2021-07-08Bachelorarbeit DOI: 10.18452/23047
How is Information Avoidance currently understood and researched?
Information Avoidance (IA) is an important aspect of human Information Behaviour, which is far less often studied than its counterpoint Information Seeking. Despite this, multiple overviews exist (e.g. Sweeny et al. 2010; Manheim 2014 or Golman et al. 2017), though there is no current overview within Information Science. Thus this thesis combines research from communication, psychology, economics, health and information science, to create an overview of common theories, research-methods, reasons and appearances of IA behaviour. It closes with an overview of still open questions. This thesis found that the definition of IA varied widely between researchers, to the extend that a single definition would be impossible to create. However some trends could be identified: IA became more commonly assumed to be predicted by situations, instead of traits. More and more researchers began to understand it as neutral behaviour, instead of a solely negative one. Topics formerly belonging to other non-seeking-behaviour (e.g. Information Overload or Satisficing) were researched as aspects of IA. Finally while many research areas (e.g. psychology, communication) combined their knowledge, many more could benefit from doing so. There were also still mostly unexplored topics. These were positive IA, temporal IA, as well as IA Behaviour by groups or animals.