Information retrieval

  • Julian Warner (Participant)

Impact: Cultural Impact

Who is affected

Information retrieval


Information retrieval

The book, HumanInformation Retrieval, was well and widely reviewed and has since beenadopted as the basis for a new paradigm in information retrieval.

 Warner’slanguage-informed account of “human information retrieval” is an innovativeapproach. … Warnerhas discovered new ways of applying linguistic concepts and language-relatedanalogies and thus opened up new approaches to IR [information retrieval]research. Volkmar Engerer. Exploring interdisciplinary relationships betweenlinguistics and information retrieval from the 1960s to today. Journal of the Association for InformationScience and Technology. Article first published online: 4 APR 2016 | DOI:10.1002/asi.23684

 Warner's(2010) differentiation between IR [information retrieval] as querytransformation versus KO [knowledge organization] as providing ‘selectionpower’ seems important and is taken as the point of departure … in both thisand a following article. … Warner's two approaches (query transformation andselection power) may be useful as fundamental precepts on which to base anunderstanding of the role of KO in the electronic world … the perspective providedby Warner (2010) could be the way out of the crisis.  Birger Hjørland. Classical databases andknowledge organization: a case for Boolean retrieval and human decision-makingduring searches. Journal of theAssociation for Information Science and Technology. 66, 2015, pp.1559-2015(pp.1561, 1562, 1570).

 This theoretical, scholarly, and inspiring work that balances practical and theoretical aspects of human IR [information retrieval] ... its depth, value, and originality should not be neglected ... a useful contribution to the IR literature. Alireza Isfandyari-Moghaddam. Library Resources & Technical Services. 56, 2012, p.215

The approach is marvellously materialist. ... [the book] offers examples which illustrate searching on words and phrases using the theoretical model – and what examples! The use of an example drawn from ‘Horse Feathers’ as illustration is to be highly commended! ... This is an extremely interesting book. Truly scholarly and theoretical, it draws from a range of disciplines, including information science, philosophy, linguistics and communication science. Warner draws all these seemingly disparate strands into an elegant and coherent whole, demonstrating that there are similarities, analogies, things to be learned from delving wide. There are many other treasures in this book, which is a valuable theoretical contribution to the literature of information retrieval. Pauline Rafferty. Journal of Librarianship and Information Science. 43, 2011, pp.60-61.

Human Information Retrieval presents its readers with an interesting perspective on IR that well repays study. ... the labor-theoretic approach ... is structurally elegant and has the potential to be a very useful model for ‘macroscopic’ thinking about the design and evaluation of IR systems. ... a genuinely illuminating account of IR as a human phenomenon. Thomas M. Dousa. College & Research Libraries. 71, 5, 2010, pp.496-498.

This book … presents a very clear theoretical approach to the subject … The high level abstractions and theory are exemplified by actual examples from the library and information practice and internet, mostly information retrieval applications for full-text. This closeness to the real world and examples taken not only from the modern information retrieval systems but also from earlier means of accessing information stored in various ways (including human brain) is an exceptionally attractive feature of the proposed approach. … I would recommend the book to be acquired by all information science departments as a good theoretical introduction, not only to information retrieval as such, but also as a more general approach to an explanation of one of the most significant components of several information professions: description and search labour. Elena Maceviciute. Information Research. 15(3), 2010, review no. R383, 2010.

Julian Warner makes a hitting yet poignant and thought-provoking remark right at the onset of his book … academics and other professionals have given more attention to the practical understanding of information retrieval than to a full theoretical account. … The book is straightforward … simple and illustrative. … the book combines Warner’s excellent grasp of the information technology and web search along with his ability to humanise and personalise web content. Warner emphasises that information is not just about information technology and indexing and computation but also about people, mental labour and literature. Archana Venkatraman. Information World Review. 20 Apr 2010.

This lucid book … This is a difficult but well written and extremely relevant book, which contains a thorough academic treatment of HIR [human information retrieval] from the perspective of a labor theoretic approach. There are many historical analogies used within the text, which help to explain the origins of the study of human information retrieval. It manages to bridge the gap between practical and theoretical aspects of HIR in a coherent and meaningful fashion. … Researchers in HIR will find this an invaluable and thought provoking resource. Advanced undergraduate students and postgraduate students pursuing modules or a course in information resources management will also find much of relevance to their study. Stuart Fitz-Gerald. International Journal of Information Management. 30, 2, 2010, pp.180-181.

Impact statusOngoing
Category of impactCultural Impact
Impact levelBenefit


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