Creator of Knowledge
Information Resources Management Association
Advancing the Concepts & Practices of Information Resources Management in Modern Organizations

Encyclopedia of Information Science and Technology, First Edition

Encyclopedia of Information Science and Technology, First Edition
Author(s)/Editor(s): Mehdi Khosrow-Pour, D.B.A. (Information Resources Management Association, USA)
Copyright: ©2005
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-59140-553-5
ISBN13: 9781591405535
ISBN10: 159140553X
EISBN13: 9781591407942


View Encyclopedia of Information Science and Technology, First Edition on the publisher's website for pricing and purchasing information.


Technology is constantly changing; what is cutting edge today is obsolete tomorrow. In this ever-evolving environment, educators, researchers and professionals of the discipline need access to the most comprehensive knowledge about the concepts, issues, trends and technologies in this hi-tech field.

The Encyclopedia of Information Science and Technology is the first work to map this ever-changing field. It is the most comprehensive, research-based encyclopedia consisting of contributions from over 900 noted researchers in over 50 countries. This five-volume encyclopedia includes more than 550 articles highlighting current concepts, issues and emerging technologies. These articles are enhanced by special attention that is paid to over 5,000 technical and managerial terms. These terms will each have a 5-50 word description that allow the users of this extensive research source to learn the language and terminology of the field. In addition, these volumes offer a thorough reference section with over 11,500 sources of information that can be accessed by scholars, students, and researchers in the field of information science and technology. These wide-ranging, user-friendly alphabetically organized volumes are an important addition for your library collection.

Table of Contents



The information technology revolution is for all practical purposes a second industrial revolution in the history of mankind, impacting every facet of business, society, and life worldwide with a speed beyond imagination. As in the case of the industrial revolution, the growth and expansion of information technology began during the early 1950s but continued on through the following decades. During the 1960s and ‘70s, computer technology was mainly utilized in business data processing and scientific applications of a mostly number crunching nature. As a result, the use of this technology was limited to those who had a good command of these systems and computer programming languages. With the merge of computers and telecommunications in the 1980s, a new information technology was born with a strong focus on the management and dissemination of information by both information providers and users. However, the advent of personal computers and the ability of users to communicate with each other regardless of their locations directed information technology into the lives of all society.

The most noticeable explosion in the information technology revolution was the creation of the World Wide Web (WWW) and its potential in the early 1990s. During the past two decades, WWW technologies have become the driving force in allowing people worldwide to communicate and exchange information in ways that have created a totally new dimension known as a virtual world. In recent years, through the use of web-enabled technologies, organizations of all types and sizes around the world have managed to utilize these technologies to conduct both information processing and dissemination with their prospective customers, suppliers, students, and governments. These technologies, now allowing readily available information for everyone regardless of their geographic location, bring the true meaning of the information age to its full realization.

In recent years, the science of understanding the nature of information processing and management combined with computer and telecommunication technologies to process, disseminate, and manage information has become known as “Information Science and Technology.” This new science includes many resources and components, including: 1) Type of Information; 2) Computer Hardware Technologies; 3) Computer Software Technologies; 4) Telecommunication Technologies; 5) Technology Applications; 7) Information Processing Systems Structures; 8) Systems Personnel and Management; 8) End Users; and 9) Management Skills and Programs (Khosrow-Pour & Yaverbaum, 1990).

Because information science and technology has profoundly impacted science, business, society, and every other aspect of life on our planet, numerous researchers around the world have focused on accumulating knowledge on this discipline. The volume and intensity of research in the field of information science and technology has by far exceeded many other fields of science, and the sheer impact of research discoveries in this area has become the driving force of many emerging technologies and applications. No longer is this discipline limited to a few technology-related areas, but, similar to the field of medicine, the field of information science and technology today is a collection of many specific disciplines researchers have created. This collection process has been accomplished by producing research results to understand the potentials, problems, and challenges of each individual discipline and by trying to expand the body of literature related to the topics of that discipline.

To access the latest research related to the many disciplines of the information science and technology field, I decided several years ago to launch an encyclopedia project where researchers from all over the world would assist me in providing the necessary coverage of each respective discipline in information science and technology. The primary objective of this project was to assemble as much research coverage related to the disciplines selected for this encyclopedia by defining the technologies, terms, and acronyms related to each discipline, and providing the most comprehensive list of research references related to each discipline. I had hopes of creating a single comprehensive reference source on all related discipline topics of information science and technology.

