We had a record crop of position papers for the Collaborative Information Seeking (CIS) workshop we’re organizing at CSCW 2010. Underscoring the ubiquity of collaboration in information seeking, the position papers address everything from health care to emergency response to SecondLife to the information seeking ecology within the enterprise. The papers clustered out into several broad categories, although some papers could have been easily classified in more than one way.
We performed a quick triage of the papers to identify main themes, as shown below, but more insights are sure to emerge during the workshop.
- Transitions to collaboration
- Descriptions of CIS activities
- Models and consequences
- Interfaces and systems
This categorization of papers takes us from related activities that might provide context for the collaboration (and triggers to collaboration, as Karunakaran et al. point out), into more detailed descriptions of collaboration. We then generalize from description to create models, which in turn might inform the design of interfaces and systems. This seems like a balanced set of contributions in this relatively young area, and will surely stimulate discussion at the workshop.
What seems to be missing at the moment is work that closes the loop and evaluates the use of collaborative search tools in support of real work. Perhaps that should be the focus of the next iteration of this workshop.