VI. Research of Prof. A. Basden

This section details research in which I have been involved. It includes:

The relationship between research programmes and research projects is many-to-many.

(I apologise for the self-promoting style of writing; the text below was derived from an application for a post.)

VI-1. Research Overview

My research activity started 50 years ago in computer aided design and programming but, partly because I had a dozen years outwith academic life, has extended to become highly interdisciplinary in nature, covering a variety of areas, including of application, undergirded by Dooyeweerd's philosophy. When I was warded my Chair in 2004, the Vice Chancellor told me the University wanted me to "explore this Dutch philosopher in relation to information systems" and that is what I have been doing ever since, though, having been brought into the Business School, I extended that exploration to other fields and research in general.

VI-2. Research Leadership

Much of my leadership in research lies in developing innovative ideas, including both models, methodologies and philosophical frameworks for understanding issues. (By 'innovative' I mean that I created, developed and promoted ideas that were not being actively discussed by the research community at the time even though they were relevant.) This has been with my PhD students, with colleagues and on my own. Most of the innovative ideas I have generated over the last 50 years are still of current validity.

(See also Academic Leadership.

VI-2.1 Research Leadership in Dooyeweerd's Philosophy

I am acknowledged internationally as the foremost applier of Dooyeweerd's philosophy in the world, and the University of Salford is known throughout the world as the centre of this. During my investigation of application of Dooyeweerd's philosophy my research leadership has been in the following areas.

VI-2.2 Earlier research leadership was in the following areas:

VI-3. Funding Summary

Summary of funding secured by Prof Andrew Basden
Project Funding Other
1989-1991. 'KBS for Housing Associations' EPSRC (unknown amount), 1 R.A. 1
1990-1992. 'KBSIU: Knowledge Based Systems in Use' SERC GR/F 90592, £80,000, 1 R.A at Salford. 2
1991-1994. EDESIRL: 'Client-Centred Methodlogy', 'Client-Centred Approach' SERC GR/F 99397//4/1/2062, GR/J 19047, £980,000, 4 R.As. 4
1991-1994. 'Integrating GIS and KBS for Ecological Management' UFC Computer Board, £160,000, 1 R.A. 5
1990-1992. 'Intelligent Authoring' SERC GR/G 20011, £60,000, 1 R.A. 2
1993-1995. 'INCA - Intelligent Authoring of Complex Documents' SERC GR/J 17982, £130,000, 2 R.As. 2
1994-1998. 'KINDS: Knowledge based Interface to National Data Sets' JISC NT/107, £184k, 1 R.As at Salford. 3
1997-1999: KINDS-2 JISC £97k to Salford; total project was probably around £300k. 1 R.As. at Salford. 3
1997-2000: ICT: 'Intelligent Computation of Trust' EPSRC: GR/L 54295, £ 130k. 1 R.A. 2
1998-2005: Knowledge Servers Part of one R.A. of ICT project, and self-funded. 0
1996-2006: Drawing Knowledge and Meaning One of my PhD students is taking this research forward, in addition to my own development of Istar. 0
1999: Predispositions of I.S. Professionals Unknown amount: full living and travelling expenses for Tarja Kuosa to come to the U.K., including children and their schooling, for three months. 1
2001-2003: C-SanD: Creating, Sustaining, and Disseminating Knowledge for Sustainable Construction, Tools, Methods and Architectures EPSRC, £147k. 1 R.A. at Salford. 5
2001-2004: KACTUS: Knowledge Based Decision Aid for Sustainability EPSRC £32k, and University of Salford Research Fund £32k. Research undertaken by 2 PhD students. 1
2003: Study Leave: 'An Integrative Philosophy for Information Systems' Award of 6 months study leave 2003 (equivalent to approx £30k for salary + overheads). 0
2004-6. DPA: Distributed Programmable Authorization. EPSRC £181k. 1 R.A. 1
2004-7. TrustCoM: Trust and Contract Management Framework Enabling Secure Collaborative Business Processes EU £250k approx. 1 R.A. at Salford. 3
2005-2008. Metanexus/SophiaEurope. Religious Roots of Information Systems Metanexus Institute. $15000. 2
2005-2008. Leverhulme Visiting Chair for Heinz. K. Klein. Leverhulme Trust - £45000, but curtailed. 0
2006 - 2018: Developing Integrative Framework for the Digital Information Systems Field. Award of 6 months study leave 2003 (equivalent to approx £30k for salary + overheads); Scholarship from the Herman Dooyeweerd Foundation: £1,600, 2003. 0
2010 - 2020: Exploration of Dooyeweerd's Relevance to Research Dooyeweerd Research Fund £6,000; Selwyn Trust £6,000; also three PhD students who contributed to this work, otherwise self-funded. 0

VI-4. Research Programmes

This section describes the main, long-term research programmes (as opposed to projects, which are described in the next section) in which I have been involved, with main publications and other results generated under the programme so far. Though these are not formally funded as such, I call them this because they are long-term frameworks within which I carry out all my other research, providing a coherent thread for it. These research programmes are ones of my own design and formulation, so that I can be said to have leadership in each. I explain each programme and identify publications generated under it.

VI-4.1 Application of Dooyeweerd's Philosophy

Since 1995 I have been explore the application of Dooyeweerd's philosophy to information systems and other fields. From 2004 this was my official mandate and remit as a professor. Initially this was in the field of information systems, as a framework for understanding and evaluating benefits and harm, but it then expanded to knowledge elicitation, information systems development, information systems in society and the nature of computers. This developed into the research programme of Philosophical Foundations of Information Systems. I also introduced Dooyeweerd to Prof. Peter Brandon and Patrizia Lombardi, who applied his ideas in sustainability, as well as helping and mentoring those applying Dooyeweerd in other fields.

Outputs: Almost every publication since 1995.

VI-4.2 Philosophical Foundations for Information Systems

This long-term research programme is concerned with finding sound, integrated, philosophical foundations for information systems as a whole ('The whole story that is information systems'), covering all areas including:

Currently, those in each of the five areas adopt different philosophical foundations and do not engage meaningfully with each other. The aim of this research programme is twofold:

Such frameworks for understanding can act as paradigms that guide scientific research and world views that guide practice, but the intent is that they be made explicit, and that the framework for each area relates to those of other areas. Dooyeweerdian philosophy has been chosen because it seems able to address issues in every area without robbing them of their meaning, and thus avoid tendencies to either reductionism on one hand or fragmentation on the other.

This highly innovative philosophical framework [Dooyeweerd, 1955], not only promises a sound theoretical foundation for all such issues but does so in a way that integrates them all, and is able to handle interdisciplinary situations and applications, to integrate theory and practice, to provide a multi-aspectual notion of success and failure, and integrate determinative with normative aspects.

