A study of informal communication among fishery scientists

Chia Hsiang Chen, Hao Ren Ke

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


Informal communication between scientists is generally believed to contribute to the sharing of knowledge and expertise. We conducted a qualitative research study to explore informal communication behaviors of scientists at the Taiwan Fisheries Research Institute (TFRI). The study examines the two main concepts of Luo's research framework: communication zones and information exchange. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with fifteen scientists from different departments at TFRI between February and April, 2016. Each interview took 45 min on average. The interviews were audio-recorded and analyzed thematically, and two key themes were identified. The results reveal the factors affecting information exchange among fishery scientists and reveal that proximity assists informal communication. Fishery scientists tend to prefer face-to-face communication. Availability of support, which is financial, moral, or both, from a supervisor is an important incentive in facilitating communication behaviors. It establishes a basic foundation for scientists' informal communication in the future. Because the sample is small, future research should be expanded to an inter-organization scale in order to understand the informal communication behavior of different organizations.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-6
Number of pages6
JournalProceedings of the Association for Information Science and Technology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2016


  • Fishery scientists
  • Scholarly communication
  • informal communication

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Computer Science
  • Library and Information Sciences


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