Contextual factors affecting the utility of surrogates within exploratory search

Ian Ruthven, Mark Baillie, Leif Azzopardi, Ralf Bierig, Emma Nicol, Simon Sweeney, Murat Yakici

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


In this paper we investigate how information surrogates might be useful in exploratory search and what information it is useful for a surrogate to contain. By comparing assessments based on artificially created information surrogates, we investigate the effect of the source of information, the quality of an information source and the date of information upon the assessment process. We also investigate how varying levels of topical knowledge, assessor confidence and prior expectation affect the assessment of information surrogates. We show that both types of contextual information affect how the information surrogates are judged and what actions are performed as a result of the surrogates
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)437-462
Number of pages26
JournalInformation Processing and Management
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 30 Mar 2008


  • information surrogates
  • exploratory search
  • information sources
  • assessor confidence
  • contextual factors
  • prior expectation
  • topical knowledge

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