In the early period, from 1987 to the mid 1990s, this part of my research was motivated by the lack of an overall Theory of Application of Knowledge Systems that can guide the practice of system development and use, but it has now widened in scope. During that period I employed two main ideas, Newell's [1982] concept of the knowledge level and other levels as distinct and irreducible ways of describing information systems, adding an extra level, the tacit level, and the notion of of programming as communication, in which the important aspects of knowledge representation were the communication of knowledge to the eventual users rather than the control of machine behaviour, and was published as 'A radical rethink of information systems in the context of intelligent authoring' [Basden, 1994]. I still find these two central ideas useful, but now see them as parts of a wider approach based on Dooyeweerdian philosophy.

Indeed, this research programme has now become my central research thrust for the next ten years, and the other programmes, though continuing, are related to it.

Important in this work is the web site, The Dooyeweerd Pages, which is a growing collection of articles and discussions about Dooyeweerdian ideas, designed to both provide information and explanation of Dooyeweerdian ideas, to provide links with other thinkers and with applications, and to stimulate debate.

Dooyeweerd was a critical philosopher, and I have been linking and comparing his approach with that of Habermas and others (Basden, 2002).


Chapters in Books Articles in Refereed Journals Articles in Refereed Conference Proceedings Articles in Non-Refereed Conference Proceedings Major Web Sites Other Results:

VI-4.3 Usage, Benefits and Impact of Information Systems

Even the best and most usable technology can still fail to provide the benefits expected of it (Landauer, 1996). The primary user can find it hinders work tasks and alters roles, other stakeholders can be affected in adverse ways, and there is often indirect and longer term impact, on the organization, environment and society, that is not predicted. It is important for information systems design and evaluation, therefore, that we gain an understanding of information systems usage, benefits and impact. Such an understanding must apply to individual users, organizations, multiple stakeholders, and to indirect impact, and must have a sound theoretical basis so that it can apply across varying contexts. But, to date, while guidelines based on experience have been offered, very little sound theoretical basis for these issues exists.

From early days [Basden, 1983], I have been concerned with the usefulness of new technology. Whenever I was involved in the design of KBSs, I focused on usefulness, and this gave a relatively high success rate (measured in terms of proportion that came into regular use). In the KBSIU project, which studied one of these in use (see below), we not only studied the factors that were important in usage, but also generated a model of the dynamics of impact of information technology artifacts placed into a working (human) situation. The model copes with indirect, unexpected, multiple, long-term impacts as well as direct, expected, focused, short-term.

But we must go further: on what basis may we differentiate beneficial from detrimental use, success from failure? Especially harm to one stakeholder, benefit to another? This needed philosophy, and neither positivist, subjectivist, criticalist approaches sufficed. I found that Dooyeweerdian philosophy (see above), with its notion of irreducible distinct spheres of normativity, the aspects, enabled us to expand the model to differentiate positive from negative impact (success from failure) independent of human perspectives, making it useful in multi-stakeholder situations. The approach has been taken further, to address long term impacts as well as short term, immediate impacts, and to cover predispositions in a way useful to futures studies. This research has provided considerable material for my teaching in human factors, knowledge based systems and strategic issues in information systems. It also influences all my other research.

Under this research thrust comes also my research into methodologies for building systems, and for knowledge acquisition, in which I was particularly involved between 1985 and 1995, since such methodology is challenged by the need to take future usefulness into account. Books

Chapters in Books Articles in Refereed Journals Articles in Refereed Conference Proceedings Articles in Non-Refereed Journals Articles in Non-Refereed Conference Proceedings Reports, etc. Other Results:

VI-4.4 Knowledge Based Systems

I joined ICI plc in 1980 to work on the new technology of expert systems (knowledge based systems, KBS). I was at first disappointed that, instead of developing a better KBS technology, I was given an existing KBS software and told to go round the company finding ways to apply it - but that turned out to be the best thing that could have happened because it forced me to face challenges that were not then being faced: how to elicit truly ill-structured and uncertain knowledge, and to work with skeptical domain experts and bring them 'on-board' (the Auscor project), how to harness the power and limitations of Bayesian reasoning in a variety of real applications, how to, not just build or deliver a system, but ot bring to to use, and how to ensure benefit when in use. The approach that developed within me was to see the technology in its wider context (Basden, 1983) and to focus on understanding when eliciting knowledge (Attarwala and Basden, 1985). I then brought all this experience to bear when I left ICI in 1986 for the University of Salford to work on the ELSIE project with quantity surveyors.

From then on, having joined academic staff and having my own research remit, I developed what I had learned from practical KBS development into a full KBS development methodology, Client Centred Methodology and Approach, a full-fledged KBS development tool, Istar, and, with my research student and colleague, Mike Winfield, a sophisticated knowledge elicitation method, MAKE. CCA is described later; the latter two are described below.

Elsie KBS became widely used in the surveying profession. In the KBSIU project we studied its use. This began our formal interest in Usage and usefulness.

VI-4.4.1 Istar

Istar, developed first within the INCA project, was primarily motivated by the need to be able to capture ill-structured, fleeting knowledge without the user interface 'getting in the way' (the importance of which had been impressed upon me in my practical KBS development). So, against the prevailing tendency of the time, which made text or point-and-click the main method for representing knowledge, and diagrams secondary, I decided that drawing on screen should be the main method, with text secondary. So Istar knowledge bases are drawn as box-and-arrows diagrams, with a highly proximal user interface.

The second motivation behind Istar was the philosophical intuition, derived from my practical experience developing KBS, that there were distinct 'aspects of knowledge', each of which should be given due respect ( appropriateness ) as a knowledge representation formalism. Facilities to represent each should be made available explicitly. It should be possible to design a KBS development tool that offered all aspects. In the KINDS project we attempted to couple a geographic information system with a knowledge based system (spatial knowledge to items and relationships), but it is better if all formalisms are offered in a single tool. Istar attempted to offer three such aspects: items and relationships, quantitative and qualitative values, and textual knowledge. The philosophical intuition also demanded that each aspect should be seen as a fundamental one, and be implemented as such, rather than being implemented on top of some other representation formalism such as PROLOG, LISP or even standard procedural code like C; for this reason, I implemented it directly in assembler code.

The third development of Istar concerned the nature of the inference session with the user: make it as flexible as possible, and offer the user plenty different explanation facilities. Istar was designed to be multi-threading.

The fourth development, later in the ICT project, was to make Istar into a knowledge server. Because of its multi-threaded architecture, it was relatively simple to replace the window-style user interface in which questions were asked with an interface to the Internet, so that Istar would act in a client-server relationship with browsers. As a result, all the knowledge bases already developed under Istar could be made available immediately to browsers worldwide, without needing to change the KB itself. That the interface with Internet is completely transparent to the KB is in sharp contrast to other attempts, in which the KB itself must include code to handle sockets and messaging. This is described in Basden [2002].

VI-4.5 Knowledge elicitation and MAKE - Multi-Aspectual Knowledge Elicitation

First, at ICI, I realised that it was necessary to elicit understanding rather than heuristic rules (experience), because this gave a more robust and understandable knowledge base (Attarwala and Basden, 1985).

