and Agosto (2008) found that students tended to value ICTs as tools for building and maintaining personal social relations, whereas professors tended to value them more as tools for building and maintaining professional relationships (p. 5). The authors concluded that these variant ways of looking at technology should be considered when using ICTs for educational delivery (p. 9). Similarly, Kent and McNergney (1999, p. 48) have suggested that studentss' personal values affect they way they learn with technology.

This panel will present one representative study from three different areas of investigation in order to provide a basis for examining the role of values in information research across multiple areas of research. It will address questions such as:

  • 1.
    How are human values embedded in information systems? How should they be used to inform information systems design?
  • 2.
    How do organizational values vary among different types of organizations?
  • 3.
    What types of values do users place on different information formats? Do users tend to place higher or lower values on paper-based or digital information objects?
  • 4.
    What role do community values play in information privacy? How can information policy be used to protect privacy values?

The panel will include three presentations:

The Ethical Implications of Values in Computational Modeling Kenneth R. Fleischmann and William A. Wallace

  1. Top of page
  2. Abstract
  3. Introduction
  4. The Ethical Implications of Values in Computational Modeling Kenneth R. Fleischmann and William A. Wallace
  5. Personal Values and Digital Artifacts in Personal Information Management Andrea Japzon
  6. Privacy Values and Digital Libraries: A Sociotechnical Analysis Michael Khoo
  7. Conclusion
  8. References

This paper will examine the role of social, cultural, and moral values in the design and use of computational models in three different organizations: a corporate research laboratory (Fleischmann & Wallace, 2006, in press), an academic research laboratory, and a government research laboratory. It will focus on how values such as transparency (Fleischmann & Wallace, 2005, in press) are embedded in computational models, how these values are shaped by professional and organizational culture, and the effects of these embedded values on the success of computational models as products.

It will also discuss the important role played by values in shaping both the process and products of modeling, and how the different values of different organizational cultures influence both the process and products of modeling. It will conclude by explaining the critical role that values play in other forms of information technology design and use, and the importance of providing ethics education for information professionals.

Personal Values and Digital Artifacts in Personal Information Management Andrea Japzon

  1. Top of page
  2. Abstract
  3. Introduction
  4. The Ethical Implications of Values in Computational Modeling Kenneth R. Fleischmann and William A. Wallace
  5. Personal Values and Digital Artifacts in Personal Information Management Andrea Japzon
  6. Privacy Values and Digital Libraries: A Sociotechnical Analysis Michael Khoo
  7. Conclusion
  8. References

The current transition from the prominence of analog formats to digital (Lyman & Varian, 2003) has led many people to accumulate ever-growing collections of personal digital artifacts. These digital artifacts are increasingly dynamic and social in nature, anonymously or communally authored, and easily replicated or altered. For example, digital photos and digital music files represent examples of two major cultural and technical shifts in the format of personal information possessions.

The study of personal information management is closely related to the values of preservation and privacy. But what values (sentimental, emotional, financial, and historical) do individuals attribute to digital artifacts? Do these values differ from or relate to the values they place on physical artifacts? Do values vary across generations? This presentation will examine the values that people place on information along the physical to digital formats continuum, and it will focus on how these changes are affecting the values that people and society place on information and information objects.

Privacy Values and Digital Libraries: A Sociotechnical Analysis Michael Khoo

  1. Top of page
  2. Abstract
  3. Introduction
  4. The Ethical Implications of Values in Computational Modeling Kenneth R. Fleischmann and William A. Wallace
  5. Personal Values and Digital Artifacts in Personal Information Management Andrea Japzon
  6. Privacy Values and Digital Libraries: A Sociotechnical Analysis Michael Khoo
  7. Conclusion
  8. References

Privacy and trust are key components of the experience of using a digital library. Upon arriving at a site, users quickly have to make judgment questions such as: Are my personal data being collected? If so, who collects these data? Will it be shared with spammers and telemarketers? Could it be stolen? Can other users see it? Who administers this site? Are they trustworthy?

Judgments of trustworthiness vary according to personal and community privacy values. Most users won't know how many web technologies work, and privacy policies have to address these uncertainties with user-friendly design, navigation, and content while supporting personal and cultural values. But when end user values conflict with usability and design issues, how can designers reconcile the conflicts? This paper will consider how individual and organizational values are embedded in digital library privacy policies, and how these policies affect site usage. It will also consider how ‘Web 2.0’ technologies - in which the Web browser becomes a dynamic and configurable space with the potential to connect seamlessly with a wide range of social and sharing web sites - may affect privacy values and the design of privacy policies.

Conclusion

  1. Top of page
  2. Abstract
  3. Introduction
  4. The Ethical Implications of Values in Computational Modeling Kenneth R. Fleischmann and William A. Wallace
  5. Personal Values and Digital Artifacts in Personal Information Management Andrea Japzon
  6. Privacy Values and Digital Libraries: A Sociotechnical Analysis Michael Khoo
  7. Conclusion
  8. References

Together these analyses span a wide range of information science and technology topics, tied together by the concept of values. The panel will analyze how values have been studied in these areas and offer suggestions for a research agenda related to values and information. The session will conclude with a discussion encouraging audience members to explain how values influence their own individual areas of research and investigation. The panel is supported by ASIS&T SIG SI (Social Informatics).

References

  1. Top of page
  2. Abstract
  3. Introduction
  4. The Ethical Implications of Values in Computational Modeling Kenneth R. Fleischmann and William A. Wallace
  5. Personal Values and Digital Artifacts in Personal Information Management Andrea Japzon
  6. Privacy Values and Digital Libraries: A Sociotechnical Analysis Michael Khoo
  7. Conclusion
  8. References
  • Fleischmann, K. R. & Wallace, W. A. (2005). A covenant with transparency: Opening the black box of models. Communications of the ACM, 48, 9397.
  • Fleischmann, K. R. & Wallace, W. A. (2006). Ethical implications of values embedded in computational models: An exploratory study. In Proceedings of the 69th Annual Conference of the American Society for Information Science and Technology.
  • Fleischmann, K. R. & Wallace, W. A. (in press). Ensuring transparency in computational modeling: How and why modelers make models transparent. Forthcoming in Communications of the ACM.
  • Friedman, B., Kahn, P. H., Jr., & Borning, A. (2006). Value sensitive design and information systems. In Zhang, P., & Galletta, D. (Eds.), Human-computer interaction and management information systems (pp. 348372). Armonk, NY: Sharpe.
  • Gasson, S., & Agosto, D. E. (2008). Millennial students' technology use: Implications for undergraduate education. In Education in HCI: HCI in Education. The HCIC 2008 Winter Workshop, Human Computer Interaction Consortium, Snow Mountain Ranch, Fraser, Colorado, 2008.
  • Kent, T., & McNergney, R. (1999). Will technology really change education? From Blackboard to the Web Thousand Oaks: Corwin Press.
  • Lyman, P. & Varian, H. (2003). How much information 2003? Retrieved from http://www2.sims.berkeley.edu/research/projects/how-much-info-2003/ on January 3, 2008.
  • Savolainen, R. (1995). Everyday life information seeking: Approaching information seeking in the context of “Way of Life.” Library & Information Science Research, 17, 259294.