Hide and seek – the role of personality, sense of coherence and experiential information in hidden information needs

Jannica Heinström, Shahrokh Nikou, Eero Sormunen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

Abstract

Purpose: The aim of this study is to assess the impact of personality traits and sense of coherence (SOC) on concealing information needs out of shame. The study also investigates the link between concealed information needs and the use of experiential information for psychological wellbeing. Design/methodology/approach: A Partial Least Square ‐ Structural Equation Modelling (PLS-SEM) approach is used to assess and analyse the proposed conceptual model, which is based on the responses of 412 upper secondary school students. Findings: The findings reveal that personality traits not only have direct significant effects on concealing information needs but that their effects are also mediated by SOC. The positive relationship between concealed information needs and the use of experiential information is confirmed in the study. Originality/value: This study is the first to show that personality and SOC influence concealing information needs. Two pathways are found. Firstly, negative emotionality and a low SOC lead to a heightened sense of shame. Secondly, introversion induces a more guarded behaviour. The study, moreover, quantitatively demonstrates a link between concealed information needs and the use of experiential information for psychological wellbeing.

Original languageEnglish
JournalJOURNAL OF DOCUMENTATION
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - Oct 2021
Publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

Keywords

  • Concealed information needs
  • Experiential information
  • Information poverty
  • Personality traits
  • Sense of coherence
  • Shame
  • Stigma

Publication forum classification

  • Publication forum level 3

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Information Systems
  • Library and Information Sciences

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