The Mike Winfield joined me to undertake research for PhD in this area, and take the notion of eliciting understanding further. I explained Dooyeweerd's aspects to him and he used them to develop MAKE, Multi-aspectual Knowlege Elicitation method (Winfield, 2000). This has subsequently been developed further into a general interview technique by Suzanne Kane's Multi-aspectual Interview Technique (MAIT) [2006].

MAKE asks the expert (interviewee) to identify a couple of main aspects, engages in lower abstraction of concepts related to those aspects, and gradually develops a linked network of aspectual concepts. From time to time it becomes clear that a new aspect has emerged, and the expert is invited to identify it if they wish - and this continues until the expert feels they have elicited all the knowledge they wish to. MAKE is excellent at eliciting the kind of taken-for-granted knowledge that is often overlooked, is very efficient, and liberates the expert. Books

Chapters in Books Articles in Refereed Journals Articles in Refereed Conference Proceedings Articles in Non-Refereed Journals Articles in Non-Refereed Conference Proceedings Reports, etc. Other Results:

VI-4.6 Integrated Knowledge Representation and IRKit

Though the knowledge representation community has made great strides in understanding and representing conceptual knowledge, including uncertain knowledge, it has not been very successful with spatial or textual knowledge; indeed these are seldom even discussed within the community. The motivation behind the research in this area is to find an approach to integrating conceptual, quantitative, spatial, textual, diagrammatic, process and other aspects of knowledge, that is both theoretically sound and also implementable in software. It builds on the findings of my early research in spatial layouts, the GIS/KBS project (spatial knowledge) and the INCA project (textual and conceptual knowledge), as well as incorporating extant ideas from mainstream knowledge representation research, and makes use of data structuring ideas I originally explored in my PhD research.

In addition, not only does the software need to represent knowledge internally, but the human being needs to express that knowledge, and it is not clear that current means of doing this are entirely appropriate for every type of knowledge. For this reason, this research must explore the notion of drawing knowledge in natural ways, and of proximal user interface, both of which are mentioned below.

It is a research programme rather than single project, with two threads. First, the theoretical foundation for integration has been founded on the concept of appropriateness (Basden, 1993), and distinct aspects of knowledge. The foundation emerged from my early experience in ICI plc. but now also involves Dooyeweerd's concepts of irreducible aspects, mentioned above.

The second thread is to provide a software architecture for implementing this. Only if this can be achieved (even in part) can we claim any validity for the theoretical foundation. To this end, from around 1987 I have been slowly developing IRKit, a software foundation and architecture that provides a flexible basis for integrated knowledge representation. IRKit is, in fact, the software foundation for much of the funded research mentioned below (Istar), and this in turn has contributed to IRKit. IRKit is also designed to be able to support mixed diagramming, as mentioned below.

There are a number of innovative factors in this thread. First, the architecture is dictated by the above notion of 'appropriateness', and implemented according to the notion of Levels of Meaning discussed below (Basden, 1994b). Doing this allows us to determine to what extent these two philosophical ideas are not only useful theoretical constructs but also valid in practical systems development. Second, IRKit has been built from scratch (with assembler language kernel routines) partly because the notion of Levels, mentioned above, suggests a novel architecture, partly to shield its embryonic ideas from contamination by ideas and fashions that currently dominate the software engineering communities, and partly because adopting extant software architectures, such as some found in object orientation, would impose constraints and overheads that are inimical to the notion of appropriateness. Third, the architecture has been designed to include the means by which higher levels have influence that is reflected in the innermost layers of their implementations.

My continued involvement in actual implementation is because, as Anderson and Dyson (2000) stress, software architectures require vision and loyalty, and innovative ideas cannot be delegated to others until they have gained some stable form. The IRKit architecture is coming to the point where it is sufficiently mature to be set in the context of other work and published.


Chapters in Books Articles in Refereed Journals Articles in Refereed Conference Proceedings Articles in Non-Refereed Journals Articles in Non-Refereed Conference Proceedings Reports, etc. Major Web Sites Other Results:

VI-4.7 Human-Computer Interaction

For the decade of the 1990s, my research community was HCI 'human computer interaction', but it has never as such been one of my research programmes. Rather, I have been interested in, and made contributions in two specific areas of this, which are described above:

VI-4.8 Multi-Aspectual Sustainability

This research started as an activity and interest outside my main work, stimulated by my Christian faith (concern for God's Creation) and green activism. But it is now impinging on, and becoming part of, my main research and work, so I consider it a minor but significant research thrust rather than a full-blown programme. The main research is to explore an understanding of sustainability, employing Dooyeweerd's idea of aspects. I was instrumental in guiding Patrizia Lombardi to base her PhD research on this idea and formalise it (Lombardi, 1999). There is also a theological element in this work.

I have not sought to publish this work in academic literature but, as the list of publications shows, especially in section {X3.8, X3.10}, I have for many years written on environmental and theological matters and made contributions to planning in local authorities. In the latter, I have taken an innovative approach. While most environmental comment on local authority plans often take an anti-development or even NIMBY (not in my back yard) stance, I was the first to adopt the two-part response (Basden, 1986) which overcomes these, in which part 1 discusses the principles which should guide policy and part 2 contains comments on proposed policies explicitly based on principles in part 1. This allowed us to question the assumptions made by planners at the time, suggest more appropriate foundational guidelines, and at the same time engage with the detailed debate on policy. On the basis of such contributions I have been invited to write articles and make presentations. Chapters in Books

Articles in Refereed Journals

Articles in Non-Refereed Journals Articles in Non-Refereed Conference Proceedings Reports, etc. Other Publications Major Web Sites Other Results:

VI-4.9 Theology

Theology began as a private interest, arising out of trying to understand my life-commitment to Jesus Christ, especially in the light of my concern for God's Creation and green activism, and my involvement in information technology. The central questions that motivate my work in this area is:

My main activity in this area consists of developing ideas via websites, and contributing to group activities, including the John Ray Initiative, The Christian Academic Network and the West Yorkshire School of Christian Studies.

Articles in Refereed Journals

Articles in Non-Refereed Journals Articles in Non-Refereed Conference Proceedings Reports, etc. Other Publications Major Web Sites Other Results:

VI-4.10 Scholarship and Religious Belief

Traditionally, religious belief is kept separate from academic scholarship in most fields, probably under the influence of the presupposition of what has been called a sacred-secular divide. For most of my academic life, this has felt inappropriate to me because religious belief or commitment (a broad defintion of religious belief, which includes Atheism) has long had influence on scholarship, at various levels: the behaviour of scholars, the theories they produce, the worldviews or paradigms adopted, and the presuppositions made. Conversely, scholarship in various secular fields has impacted religious belief. I have been part of a perspective that seeks to understand these links, especially those of presuppositions and worldviews.

Chapters in Books

Articles in Refereed Journals Blogs, Reports, etc. Other Publications Major Web Sites Other Results:

VI-5. Research Projects

This section lists the research projects in which I have been involved. I list below the research projects in which I have been, or am presently, involved, including both funded and unfunded research. I include the latter where it has contributed innovative ideas or is important to my whole research, and has yet to be funded. I also include research carried out before coming to the University of Salford in 1986 since this also contains innovation. Where the research is funded I state funding body, amount and partners. In the description of each research project I identify what I consider to have been innovative, if anything, by means of emboldened text.

