Award of Merit Peter Ingwersen: statement

Dr. Ingwersen has made and he continues to make, remarkable contributions to the field of Library and Information Science. The overarching theme of Dr. Ingwersen’s research interlinks the fundamental essence of the disciplinary triangle of information, people, technology and their relationships; and he stands as one of the most widely published and highly cited researchers in the field of Library and Information Science.

Dr. Ingwersen’s research encompasses two chief domains (1) information retrieval, and (2) bibliometric and especially, webometrics.

Hi is known for development of Cognitive Theory of Information Retrieval, as an attempt to globalize information retrieval through the representation of all components in a holistic approach. Traditional models of information retrieval (Boolean, vector, probabilistic), paid little or no attention to the social context of the tasks of indexing and searching. If we consider information seeking and the ways users use the information retrieval systems, we cannot neglect the social context and thus the cognitive aspects. Dr. Ingwersen made this apparent by leading the way in investigating the cognitive processes of interaction between people and systems. He analyzed the impact of computer technology on the search behavior of individuals, and the application of this approach in the information industry, such as structural representations with different levels of complexity cooperating in a process of interactive communication. Ingwersen emphasizes that these are the binding factors of this theory: the subjective nature that every individual and the context in which it operates; that is, studying their mood, their area of interest, the degree of motivation, and other factors.

Derived from the cognitive IIR model, he and associates created the poly-representation of information needs for improving IIR design. This model, based on inferential logic, indicates that the more evidence one has via consultation documents and the relationships between them, the more likely that the results will resemble the information needs of the user. This is what Ingwersen called intentional redundancy. In short, he created a theory and a school that many others have followed. In recognition of his contributions to IIR, he received several prestigious awards, most recently, the 2015 UKeiG Tony Kent Strix Award.

In scientometrics and informetrics, he has developed indicators and metrics to evaluate scientific research across organizations, disciplines, and countries. Peter Ingwersen is not only a rigorous researcher but also an innovative mind that is quick to identify and explore new ideas. He is called the father of Webometrics. Since he and Thomas C. Almind coined the term, Webometrics has grown into an established research area. JASIST published a special issue on Webometrics in 2004. In recognition of this work, Peter Ingwersen received the 2005 Derek de Solla Price Medal.

Peter Ingwersen is one of the most prolific contributors to peer-reviewed journals, books, encyclopedia, and conferences in information science worldwide. His research impact is evident also by the citation indices. Thomson Reuters recognized Peter Ingwersen with the 2005 Thomson Award of Excellence in Denmark for being the internationally most highly cited Danish researcher in the social sciences.

Beyond research, Ingwersen’s significant contributions to the field are also reflected by his teaching and mentoring of new generations of researchers in information science all over the world. As a professor, Peter Ingwersen is a beloved mentor and advisor and a dynamic teacher to many young researchers, doctoral students, and students of his courses. Many of his students and mentees have become successful researchers, academics and award winners. As a luminary in the field, not only does Peter Ingwersen support and encourage the new generation of researchers by commenting on their works and providing tenure and promotion reviews in rarely achieved thoroughness, but he also recognizes them by citing their works.

Peter Ingwersen is a leader and visionary in the field. He has been selected to many editorial boards of prestigious scholarly journals including J.Doc, IPM, JASIST, ARIST, and Scientometrics. He was elected to the International Advisory Board of China’s iSchool in Wuhan. He collaborates with international researchers through lectures, conferences, and research projects.

The award is well deserved!

Virginia Ortiz-Repiso
Chair of ASIS&T European Chapter
Department of Library and Information Science. Universidad Carlos III de Madrid

Peiling Wang
School of Information Sciences. College of Communication and Information.
The University of Tennessee Knoxville