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International Journal of Libraries and Information Studies

Editor-in-Chief: Albright, Kendra S. / Bothma, Theo J.D.

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Volume 60, Issue 3 (Jan 2010)


All the World's a Stage – the Information Practices and Sense-Making of Theatre Professionals

Michael R. Olsson
  • Senior Lecturer, Journalism, Information and Media Studies Group, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, University of Technology, Sydney, Australia. Email:
Published Online: 2010-11-04 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/libr.2010.021


This paper reports on the findings of a study examining how theatre professionals (actors, directors and others) make sense of the works of a culturally iconic author (William Shakespeare). The study aims to address critique of prevailing approaches' excessive focus on active information seeking and searching (Julien, Where to from here? Results of an empirical study and user-centred implications for information design, Taylor Graham, 1999; Wilson, Informing Science 3: 49–55, 2000) by developing a more holistic approach, one which acknowledges the complexity of sense-making as more than the problem-solving behaviour of individuals – as an embodied, social process, involving emotion as well as rationality. In doing so it draws on theoretical approaches from a range of different disciplines and traditions, including Dervin's Sense-Making, Foucault's discourse analysis and Derrida's deconstructionism. The findings of the study are based on interviews with 35 theatre professionals in Canada, Finland and the UK.

About the article

Received: 2010-10-09

Revised: 2010-02-14

Accepted: 2010-02-16

Published Online: 2010-11-04

Published in Print: 2010-09-01

Citation Information: Libri, ISSN (Online) 1865-8423, ISSN (Print) 0024-2667, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/libr.2010.021. Export Citation

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