In all, nearly two dozen such innovative ideas have been identified.

My research has always been tempered with the desire to bring theory and practice together - in a way that is both theoretically and practically sound (e.g. by being careful to retain direct experience of technical matters while contributing on social issues). It has also always been influenced by my non-professional commitments, including a Christian faith and environmental activism. My activity and output gained me a research rating of 5 in the 1994 Research Assessment Exercise, 5* in the 1996, and 5* in 2001.

It may be thought that this plethora of innovative ideas would be fragmented, but in fact there is a thread running through most of them, and they contribute to a coherent picture about information systems as a whole. The thread can be explained by the integrative discipline of philosophy, and I have found the philosophy developed by the Dutch thinker, Herman Dooyeweerd (1955) to be the most able in this respect.

1969-1973. PhD Project: Electronic Circuit Layout

'An Interactive System for Layout of Small Printed Circuit Boards'. This research was concerned with handling spatial layout, using topological as well as geometric methods. Designing and implementing flexible and efficient data structures to facilitate this was also a major challenge. In this research I adopted two approaches that were innovative. The first, innovative at the time, was to adopt a ring-based rather than list-based data structuring facility, which had the advantages of immense flexibility and later became the foundational idea for IRKit, below. The second, which is still innovative, was in the layout algorithms. Though a topological approach to layout had been proposed by a few other workers, I took it further in that it allowed me to break with the convention of positioning components before routing their conductors, and carry out topological routing before positioning. Because the positioning thus took the needs of routing into account, the algorithm generated very elegant and 'aesthetic' designs.

Funding: EPSRC PhD Studentship.
Supervisor: Prof. K.G. Nichols, Department of Electronics, University of Southampton.
Results: Papers, PhD Thesis; also the data structuring routines laid the foundation for IRKit below.

1975-1980: CLINICS

In this project, I was a research assistant in the Department of Community Medicine, University of Southampton, and developed a database system, CLINICS, to store and process data from a working general practice. The purpose of the system was to allow research into the quality of medical care. At the time little commercial database software existed for mini computers fo the kind we were using so I developed my own, written in COBOL, together with a suite of 30 programs to process, check, access and maintain the data. CLINICS was brought into use over a number of years. The main research challenge I faced included not only those associated with design and implementation of data models, but in particular the high degree of human interpretation and high rate of error and inconsistency encountered in general practice data. One innovation that I explored and implemented in this system was to have human and computer working in harmony, as opposed to seeing total automation ('batch processing') and total human control ('interactive') as mutually exclusive. This approach made it possible to clean up errors and escape the normal 'garbage in, garbage out' constraint.

Funding: Unknown to me; I was research assistant.
Partners: Dr. E. M. Clark, University of Salford.
Results: Academic papers and demonstrations.

1980-1985: AUSCOR and SYSLAG

This research was among the first that involved me in the technology of knowledge based systems (KBS), with in I was to have a long involvement that continues to the present day. It took place in ICI plc, where I was a member of its central research arm, Corporate Laboratory, and was undertaken in collaboration with Dr. J.G. Hines, an expert in corrosion of international renown. After a prototype KBS, SCCES, we developed two KBSs, AUSCOR and SYSLAG. The purpose of AUSCOR was to aid in prediction of stress corrosion cracking, a notoriously unpredictable problem for which expert judgement is essential. SYSLAG was built to advise on selection of insulation materials. The research challenges included how to elicit and then implement the relevant knowledge accurately in the technology then available, how to handle judgement therein, and how to make the knowledge usable. The work (which would now be described as Action Research) was innovative in three ways.

First, unlike most academic KBS projects at the time (and since) the focus was always on what would be useful, rather than on technical sophistication, with the result that we faced challenges at the knowledge level that few then recognised as important (Hines and Basden, 1986).

Second, I developed a knowledge acquisition method guided by model of knowledge (Attarwala and Basden, 1985) rather than by sophisticated techniques which proved to be highly effective and efficient in producing high quality knowledge bases, and which I have since used in my teaching. This was used in the ELSIE project with great effect, formed the starting point for Winfield's MAKE method.

Third, we developed a method by which the domain expert can undertake his own knowledge elicitation - an achievement that remained almost unique for the next fifteen years (Basden and Hines, 1986).

Funding: Internally funded by ICI plc. Partners: Dr. J.G. Hines, Central Engineering Laboratory., ICI plc. (principal) Dr. A. Basden, Corporate Laboratory, ICI plc. Results: Academic papers, Delivered and working KBSs.

1982-1986: Other Knowledge Based Systems at ICI

On the success of AUSCOR and SYSLAG I became involved in several KBS projects throughout the company and eventually became the company's chief expert of the technology. Though these were applications projects, I treated them as Action Research. There were three areas of innovation in addition to those explored in the AUSCOR research. First, in the Wheat Counsellor KBS [Jones and Crates, 1985] I developed the notion of the responsibly proactive knowledge engineer, which contrasted markedly with the assumed role of being a mere finder and translator of knowledge. Second, Wheat Counsellor was incorporated into a ViewData system so that it could be accessed from distant terminals (an early version of the knowledge server mentioned later), and I was responsible for reprogramming the KBS software to link with ViewData so that it could be used in a multi-user, multi-threaded manner. Third, while most KBSs at the time were aimed at aiding operational or tactical tasks, I was involved in advising on the design of a KBS (name not given because it was protected by company secrecy) aimed at advising on strategic business issues. Because these were extremely volatile in nature an innovative approach to KBS advice provision was taken, in which the KBS actively encouraged the user to disbelieve and explore the advice it gave. The germ of this idea originated with a colleague in the strategy section, I. Lang, but I soon realised that it had a much wider significance and I developed the concept that stimulating knowledge refinement in the user was a valid role for KBS and then proposed a more general framework of roles of knowledge based systems (Basden, 1983).

1986-1987: 'ELSIE'

This research, in which I was the chief knowledge engineer (in a team of three), was an Alvey-funded project carried out in the Department of Surveying, University of Salford. Its aim was to build a KBS to aid quantity surveyors in lead consultancy tasks such as advising clients on budget setting, but the research challenges included not only system development but also how to elicit high quality knowledge and how to make the resulting knowledge base usable in the real world. For knowledge elicitation I adopted and refined the methodology I had developed at ICI, and taught it to the other knowledge engineers. This research exhibited three innovations. First, this was the first attempt to apply KBS technology to a profession, as opposed to industry or finance, and the relatively ill-structured nature of professional knowledge made the knowledge elicitation challenge the more exciting. Second, I focused on usefulness to the users rather than on technical issues, and formed this approach into an initial prototype of what later became the Client Centred Method, below (EDESIRL). Third, the approach resulted in the KBS, ELSIE, being developed for sale and becoming, at the time, the most successful KBS worldwide in terms of number sold (1000 copies) and in use. Our success with not only building ELSIE but also getting it into beneficial use led to the EDESIRL project, below.

