Macau, China
Fifth International Workshop on
Web Information Retrieval Support Systems
December 4, 2012 (Macau, China)
WI 2012:
WI 2012:
WI 2012:
WI 2012:
Other Workshops

The Fifth International Workshop on Web Information Retrieval Support Systems will be held in collaboration with the 2012 IEEE/WIC/ACM International Conference on Web Intelligence (WI 2012), December 4 - 7, 2012 in Macau, China.

WIRSS Overview

The traditional definition of information retrieval focuses on automated searching within digital collections. The goal is to find all the relevant documents, while selecting as few of the non-relevant documents as possible. One drawback of this definition is that it provides little acknowledgment of the activities people may wish to perform with the information retrieval system. The underlying assumption is that people are able to accurately convey their information needs to the system, and that providing ranked lists of documents will satisfy these needs.

Two key aspects of conducting Web searches, crafting queries and evaluating search results, are inherently human tasks. Searchers have mental models of the information needs they wish to satisfy, and draw upon their knowledge of other related concepts as they seek documents that may be relevant to this information need. When using a Web search engine to assist in fulfilling an information seeking goal, a balance must be struck between computer automation and human control. It is the human decision-making aspect of Web search that the WIRSS Workshop aims to enhance and promote. Such systems are especially valuable for Web search tasks that are ambiguous or exploratory in nature.

While traditional Web search systems focus on search and browsing functionalities, WIRSS focuses on the functionalities that support user-centric tasks that are performed with the Web search system. In order for users to extract useful information from the Web, and be able to make effective use of this information, users must take an active role in the tasks associated with Web search. These tasks include crafting and refining queries; browsing, investigating and exploring search results sets; and analyzing, understanding, and organizing retrieved documents.

Fundamentally, this is a change in the design philosophy which moves the focus of Web search from the documents being searched to the tasks that people need to perform. We believe this philosophical shift will mark a move towards next-generation Web search systems, and a transition from information retrieval to knowledge retrieval.

The aim of this full-day workshop is to build upon the success of the previous International Workshops on Web Information Retrieval Support Systems (WIRSS) held in 2008, 2009, 2010, and 2011. We wish to bringing together academic and industry researchers to discuss advances in providing intelligent support for the the user-centric tasks associated with Web search. Researchers from diverse filed such as information retrieval, artificial intelligence, human-computer interaction, information visualization, Web systems, natural language processing, and agent systems are invited to contribute to this workshop.

Issues to be Explored

The issues that we wish to explore within the WIRSS Workshop include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • interactive query refinement
  • search results representations and visualization
  • search results exploration
  • re-finding information
  • search results storage and organization
  • document summarization
  • personalization
  • multi-level and multi-view representations
  • Web search user behaviour
  • user studies of Web search interfaces
  • knowledge management systems
  • semantic web
  • human-centred search
For more information on the WIRSS Workshop, contact Dr. Orland Hoeber (orland.hoeber <at>