To provide the most comprehensive, in-depth, and recent coverage of information science and technology, disciplines carefully selected for this encyclopedia project included: Accounting Information Systems, Computing History, Database Management and Technologies, Data Warehousing and Mining, Decision Support Systems Technologies, Distance Education Technologies, E-collaboration, Electronic Commerce Technologies Management, End User Computing, Enterprise Resource Planning, Expert Systems, Geographical Information Systems, Global IT Management, Human Computer Interaction, Human Side of IT, Information Resources Management, Information Security Management, Information Systems Research, Information Technology Education, IT Evaluation Methods and Management, IT Management in Libraries, IT Management in Healthcare, IT in Small Business, IT Personnel, Professional IT Association, Intelligent Information Systems, Knowledge Management, Minorities in Information Technology, Mobile Computing and Commerce, Multimedia Information Management, Objected Oriented Technologies, Open Source Technologies and Systems, Social Responsibility in the Information Age, Software Engineering, Strategic IT Management, Telecommunications and Networking Technologies, Unified Modeling Languages and Unified Process, and Virtual Communities and IT.

In order to provide the best balanced coverage of concepts and issues related to the selected topics of this encyclopedia, researchers from around the world were asked to submit proposals describing their proposed coverage and the contribution of such coverage to the encyclopedia. All proposals were carefully reviewed by the editor-in-chief in light of their suitability, researcher’s records of similar work in the area of the proposed topics, and the best proposal for topics with multiple proposals. The goal was to assemble the best minds in the information science and technology field from all over the world to contribute entries to the encyclopedia. Upon the receipt of full entry submissions, each submission was forwarded to at least three expert external reviewers on a double-blind, peer review basis. Only submissions with strong and favorable reviews were chosen as entries for this encyclopedia. In many cases submissions were sent back for several revisions prior to final acceptance.

As a result, this five-volume encyclopedia includes more than 550 entries highlighting current concepts, issues and emerging technologies. All entries are written by knowledgeable, distinguished scholars from many prominent research institutions around the world. Five thousand technical and managerial terms enhance these entries. These terms each have a 5-50 word description that allows the readers of this extensive research source to learn the language and terminology of the field. In addition, this five-volume set offers a thorough reference section with over 11,500 sources of additional information for scholars, students, and researchers in the field of information science and technology to access.

To assist readers in navigating and identifying needed information, this five-volume encyclopedia has been organized by listing all entries in alphabetical order by title throughout the five volumes, and by including the title in the regular “Table of Contents” in the beginning of each volume. Furthermore, all entries are organized under their prospective discipline/area and placed in a separate table of contents at the beginning of each volume. In addition, a comprehensive glossary of all terms will direct readers to the short definition on the subject. A keyword index is also available, listing important keywords included throughout all entries.

To keep up with emerging technologies and research discoveries, regular entry additions will be made to the online version of the encyclopedia. I am pleased to add that complimentary online access to this encyclopedia for the life of the edition will be provided to any library with the purchase of the print copy. This complimentary online availability will allow students, faculty, researchers, and corporate managers to access the latest contents of this comprehensive and in-depth encyclopedia regardless of their location. This particular feature will prove to be an extremely valuable resource for distance learning educational programs worldwide.

The diverse and comprehensive coverage of multiple disciplines in the field of information science and technology in this five-volume authoritative encyclopedia will contribute to a better understanding all topics, research, and discoveries in this evolving, significant field of study. Furthermore, the contributions included in this encyclopedia will be instrumental in the expansion of the body of knowledge in this vast field. The coverage of this five-volume encyclopedia provides strength to this reference resource for both information science and technology researchers and also decision makers in obtaining a greater understanding of the concepts, issues, problems, trends, challenges and opportunities related to this field of study. It is my sincere hope that this publication and its vast amount of information and research will assist my research colleagues, all faculty, their students, and our organizational decision makers in enhancing their understanding of this discipline. Perhaps this publication will even inspire its readers to contribute to the current discoveries in this immense field, tapping possibilities to assist humankind in making the world a better place to live for all inhabitants of this universe.


Reviews and Testimonials

This publication has been indexed in the DBLP Computer Science Bibliography.


This five-volume set is most impressive not only for the efforts that went into its development, but also for its exceptional quality, organization, and value to a wide variety of excellent addition to nearly any library.

– Reference & User Services Quarterly 45(3)

With the immeasurable wide range of topics covering remarkably just about every important aspect of information science and technology, the Encyclopedia of Information Science and Technology is an essential resource for students and educators, researchers, professional information technologists, and all libraries.