Funding: Alvey-EPSRC (unknown amount; the project was 18 months in duration and employed three research fellows and one secretary).
Partners: Prof. P.S. Brandon, Dept. of Surveying, Univ. of Salford (principal), The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors, London.
Results: Papers, conference presentations, books Commercial product, ELSIE, that, for a time, was the best selling KBS worldwide. A company, Imagninor Systems, was formed to capitalise on the success of the project.

1989-1991. 'KBS for Housing Associations'

This research, in which I was joint investigator, investigated the potential of knowledge based systems used for maintenance of housing stock. It turned out to be largely an applications project, but provided extra empirical input for the later EDESIRL project.

Funding: EPSRC (unknown amount), 1 R.A.
Partners: Prof. P.S. Brandon, Dept. of Surveying, Univ. of Salford (principal) Dr. A. Basden, I.T. Institute, Univ. of Salford
Result: Papers.

1990-1992. 'KBSIU: Knowledge Based Systems in Use'

This research, in which I was joint investigator, was concerned with studying the use and impact of the widely used, successful KBS, ELSIE. Research was in two areas, conducted by two collaborative teams. The team at Newcastle studied psychological issues of users' confidence and perception in using the system. The team at Salford studied issues of technology application, including benefits and changes to the tasks and roles of various stakeholders brought about by the use of the KBS. The main innovation in the Salford research was to study actual usage of a KBS and, from this, to develop a taxonomy and then a model of usefulness (benefits) as distinct from usability, which differentiates between technical features, human tasks and human roles (Basden, 1994). This model formed the foundation for later research into usage and usefulness of information systems (see below).

Funding: SERC GR/F 90592, £80,000, 1 R.A at Salford.
Partners: Prof. P.S. Brandon, Dept. of Surveying, Univ. of Salford (principal) Dr. A. Basden, I.T. Institute, Univ. of Salford Dr. G. Erdos, Dept. of Psychology, Univ. of Newcastle
Results: Papers, International Workshop, Conference Presentations.

1991-1994. EDESIRL: 'Client-Centred Methodlogy', 'Client-Centred Approach'

This large project, in which I was Research Manager, was concerned with developing methodologies for building knowledge systems that are suited to use by SMEs. Its formal title was 'EDESIRL', and its main research purpose was to formalise, into a defined methodology, the experience in building useful knowledge based systems I had gained in the ELSIE project and the several projects carried out at ICI plc. It was carried out in conjunction with the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors and involved around thirty member surveyors. The scope of this large project was the whole of the KBS development process and life cycle, and it resulted in the Client Centred Methodology and the Client Centred Approach (Basden, Watson and Brandon, 1995). The methodology was tested and refined by building three KBSs. There were several innovative factors in this research. First, the approach sought to avoid elevating any single aspect of application - whether technology, economics, user interface, etc. - and provided a foundation and method whereby all relevant aspects are properly handled. Second, in order to gain the advantages of both linear and iterative methods, the stages of the methodology were deliverables rather than activities (the latter was common at the time) allowing a certain flexibility, contingency and adaptability to organizational norms. Third, good human relationships were given emphasis and the methodology was explicitly designed to foster such as part of the project processes. Fourth, the client requirements are open to critique, whereas normally they constitute an absolute authority in the design process. Fifth, the resulting book (Basden, Watson and Brandon, 1995) was written to integrate theory and practice, and thus be of value to both academic theoreticians and practical system builders.

Funding: SERC GR/F 99397//4/1/2062, GR/J 19047, £980,000, 4 R.As.
Partners: Prof. P.S. Brandon, Dept. of Surveying, Univ. of Salford (principal) Dr. A. Basden, I.T. Institute, Univ. of Salford (Head of Research) Mr. A. Cox, Royal INstitution of Chartered Surveyors Mr. P. Melling, Imaginor Systems Mr. L. Poynter, Inference Europe Ltd.
Results: Academic Papers, Book, Conference Presentations, Professional Papers, Workshops.

1991-1994. 'Integrating GIS and KBS for Ecological Management'.

This research project sought to integrate knowledge based (expert) systems with geographic information systems in order to provide advice on environmental planning. The main research challenge was to effect an integration of spatial, conceptual and quantitative knowledge by linking KBS with geographic information system (GIS) technology, and then to use this to build information systems to support ecological management. Two such systems were built, embodying European knowledge of landscape ecology contextualised for the U.K. Two major results have emerged. This was one of the first projects to integrate spatial knowledge with KBS technology, and it has provided input to the current research on integrated knowledge representation, below. And the resulting technology proved able to support innovative methods of landscape ecology management.

Funding: UFC Computer Board, £160,000, 1 R.A.
Partners: Dr. A. Basden, I.T. Institute, Univ. of Salford (principal) Dr. J. Petch, Dept. of Geography, Univ. of Salford Dr. Y.J. Yip, I.T. Institute, Univ. of Salford Mr. B. Payne, Cheshire County Council Mr. I. Dale, Mersey Forest A.N. Other, ICL plc
Results: Papers, Conference Presentations. Also a version of the software was deposited in, and used at, the Mersey Forest office.

1990-1992. 'Intelligent Authoring'

This research, in which I was a joint investigator, was concerned with developing methods and structures for the authoring of construction contracts. It investigated the use of hypertext technology for amending standard forms of contract. While this approach could produce a low level tool, two results obtained. Intelligent support for contract authoring requires a more fundamental approach than amending standard forms, one based on understanding the roots and model of contracts. And hypertext technology, originally designed to aid the reader, has grave limitations as a basis for authoring. These results led to a second project on 'Authoring of Complex Documents', below.

Funding: SERC GR/G 20011, £60,000, 1 R.A.
Partners: Prof. P.S. Brandon, Dept. of Surveying, Univ. of Salford (principal) Prof. P. Hibberd, Dept. of Construction, Polytechnic of Wales Dr. A. Basden, I.T. Institute, Univ. of Salford
Results: Papers, Conference Presentations, Published Reports

1993-1995. 'INCA - Intelligent Authoring of Complex Documents'

This research, in which I was principal investigator, was motivated by the findings of the Intelligent Authoring project above. It sought to use knowledge based technology to aid the authoring of construction contracts from first principles rather than by amending standard forms of contract. The INCA system intelligently identifies contract content from client requirements and then expresses those in text to form a contract. The research challenges were many, not least that little good quality knowledge was available about the principles of construction contracts, a different type of KBS technology would be needed and a different relationship between the human and computer.

