Information Science and Its Core Concepts: Levels of Disagreement

  • Birger Hjørland
Part of the Studies in History and Philosophy of Science book series (AUST, volume 34)


One often encounters disagreements in information science (IS) (or library and information science, LIS), even disagreements about what might seem rather trivial questions. Such disagreements range from the designation of the field to questions such as whether IS is an academic discipline or not, what its aim is, what its core concepts are, what kinds of problems we try to solve, and what kinds of theories, metatheories, and related disciplines are the most important ones for us. Some people tend to regard IS as a branch of computer science or the cognitive sciences, while others tend to consider it as part of cultural studies or of science studies, and the different views are often reflected in the various names given to the field. These kinds of disagreement and their mutual dependencies are the focus in this chapter, with an emphasis on the different labels given for the field. “Poor terminological hygiene” may account for some of the disagreements, but basically the problem is seen as a lack of sufficient strong centripetal tendencies keeping the field together.


Information Science Information Management Academic Discipline Core Concept Bibliographical Database 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Royal School of Library and Information ScienceUniversity of CopenhagenCopenhagen SDenmark

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