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Contextualising risk: the unfolding information work and practices of people during the COVID-19 pandemic

Lloyd, A; Hicks, A; (2021) Contextualising risk: the unfolding information work and practices of people during the COVID-19 pandemic. Journal of Documentation 10.1108/JD-11-2020-0203. (In press). Green open access

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Abstract

Purpose: The aim of this study is to investigate people's information practices as the SARS-CoV-2 virus took hold in the UK. Of particular interest is how people transition into newly created pandemic information environments and the ways information literacy practices come into view. / Design/methodology/approach: The qualitative research design comprised one-to-one in-depth interviews conducted virtually towards the end of the UK's first lockdown phase in May–July 2020. Data were coded and analysed by the researchers using constant comparative and situated analysis techniques. / Findings: Transition into new pandemic information environments was shaped by an unfolding phase, an intensification phase and a stable phase. Information literacy emerged as a form of safeguarding as participants engaged in information activities designed to mitigate health, legal, financial and well-being risks produced by the pandemic. / Research limitations/implications: Time constraints meant that the sample from the first phase of this study skewed female. / Practical implications: Findings establish foundational knowledge for public health and information professionals tasked with shaping public communication during times of crisis. / Social implications: This paper contributes to understandings of the role that information and information literacy play within global and long-term crises. / Originality/value: This is one of the first studies to explore information practices during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Type: Article
Title: Contextualising risk: the unfolding information work and practices of people during the COVID-19 pandemic
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1108/JD-11-2020-0203
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1108/JD-11-2020-0203
Language: English
Additional information: This version is the author accepted manuscript. For information on re-use, please refer to the publisher’s terms and conditions.
Keywords: Information literacy, COVID-19, Risk, Transition, Practice theory, Qualitative
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of Arts and Humanities
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of Arts and Humanities > Dept of Information Studies
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10121120
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