Meeting these challenges resulted in seven innovative factors. First, since this could be seen as an applications project, a 'two stream research' method (Basden, 1994b) was devised by which both the application and the information technology elements should gain real research benefits, rather than one being merely a service to the other. Second, because it did not exist, the relevant knowledge would be generated by the process of knowledge representation rather than being acquired prior to it. Third, this demanded a much closer relationship between the knowledge representation tool and its users, so that their flow of thinking was not interrupted (Basden and Hibberd, 1996). Fourth, a new 'proximal' user interface had to be developed, which turned out to be not just a minor advance of conventional graphical user interfaces but a completely new paradigm in which long-held assumptions no longer applied (Basden, Brown, Tetlow and Hibberd, 1996). This has opened up a major new line of research which is now gaining pace (see below). Fifth, this required the development of a purely graphical knowledge representation 'language', in which knowledge is 'drawn' rather than 'entered'. Though graphical views of knowledge bases were available at the time, in the main these were merely a graphical display of knowledge that had already been entered, at best an alternative means of knowledge entry; in INCA it was the primary and only means of entering the main knowledge. (This spawned research into 'Drawing Knowledge and Meaning' described below.) Sixth, to facilitate this a new knowledge representation kernel had to be built in which inference is seen as graph search rather than as the firing of rules (Brown and Basden, 1996). Seventh, new approaches to intelligent text generation were explored, including some incorporation of linguistic pragmatics.

The project was successful in both streams, with the knowledge representation toolkit, Istar (Basden and Brown, 1996), being placed in the public domain, and the prototype contracts knowledge base currently running via a portal on the World Wide Web (Basden, 2000a). The potential of this approach extends beyond the technology; it opens the way to contractor and employer designing a contract that more closely expressed their agreement and thereby reduces the adversarial nature of construction projects.

Funding: SERC GR/J 17982, £130,000, 2 R.As.
Partners: Dr. A. Basden, I.T. Institute, Univ. of Salford (principal) Prof. P. Hibberd, Dept. of Construction, Univ. of Glamorgan Prof. P.S. Brandon, Dept. of Surveying, Univ. of Salford Results: WebSite, Istar Knowledge Representation Toolkit placed in public domain, Academic journal papers, Conference Presentations, Internet knowledge server (later; see below).

1994-1998. 'KINDS: Knowledge based Interface to National Data Sets'

The GIS/KBS project had shown the potential for coupling knowledge based inference with spatial data; this project sought to extend that by adding a user interface based on the world wide web that gave user-friendly access to a variety of online datasets, including the U.K. National Census, Bartholomew's Maps and satellite data. The motivating problem was that much of this data is underused because potential users do not know how it could benefit them. To overcome this, a knowledge based system was designed to advise users at a data satisfies their requirements. The KBS was informed by the concept of knowledge refinement mentioned earlier, and also by the model of usage mentioned below, and employed the Istar software from the INCA project. The research challenge was mainly at the knowledge level: what to take into account to properly advise users which information would suit their highly diverse and ill-defined tasks. The main innovation was to try to employ KBS technology for such ill-structured knowledge. For various reasons outside the science, this project was not as successful as we had hoped.

Funding: JISC NT/107, £184k, 1 R.As at Salford.
Partners: Dr. J. Petch, Manchester Metropolitan University (principal) Dr. Y.J. Yip, University of Salford Dr. A. Basden, University of Salford Dr. K. Cole, University of Manchester
Results: Papers, Conference Presentations.

1997-1999: KINDS-2

The KINDS project confirmed the need for and feasibility of providing better access to national datasets. But one factor that became clear during the research was that with each use of the data, new information about that use is generated which may be of benefit to other potential users. How can users share their experience to avoid performing the same kinds of analyses over and over again? The aim of this project was to find a way whereby the results of analyses of data can be fed back and become part of the datasets held. The system was constructed but, by the end of the project, had not been adequately populated to allow any definitive evaluation.

Funding: JISC £97k to Salford; total project was probably around £300k. 1 R.As. at Salford.
Partners: Dr. J. Petch, Manchester Metropolitan University (principal) Dr. Y.J. Yip, University of Salford Dr. A. Basden, University of Salford Dr. K. Cole, University of Manchester
Results: Papers, conference presentations, software in public domain.

1997-2000: ICT: 'Intelligent Computation of Trust'

With the increasing reliance on internet-mediated information, there is a growing need to assess the degree of trust that a user may place in information apparently received from a distant site. This requires bringing complex and contingent knowledge to bear on each such assessment, such as can be offered by a knowledge based system attached to, and seeking information across, the internet. The project uses the Istar KBS software developed in the INCA project and extends it. The main innovation in this research is the attempt to provide a structured way of assessing such an intangible factor as trust, and the exploration mechanisms built into Istar prove very important. The project has also contributed to the development of the knowledge server, below.

Funding: EPSRC: GR/L 54295, £ 130k. 1 R.A.
Partners: Dr. D.W. Chadwick, University of Salford (principal) Dr. A. Basden, University of Salford Steve McGibbon, Lotus
Results: Papers in academic journals, conference papers, and a demonstration system publicly available as a knowledge server.

1995-2003: PUI - Proximal User Interfaces

In many types of application - such as virtual environments, games and creative thinking - the user must be so closely involved with the software tool that it becomes 'proximal' (Polanyi, 1967). They are no longer aware of the user interface. They are aware only of the task they are carrying out. But standard graphical user interfaces (point and click) are too 'distal' and 'get in the way' (Norman, 1990). This research, which emerged from the INCA project, seeks to establish the nature and principles of the Proximal User Interface (PUI), and to implement PUIs in software. So far, two have been implemented: for Istar and for Annotator, described elsewhere. The innovative nature of this research is that the notion of proximal user interface seems to be a new paradigm for user interface research and development, being based on a different set of mutually supportive assumptions than have guided UI research over the last 30 years. In particular, standardization assumes a more secondary importance, and a number of factors that hitherto have been seen as accidental are elevated to the status of primary principles. The idea is philosophically grounded and itself provides theoretical foundations for such well known concepts as direct engagement, direct manipulation, etc. It is linked to my other research on integrated knowledge representation and drawing knowledge. Principles for PUI have been enumerated and design guidelines are being drawn up. It is attracting growing interest in UI community.

Funding: Not yet funded, though other projects contribute to this research, which grew out of the INCA project. It has been integrated with the IRKit research.
Partners: Dr. A. Basden, University of Salford.
Results: Academic and conference papers, Conference presentatons.

1996-2000: Annotator

The sources traditionally analysed by historians have been textual, but there is a wealth of pictorial material that it has so far proved difficult to analyse and then to communicate that analysis. Computer graphics, though helpful in some ways, suffers from two problems: it modifies the material itself and it cannot produce a the kind of sophisticated knowledge base containing the concepts that arose during analysis.

The Annotator package, produced in this research and based on IRKit, seeks to integrate computer drawing with knowledge handling technology so that as the analyst annotates the pictorial material a knowledge base is automatically constructed, and the material itself is not modified. This gives the possibility of a more intensive and sophisticated analysis that exhibits continuous reinterpretation and can be explained and communicated more easily. Further application could be to analysis of satellite images, historical photographs such as weddings, etc. This research, most of which was undertaken in 1997, has provided important input into Drawing Knowledge and Meaning, and also provides another vehicle for exploring Proximal User Interface.

