An information modeling approach to improve quality of user-generated content

Lukyanenko, Roman (2014) An information modeling approach to improve quality of user-generated content. Doctoral (PhD) thesis, Memorial University of Newfoundland.

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Abstract

Online user-generated content has the potential to become a valuable social and economic resource. In many domains – including business, science, health and politics/governance – content produced by ordinary people is seen as a way to expand the scope of information available to support decision making and analysis. To make effective use of user-generated contributions, understanding and improving information quality in this environment is important. Traditional information quality research offers limited guidance for understanding information quality issues in user-generated content. This thesis analyzes the concept of user-generated information quality, considers the limits and consequences of traditional approaches, and offers an alternative path for improving information quality. In particular, using three laboratory experiments the thesis provides empirical evidence of the negative impact of class-based conceptual modeling approaches on information accuracy. The results of the experiments demonstrate that accuracy is contingent on the classes used to model a domain and that accuracy increases when data collection is guided by classes at more generic levels. Using these generic classes, however, undermines information completeness (resulting in information loss), as they fail to capture many attributes of instances that online contributors are able to report. In view of the negative consequences of class-based conceptual modeling approaches, the thesis investigates the information quality implications of instance-based data management. To this extent this thesis proposes principles for modeling user-generated content based on individual instances rather than classes. The application of the proposed principles is demonstrated in the form of an information system artifact - a real system iii designed to capture user-generated content. The principles are further evaluated in a field experiment. The results of the experiment demonstrate that an information system designed based on the proposed principles allows capturing more instances and more instances of novel classes compared with an information system designed based on traditional class-based approaches to conceptual modeling. This thesis concludes by summarizing contributions for research and practice of information/conceptual modeling, information quality and user-generated content and provides directions for future research.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral (PhD))
URI: http://research.library.mun.ca/id/eprint/8233
Item ID: 8233
Additional Information: Includes bibliographical references (pages 163-181).
Department(s): Business Administration, Faculty of
Date: August 2014
Date Type: Submission
Library of Congress Subject Heading: User-generated content--Classification; Management information systems; Conceptual structures (Information theory); Database management

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