Adam Worrall

Site Navigation

Note: This is a reformatted version of the quick reference that appears in the PDF copy of the dissertation.

Theoretical Framework for Social Digital Libraries: Coding Scheme

by Adam Worrall, May 2013

Incorporates boundary object theory (Star, 1989; Star & Griesemer, 1989), the social worlds perspective (Strauss, 1978), and the theory of information worlds (Burnett & Jaeger, 2008; Jaeger & Burnett, 2010). Definitions also sourced from Oxford English Dictionary (oed.com).

General Rules

  • The main unit of coding is sentences; codes should be applied at this level only.
  • As an exception to this rule, no more than two codes may be applied to an entire message, interview answer, or short interview exchange (≤ ½ page) if there is clear evidence for them throughout the message, answer, or exchange. A memo or annotation to explain such application is strongly encouraged and recommended.
  • With no exceptions, codes may not be applied to smaller units of analysis than sentences, and should be applied separately to more than one message, answer, or exchange.
  • Apply only the lowest level of coding. In other words, do not code for coherence, boundary objects, convergence, or boundary object as standard; choose one or more characteristics / subcodes underneath them.
  • Memos and annotations are strongly encouraged and recommended throughout to explain the following:
  • Cases where the applicability of a code is not to just one sentence within a message.
  • Detailed reasons for coding where deemed necessary
  • The levels of social and information worlds under consideration, especially when boundary-related codes are applied
  • The distinction between existing and emergent, seen along a continuum and as emergent from the research data; use memos and annotations to elaborate on where given cases fall on this continuum
  • If in doubt, add an annotation!

Existing Worlds

Translation

The process of reconciliation and translation of meanings between different people, social worlds, or information worlds.

Coherence

The degree of consistency between different translations and existing social or information worlds.
Code under one or more of the following characteristics / subcodes:

Social Norms

The common standards and sense of appropriate (right or wrong) behaviors, activities, and social appearances in a world.
Do not apply when substantial parts of thread or interview are socially normative; use an annotation instead.

Social Types

The ways in which individuals are both explicitly and implicitly perceived and defined—in terms of roles, status, and hierarchy—within the context of their world.

Information Value

A shared sense, explicit or implicit, of the relative scale of the importance—emotionally, spiritually, culturally, politically, and/or economically—of information and whether it is worth attention.
Do not apply when substantial parts of thread/interview express shared info values; use an annotation instead.

Information Behavior / Activities

Normative, chosen information behavior and information-based occupations or pursuits—defined broadly—by members of a world.
Note that such behavior must be normative at some level to be coded, and general occurrence of information behavior should not be coded.

Organizations

Organized, but possibly temporary bodies with the particular purpose of furthering one aspect or another of the world’s activities.

Boundary Object

Cross the boundaries between multiple existing social or information worlds and are used within and adapted to many of them simultaneously while maintaining a common identity across sites.
Code under one or more of the following characteristics / subcodes:

Sites

Spaces, positions, or locations—physical, virtual, or metaphorical—where information-related activities and behaviors take place.

Technologies / ICTs

Inherited or innovative processes, methods, techniques, equipment, or systems—developed from the practical application of knowledge—used for carrying out information or communication-related behaviors and activities.

Emergent Worlds

Convergence

The degree of consistency between different translations and emergent social or information worlds.
Code under one or more of the following characteristics / subcodes:

Social Norms, Social Types, Information Value, Information Behavior / Activities, Organizations

See first page for how to code these

If it is unclear whether a new world—of any size or scale—has truly emerged, memos and annotations should be used to express the degree of confidence of this.

Boundary Object as Standard

Digital library as a new, local standard for a new, emergent social or information world.
Code under one or more of the following characteristics / subcodes:

Emergent Site

Digital library serving as an emergent, standard, and influential space, position, or location for information-related activities and behaviors.
Must be clear evidence of the digital library serving as a new standard site for an emergent world.

Emergent Technology / ICT

Digital library providing emergent and standard processes, methods, techniques, equipment, or systems—developed from the practical application of knowledge—used for carrying out information or communication-related behaviors and activities in an emergent world. Must be clear evidence of the digital library providing or serving as a new standard technology within an emergent world.

Emergent Boundary Object

Digital library serves as an emergent, standard boundary object, but not as a site or technology. Must be clear evidence of digital library serving such a role. Must be clear that the digital library is not serving as a site or technology; such cases are expected to be rare, but this subcode is provided for completeness. Cannot apply this alongside emergent site or emergent technology codes.