The Social Dimension of Information Ranking: A Discussion of Research Challenges and Approaches

  • Ingo ScholtesEmail author
  • René Pfitzner
  • Frank Schweitzer
Conference paper
Part of the Springer Proceedings in Complexity book series (SPCOM)


The ability to quickly extract relevant knowledge from large-scale information repositories like the World Wide Web, scholarly publication databases or Online Social Networks has become crucial to our information society. Apart from the technical issues involved in the storage, processing and retrieval of huge amounts of data, the design of automated mechanisms which rank and filter information based on their relevance (i) in a given context, and (ii) to a particular user has become a major challenge. In this chapter we argue that, due to the fact that information systems are increasingly interwoven with the social systems into which they are embedded, the ranking and filtering of information is effectively a socio-technical problem. Drawing from recent developments in the context of social information systems, we highlight a number of research challenges which we argue should become an integral part of a social informatics research agenda. We further review promising research approaches that can give rise to a systems design of information systems that addresses both its technical and social dimension in an integrated way.



IS and FS acknowledge support by the Swiss National Foundation, grant no. CR31I1_140644/1. We further acknowledge support by COST action TD1210: Analyzing the dynamics of information and knowledge landscapes.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ingo Scholtes
    • 1
    Email author
  • René Pfitzner
    • 1
  • Frank Schweitzer
    • 1
  1. 1.Chair of Systems DesignETH ZurichZurichSwitzerland

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