Funding: Not yet funded; part of the IRKit and PUI research.
Partners: Dr. A. Basden, Univesity of Salford (principal) Mr. A. C. Sawyer, Department of History, University of Southampton
Results: Software publicly available, Paper in preparation.

1996-2006: Drawing Knowledge and Meaning

This research takes the results of the INCA project and Annotator further by generalizing them. The aim of this research is to open the way to a more natural way of drawing knowledge and expressing meaning dynamically as part of the user's flow of thinking. This requires that the act of drawing is accompanied by the automatic construction of a suitable knowledge base. While visual programming languages can achieve some of this, they have two problems. They tend to be too 'distal' (see PUI) for use as a thinking tool, and, in the main, they are restricted to one type of diagram (objects and relationships expressed as boxes and arrows). They cannot, for example, by employed to create contour maps or surface coverage diagrams.

The challenge of this research is to identify the different types of diagram, and understand their basis so that a facility for drawing them can be implemented in software. Since many pre-computer era diagrams contained mixed types, a further challenge is to produce drawing software that can handle mixed diagrams easily. This is being undertaken by my research student Kamaran Fathulla.

This research is innovative in explicitly recognising the theoretical foundation of diagrams as a mapping between spatial and symbolic aspects, and using that to guide software architecture. Its emphasis on mixed diagrams, and on the dynamics of the drawing process as an aid to thinking, are also innovative. It makes use of, and in turn influences, the notion of Proximal User Interface, and IRKit has been designed to provide the basic software architecture needed to implement mixed diagrams.

The Istar visual knowledge representation toolkit was designed to embody these principles of drawing knowledge.

Funding: One of my PhD students is taking this research forward, in addition to my own development of Istar.
Partners: Dr. A. Basden, University of Salford.
Results: Workshop papers and presentations.

1998-2005: Knowledge Servers

A problem with knowledge based systems is isolation of their knowledge, both from other relevant knowledge and also from those who could benefit from it, especially those in developing countries. A problem with the Internet is that it is hard for the user to engage in mixed-initiative dialogue that more precisely identifies what the user really needs. Combining the two into a knowledge server, in which the Internet is used as a gateway to a continuously running KBS, could overcome these problems. The Istar software has been extended so that it can act as a knowledge server, and is currently running with a selection of KBs on a demonstration web site. The user not only gains advice tailored to their needs expressed during the mixed-initiative dialogue, but can also explore the knowledge that led to this advice. Surprisingly, though KBS and Internet technologies have been linked to yield intelligent agents and distributed artificial intelligence, this kind of knowledge server seems to be innovative (Basden, 2000a).

The main research innovation thus far has been to redesign the inference engine to work in a multi-threaded, multi-user manner that copes well with the vagaries of the Internet. A slight innovation is that its design has been influenced not only by the technical features of the Internet but also by the way people tend to use it.

But a new research challenge is opening up: how to make the proffered knowledge valid and useful across different cultures - how to make the selection of contents for its dynamic web pages truly culture-sensitive is a question that has yet to be seriously addressed.

Funding: The ICT project, above, has contributed motivation and some time to this work.
Partners: Dr. A. Basden, University of Salford.
Results: Academic journal and conference papers, public domain software, and demonstration systems on the Web.

1999: Predispositions of I.S. Professionals

The aim of this short collaborative project, undertaken with Tarja Kuosa of the University of Tampere, Finland, was to discuss and publish a paper that put forward the little-debated notion that the shape of information technology is heavily influenced by the attitudes, assumptions and predispositions of I.S. professionals. We identified three main types of predisposition.

Funding: Unknown amount: full living and travelling expenses for Tarja Kuosa to come to the U.K., including children and their schooling, for three months.
Partners: Dr. A. Basden, University of Salford (principal). T. Kuosa, University of Tampere, Finland.
Results: Academic journal paper.

2001-2003: C-SanD: Creating, Sustaining, and Disseminating Knowledge for Sustainable Construction, Tools, Methods and Architectures

The construction industry needs to place more emphasis on knowledge issues if it is to achieve its targets of more sustainable processes, materials and products. Within certain projects knowledge about sustainability is being developed continuously, but there is little understanding of the best ways to foster the creation of this knowledge, less about how to capture such knowledge, and even less about how to ensure that knowledge is available quickly and easily to other individuals, companies and projects. This project aims to develop software tools to assist creation of new knowledge about sustainable construction, embed these tools in working methods, and define architectures for sharing of knowledge.

Funding: EPSRC, £147k. 1 R.A. at Salford.
Partners: Dr. D. Bouchlaghem, University of Loughborough (Principal), Dr. T. Cornford, London School of Economics. Prof. Y. Rezgui, University of Salford, Prof. G.S. Cooper, University of Salford, Dr. E. Ferneley, University of Salford, Dr. A. Basden, University of Salford.
Results: Academic journal papers, Conference presentations, workshops.

2001-2004: KACTUS: Knowledge Based Decision Aid for Sustainability

This research has three main aims: technical, environmental and philosophical. The technical aim is to develop knowledge management tools for evaluating sustainability. The enrironmental aim is to develop a practical framework for considering and assessing all the diverse aspects of sustainability. The philosophical aim is to test the hypothesis that Dooyeweerd's aspects (see below) provide a useful framework for evaluating sustainability.

Funding: EPSRC £32k, and University of Salford Research Fund £32k. Research undertaken by 2 PhD students.
Partners: Prof. P.S. Brandon Dr. A. Basden
Results: Conference presentations, academic papers.

2004-2006. DPA: Distributed Programmable Authorization

This project will tackle the complex problem of how to authorize access to resources that are distributed across the Internet without the need for a central controller while retaining global knowledge of the state of the resources.

Funding: EPSRC £181k. 1 R.A.
Partners: Prof. D.W. Chadwick Prof. A. Basden

2004-2007. TrustCoM: Trust and Contract Management Framework Enabling Secure Collaborative Business Processes

"The goal of the project is to provide a trust & contract management framework enabling the *on-demand formation* and *self-management* of *secure*, *scalable*, *highly dynamic*, *integrated* and targeted business coalitionsrelationships *sharing computation, data, information and knowledge* across enterprise boundaries, in order to tackle *supply chain management* and *collaborative projects* that their participants could not undertake individually."

Funding: EU £250k approx. 1 R.A. at Salford.
Partners: Salford: Prof. D.W. Chadwick, Dr. E. Ball, Dr. A Basden, Others in Ireland, Italy, etc.

2005-2012. Metanexus/SophiaEurope. Religious Roots of Information Systems

This is funded under the Local Society Initiative of the Metanexus Institute, as part of the SophiaEurope Project, which involves 14 other similar LSIs around Europe. The aim is to discuss, via workshops and papers, the religious roots of information systems, first to reflect on and explore all the ways one might encounter a religious commitment in the various areas of research and practice in information systems, preparatory to creating an authoritative guide to these. This work is made necessary by the growing recognition of the importance of religion.

Funding: Metanexus Institute. $15000.
Partners: University of Salford (Principal): A. Basden. University of Oxford: A. & E. Storkey University of Lincoln: C. Brooke

2005-2008. Leverhulme Visiting Chair for Heinz. K. Klein.