– Journal of Business and Finance Librarianship, Vol. 11 (1) 2005

"Faculty wanting to expand their IT knowledge will be well served. Students faced with papers to develop will appreciate well-written introductions to their topics, along with resource lists and glossaries for each entry."

– CHOICE, September 2005, Vol. 43 No.1

"This set is best suited to academic libraries, particularly information systems and business collections, and library and information science collections. Special libraries and large public libraries may also find it of interest."

– Library Journal, May 15, 2005

I would recommend this encyclopedia as a reference work to any tertiary academic library, full stop. Large secondary school libraries would find it very useful, and the price is so reasonable that many could afford it. It should be purchased by all large and medium-sized public libraries. Some individuals, especially academics teaching information systems, ought to buy it, too.

– Online Information Review, Volume 25, No. 4

The reader can dip into any volume and find interesting data and issues.

– Education Libraries, Winter 2004 Issue

As an MIS professor, I am constantly faced with staying abreast of technology changes. The Encyclopedia of Information Science and Technology is an exhaustive and convenient method of meeting these needs. I would recommend these volumes to all of my technical and behavioral information technology colleagues.

– Information Resources Management Journal, Vol. 18, Issue 3, 2005

"This encyclopedia will be useful in large university reference collections and corporate libraries, and is a must-have for all libraries supporting library and information science programs."

– American Reference Books Annual (ARBA), March 2005

"... a good purchase for a library school, largely because of its broad range of topics relating to information science and technology."

– Issues in Science and Technology Librarianship, Spring 2005

"Many of the topics, such as data mining, distance learning, knowledge management, and web applications, are pertinent to librarianship."

– Library Journal, May, 15 2005 <

p> "Quite simply, this is a very significant publication. It is impressive in its size and scope, scholarly in its content, delightful in its physical presentation, and what's more, it all comes for a very reasonsable price."

– Online Information Review, Volume 25, No. 4

"This collection belongs in every academic library because of the scope, range and reference utility."

– E-Streams

"This is an invaluable source for practitioners, and an important addition for academic and major public libraries."

– Abstracts of Public Administration, Development, and Environment (APADE)

"This collection of books represents the most thorough research and writings from the experts from all over the world in Information Systems. This encyclopedia is easy to read and navigate through. A must have for anyone in Information Technology."

– Professor Shirley Fedorovich, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, USA

"An encyclopedia specifically devoted to information science and technology is an idea whose time has come. It is a perfect addition to any library's reference section. Not only can a reader find a topic of interest researched using up-to-date references, but s/he can locate topics of related interest with relative ease. A worthwhile accomplishment."

– Professor Edward Szewczak, Canisius College, USA

"The Encyclopedia of Information Science and Technology can serve as a most useful reference for any researcher beginning to explore a new area of information systems."

– Professor France Belanger, Virginia Tech, USA

"I have to commend the editor for undertaking such an enormous task in putting together these five volumes of Encyclopedia of Information Science and Technology."

– Mo Adam Mahmood, Ellis and Susan Mayfield Professor in Business Administration at the University of Texas at El Paso, USA

"The Encyclopedia of Information Science and Technology offers a comprehensive, unique repository of research contributions provided by leading scholars from around the globe."

– Professor Shirley Ann Becker, Florida Institute of Technology, USA

"The work's global scope is principally an asset."

– Library Journal, May, 15 2005

Author's/Editor's Biography

Mehdi Khosrow-Pour, D.B.A. (Ed.)
Mehdi Khosrow-Pour, D.B.A., received his Doctorate in Business Administration from the Nova Southeastern University (Florida, USA). Dr. Khosrow-Pour taught undergraduate and graduate information system courses at the Pennsylvania State University – Harrisburg for almost 20 years. He is currently Executive Editor at IGI Global ( He also serves as Executive Director of the Information Resources Management Association (IRMA) ( and Executive Director of the World Forgotten Children’s Foundation ( He is the author/editor of more than 100 books in information technology management. He is also currently the Editor-in-Chief of the International Journal of Green Computing, International Journal of Library and Information Services, International Journal of E-Entrepreneurship and Innovation, and International Journal of Natural Computing Research, and is also the founding Editor-in-Chief of the Information Resources Management Journal, Journal of Electronic Commerce in Organizations, Journal of Cases on Information Technology, and the Journal of Information Technology Research, and has authored more than 50 articles published in various conference proceedings and scholarly journals.


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