Dr. Catherine Blake, assistant professor at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill's School of Information and Library Science (SILS), has won the 2007 JASIST John Wiley & Sons Best Paper Award.
The two-part article, "Collaborative Information Synthesis, Part I" and “Collaborative Information Synthesis, Part 2: Recommendations for Information Systems to Support Synthesis,” co-written with Wanda Pratt, was published in the Journal of the American Society for Information Science and Technology.
The award recognizes the best refereed paper in the current volume year of JASIST. It was presented to Blake and Pratt at the 2007 ASIS&T Annual meeting.
According to the ASIS&T awards Web site, "Blake and Pratt's beautifully crafted two-part article is an exemplary study of the collaborative information synthesis process. The study design allowed for sustained interactions with participants through which rich data about practice was gleaned. Rather than relying on one method of gathering qualitative data the authors employed an in-depth triangulated approach that reached beyond information seeking to consider analysis and synthesis, key components of scientific work that have been under-explored. The authors practice exemplary scholarship by frequently mentioning how their findings corroborate existing information behavior models and demonstrating scholarly courtesy when reporting findings that differ from those of earlier researchers. The study is further enriched by the collaboration the authors embody between the disciplines of information science and biomedical and health informatics. The robust evidence-based results serve as a highly constructive model for designers of medical and health information systems.
"The jury believes that this work by Blake and Pratt is highly relevant and contributes significantly to the field of information science both theoretically and empirically. It is, therefore, most worthy of the 2007 John Wiley & Sons Best JASIST Paper Award."
Blake has been a faculty member at SILS since January 2004. She teaches courses in Text Mining, Knowledge Discovery, Databases, and Information Tools. Her research interests include text mining, information synthesis, multi-document summarization, recognizing textual entailment and paraphrasing, information extraction, and meta-analysis.