We were offered a Visiting Chair for Heinz Klein, a leading figure in information systems research, to impart knowledge and wisdom to the UK IS community, especially at the University of Salford. The funding was for 10 months' salary plus other expenses, spread over two years. Prof. Klein gave four Leverhulme Lectures on philosophical turns in IS. Sadly, Prof. Klein passed away during his tenure.

Funding: Leverhulme Trust - £45000, but curtailed.
Partners: University of Salford (Sole): A. Basden

2006 - 2018: Developing Integrative Framework for the Digital Information Systems Field.

The aim of this project was to bring together into one coherent perspective the various ways in which Dooyeweerd's philosophy can be applied with benefit in the field of digital (or information) systems. It sought to critically develop frameworks for understanding each of five major areas of interest, which could act as theoretical frameworks for each area and guide the research and critically evaluate paradigms in each area. The areas were five that had ssldom been brought together previously, and hence the project had an integrative purpose (the nature of computer systems, the shaping of information technologies, information systems development, information systems usage, benefits and impact, and our technological society). The main method was the theoretical work of converting intuitive experience and ideas into sound arguments, first to generated initial ideas for frameworks and then to critically link these to over 50 extant discourses and identify over 100 potential research projects for future work.

Funding: Award of 6 months study leave 2003 (equivalent to approx £30k for salary + overheads). Scholarship from the Herman Dooyeweerd Foundation: £1,600, 2003.
Partners: University of Salford (Sole): A. Basden
Outputs: Two major monographs [Basden 2008 ; Basden 2018].

2017 - 2020: Exploration of Dooyeweerd's Relevance to Research

The aim of this project was to survey, discuss and understand the potential of Dooyeweerd's philosophy to underpin, guide or assess research in any field, and thereby to critically reappraise the nature and direction of research as a human activity. The emphasis was practical as well as philosophical. Context: (a) Over the past few decades, research using Dooyeweerd's philosophy had been undertaken in many fields, especially interdisciplinary fields like information systems and sustainability, as well as in fields as disparate as statistics, text analysis and trust. This project attempted to draw this experience together. (b) Whilst there have been many discussions of research methods and approaches in various fields, separately, there had been no attempt to understand the nature, limitations, methods and approaches of research as such across all fields and any field. This project attempted to do this with Dooyeweerd's philosophy as a foundational understanding of what research is about. The method was desk study, and to write a monograph in order to sort and clarify ideas.

Funding: Dooyeweerd Research Fund £6,000; Selwyn Trust £6,000; also three PhD students who contributed to this work, otherwise self-funded.
Partners: University of Salford (Sole): A. Basden
Outputs: Monograph [Basden 2020 ].

2017-2020: Dooyeweerd and Systems Thinking

The aim of this project is to explore how Dooyeweerd's ideas can critically enrich and integrate the disparate streams in systems thinking, to the benefit of both. The project draws on 20 years of mutual interaction between the two fields, especially in the Centre for Philosophy, Technology and Social Systems. A survey of systems thinking was carried out, and papers were written to clarify and develop ideas of the way Dooyeweerd's philosophy can affirm, critique, enrich and integrate each of seven streams of systems thinking.

Funding: Self-funded
Partners: University of Salford (Sole): A. Basden
Outputs: Book chapter [Basden 2018 ].
Paper [Basden 2021 in press].

VI-6 Supervision of Research Students

Name: Rebecca Goh. Dates: 1988-1989, awarded MSc by Research, 1989 Title: Pragmatics of Knowledge Representation

Name: Anthony Henshall. Dates: 1990-1995, awarded PhD 1996 Title: Tacit Knowledge and its Acquisition

Name: Mike Winfield. Dates: 1990-2000, awarded PhD 2000 Title: Multi-Aspectual Knowledge Elicitation

Name: Suzanne Kane. Dates: 2002-2006; awarded Ph.D. 19th July 2006. Title: Multi-Aspectual Interview Technique.

Name: Kamaran Fathulla. Dates: Awarded Ph.D. 2007. Title: Symbolic Spatial Mapping

Name: Gareth Jones. Dates: Awarded Ph.D. November 2007 Title: Philosophy, Knowledge Based Systems and Sustainability

Name: Hawa Ahmad. Dates: January 2008 - 2013. Awarded PhD 14 Feb 2013. Title: Down-to-earth issues in the mandatory use of information systems. Now lecturer at International Islamic University, Malaysia, and using Dooyeweerd's philosophy in her work.

Name: Nick Breems. Dates: July 2009 - Nov 2014. Title: The Human Use of Computers Framework: Assessment using the Computer Procrastination Problem. Now Professor of Computer Science at Dordt College, Iowa, USA.

Name: (Name withheld). Dates: Awarded PhD 2015. Title: Making Sense of the Information Systems Use Field.

Name: Karen Swannack. Dates: Awarded PhD 2018. Title: Understanding Classroom Issues Encountered by Teachers: The Application of Dooyeweerd's Philosophy.

Name: Opeoluwa Aiyenitaju (nee. Adewolu). Dates: Awarded PhD 2018 Title: Understanding Classroom Issues Encountered by Teachers: The Application of Dooyeweerd's Philosophy.

Name: (Name withheld). Dates: Awarded PhD 2018. Title: Using Dooyeweerd's Aspects to Understand Down-to-Earth Issues in Use of Medical Records.

Name: Stephen McGibbon. Dates: Awarded PhD in 2018. Title: Towards an Aspectual Conception of Trust.

Advisor for Research Students

1995-1999: Advisor to Patrizia Lombardi, for PhD in environmental sustainability.

Cristina Orsatti: Dates: 2001-2006 Title: Philosophy and Sustainability Full time? Full Time Supervisors: Prof. P.S. Brandon

Manila de Iuliius: Dates: 2002- April 2010 Title: Sustainability in the urban environment Full time? Part Time Supervisor: Prof. P.S. Brandon.

and sundry others (to be added later).

This page is a section of the Curriculum Vitae of Prof. Andrew Basden.

Last updated: 19 December 2003, 1 April 2004, 23 September 2004. 3 May 2005. 10 August 2005. 18 February 2006 updated research programmes; added kbs, theology. 27 February 2006 HCI. 19 July 2006 link to SophiaEurope, changed summary; updated PhDs. 30 April 2007. 18 March 2008. 4 November 2008 apol, rid u-net, isi.sfd, various tidies. 7 May 2009 hkk. 13 May 2010 Nick Breems, Ghadah Khojah, update RRIS, Leverhulme, Selwyn Trust. 22 March 2013 update Hawa Ahmad PhD award and some others, updated philosophy publications list. 24 November 2014 management of list of PhDs. 11 May 2019 phds. 23 January 2020 Phds. 4 February 2020 rearranged intro, added Research leadership, added projects and summary of funding. 14 February 2020 small changes. 15 February 2020 SARB, corrected Section numbers and some tidying up. 17 February 2020 Thomas Cook.