Most classification schemes in common use are actually categorization schemes which fall somewhere on a continuum between unstructured, uncontrolled lists of terms and formal classifications. Over time, terms change meaning and acquire new definitions. This paper presents the results of an approach that used the librarianship principle of consensus to form categories of terms and to relate those categories using a domain reference group. Boisot's Social Learning Cycle (SLC) was then used as a model with which to explain category variations. The single study undertaken in this investigation demonstrated the value of the SLC for explaining the variations between reference group members, and showed the potential for explaining category changes over time. This identifies areas in which consensus is breaking down or emerging, allowing for focused maintenance of categorical schemes.
Field of Research
080611 Information Systems Theory
Socio Economic Objective
890301 Electronic Information Storage and Retrieval Services