Modelling interaction with economic models of search

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution book


Understanding how people interact when searching is central to the study of Interactive Information Retrieval (IIR). Most of the prior work has either been conceptual, observational or empirical. While this has led to numerous insights and findings regarding the interaction between users and systems, the theory has lagged behind. In this paper, we extend the recently proposed search economic theory to make the model more realistic. We then derive eight interaction based hypotheses regarding search behaviour. To validate the model, we explore whether the search behaviour of thirty-six participants from a lab based study is consistent with the theory. Our analysis shows that observed search behaviours are in line with predicted search behaviours and that it is possible to provide credible explanations for such behaviours. This work describes a concise and compact representation of search behaviour providing a strong theoretical basis for future IIR research.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationSIGIR '14 Proceedings of the 37th International ACM SIGIR Conference on Research & Development in Information Retrieval
Place of PublicationNew York, NY, USA
Number of pages10
Publication statusPublished - 3 Jul 2014


  • retrieval strategies
  • search strategy
  • search behaviour


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