Clare Thornley


2005 - PhD Information Retrieval. University of Strathclyde

1997 - MSc Information Management. University of Strathclyde

1991 - MA Mental Philosophy. University of Edinburgh

Research Interests

Bibliometrics and other methods of evaluating research impact

Information ethics

Information retrieval theory


  • Clare Thornley, (2012) Information retrieval (IR) and the paradox of change: An analysis using the philosophy of Parmenides, Journal of Documentation, Vol. 68 Iss: 3, pp.402 - 422.


  • Clare V. Thornley, Shane J. McLoughlin, Andrea C. Johnson, and Alan F. Smeaton. A bibliometric study of Video Retrieval Evaluation Benchmarking (TRECVid): A methodological analysis. Journal of Information Science published 4 November 2011, 10.1177/0165551511420032. Available:
  • Thornley, C., Johnson, A., Smeaton, A. and Lee, H. 2011. The Scholarly Impact of TRECVid (2003-9). The Journal of the American Society for Information Science and Technology. Vol.62 No.4, pp. 613-627
  • Thornley, C., Gibb, F., Ferguson, S. and Weckert, J. Do RFIDs provide new ethical dilemmas for librarians and information professionals? The International Journal of Information Management. Vol.31 No.6, pp. 546-555. Available:
  • Gibb, F., Thornley, C., Ferguson, S. and Weckert, J. The application of RFIDs in libraries: an assessment of technological, management and professional issues. The International Journal of Information Management. Vol. 31 No.3, pp. 244-251. Available:
  • Thornley, C. Teaching IR as problem based learning. In. Efthimiadis, E.N., Fernández Luna, J.M., Juan Huete, J. and MacFarlane, A. (Eds) Approaches to Teaching and Learning Information Retrieval. Springer Verlag


  • Hegarty, B. and Thornley, C. 2010. With your unconstraining voice still persuade us to rejoice: poetry promotion in public libraries. An Leabharlann: The Irish Library, Vol.19 No.2, pp.25-29


  • Thornley, C. 2009. Dilemmas in information science (IS) and information retrieval (IR): recurring challenges or new solutions? Aslib Proceedings: new information perspectives, Vol. 61 No.3, pp.323-330
  • Thornley, C. and Gibb, F. 2009.Meaning in philosophy and meaning in information retrieval (IR). Journal of Documentation, Vol. 65 No.1, pp.133-150


  • Thornley, C. 2008. Teaching information retrieval as a philosophical problem. Second International Workshop on Teaching and Learning of Information Retrieval. 18 October, London, UK. Available from


  • Thornley, C. and Gibb, F. 2007. A dialectical approach to information retrieval. Journal of Documentation, Vol.63 No. 5, pp.755-764



  • Thornley, C. 1995.Working with Volunteers: Personnel Issues. London: The Volunteer Centre UK
  • Thornley, C. 1995. Volunteering Information. Assignation (Aslib Social Sciences Information Group and Network), Vol.12, No.4


  • Thornley, C. 1994. Volunteering across Europe. In: Horton, R. (Ed.) Volunteering Matters: Developments in volunteering 1992-1994. London: The Volunteer Centre UK

Peer-reviewed conference presentations

  • ‘Unity in LIS theory, for and against: unity in diversity or irreconcilable conflict?’ at the International Conference of Conceptions of Library and Information Science (CoLIS, 2010)
  • ‘Radio Frequency Identifiers (RFIDs) and surveillance: new ethical dilemmas for libraries?’ at the Eighth International Conference of Computer Ethics: Philosophical Enquiry (CEPE 2009)