• Web issue analysis: an integrated water resource management case study

      Thelwall, Mike; Vann, Katie; Fairclough, Ruth (Wiley InterScience, 2006)
      In this article Web issue analysis is introduced as a new technique to investigate an issue as reflected on the Web. The issue chosen, integrated water resource management (IWRM), is a United Nations-initiated paradigm for managing water resources in an international context, particularly in developing nations. As with many international governmental initiatives, there is a considerable body of online information about it: 41,381 hypertext markup language (HTML) pages and 28,735 PDF documents mentioning the issue were downloaded. A page uniform resource locator (URL) and link analysis revealed the international and sectoral spread of IWRM. A noun and noun phrase occurrence analysis was used to identify the issues most commonly discussed, revealing some unexpected topics such as private sector and economic growth. Although the complexity of the methods required to produce meaningful statistics from the data is disadvantageous to easy interpretation, it was still possible to produce data that could be subject to a reasonably intuitive interpretation. Hence Web issue analysis is claimed to be a useful new technique for information science.