Dr Sophie Rutter
BA (SOAS, London), MSc (Sheffield), PhD (Sheffield), SFHEA
Senior Lecturer in Information Management
+44 114 222 2659
Full contact details
2 Whitham Road
I joined the Information School at Sheffield in March 2019. I am currently researching hand hygiene at work for both office workers and those who work on the move. I am also working on a project that aims to create an agenda for embedding equality, diversity and inclusion (EDI) in usability testing. Previously as a research fellow in communication design at the University of Leeds (2018-2019), I worked with children on a co-design project to transform school toilets and motivate hand hygiene.
My PhD (Sheffield, 2017) focused on children’s use of search technologies and the influence of the school environment. I continue to be interested in using naturalistic methods with children and other user groups.
Prior to academia, I worked in industry for several years as the web and communications manager for the Port of London Authority (2001-2006), a project manager for Futura Interactive (2000-2001), and as an online publication coordinator for Donovan Data Systems (1993-1999).
- Deputy Programme Coordinator for MSc Information Management
- Module Coordinator for INF6060 Information Retrieval: Search Engines and Digital Libraries
- Research interests
I am the principal investigator on the hand hygiene at work project. This project currently has two strands. Strand one, in collaboration with the University of Leeds and Savortex (an SME specialising in hand hygiene technology), aims to understand how organisations and their employees perceive hand hygiene within the workplace. Strand two investigates the everyday experiences of mobile workers' access to facilities as part of their work.
I am the principal investigator on the embedding equality, diversity and inclusion (EDI) in usability testing project. This project aims to create an agenda that embeds EDI in usability testing.
I am also interested in how the environment influences the way people interact with information, what techniques people use to search for information, and how information use can be evaluated in different environments. My research so far has been broadly focused on school children, workplace settings, search interfaces and health communication.
I am interested in supervising PhD projects in the following areas
- Hand hygiene and more broadly health communication
- Information seeking behaviour
- Human Computer Interaction (HCI) studies
- Inclusive user research
- Smart hand sanitisers in the workplace : a survey of attitudes towards an Internet of Things technology. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 19(15). View this article in WRRO
- Effectiveness and efficiency of persuasive space graphics (PSG) in motivating UK primary school children’s hand hygiene. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 17(7). View this article in WRRO
- The visual representation of germs: a typology of popular germ depictions. Visual Communication. View this article in WRRO
- Representing search tasks in an information use environment : a case of English primary schools. Journal of Documentation, 75(6), 1370-1395. View this article in WRRO
- The intelligent library: Thought leaders’ views on the likely impact of Artificial Intelligence on academic libraries. Library Hi Tech, 37(3), 418-435. View this article in WRRO
- Academic libraries’ stance toward the future. Portal: Libraries and the Academy, 19(3), 485-509. View this article in WRRO
- Evaluating children’s handwashing in schools: an integrative review of indicative measures and measurement tools. International Journal of Environmental Health Research. View this article in WRRO
- Extending McKinsey’s 7S model to understand strategic alignment in academic libraries. Library Management, 40(5), 313-326. View this article in WRRO
- Search tactics used in solving everyday how-to technical tasks: Repertoire, selection and tenacity. Information Processing & Management, 56(3), 919-938. View this article in WRRO
- Communicating Handwashing to Children, as Told by Children. Health Communication. View this article in WRRO
- View this article in WRRO Using classroom talk to understand children’s search processes for tasks with different goals. Information Research, 24(1).
- How the information use environment influences search activities: a case of English primary schools. Journal of Documentation. View this article in WRRO
- Interlending and resource sharing in UK public libraries: A mixed methods study. Journal of Librarianship and Information Science, 50(2), 168-185. View this article in WRRO
- How do children reformulate their search queries?. INFORMATION RESEARCH-AN INTERNATIONAL ELECTRONIC JOURNAL, 20(1).
- Hand Hygiene Messaging Design – Views from the Workforce Introduction. Health Environments Research & Design Journal.
- Developing novel visual messages for a video screen hand sanitizer: a co-design study with students. Design for Health, 1-19.
- View this article in WRRO Using FaceReader to explore the potential for harnessing emotional reactions to motivate hand hygiene. Journal of Infection Prevention.
Conference proceedings papers
- The Hygiene Challenges of Workers on the Move. Information Science Trends 2022: Untold Stories
- Facilitating inclusive spaces for sharing untold stories from diverse perspectives. Information Science Trends 2022: Untold Stories
- Youth Information Interaction Research in the Pandemic: Adjustments, Innovations, Implications. Wiley
- Conducting Information Science research during pandemics: Experience and Reflections of the Information Retrieval Research Group in Sheffield. Information Science Trends - ASIS&T European Chapter Series, 9 June 2021 - 11 June 2021. View this article in WRRO
- Complex search task: How to make a phone safe for a child. CEUR Workshop Proceedings, Vol. 1798 (pp 34-36)
- Primary school children's single topic search over multiple search sessions. Proceedings of the 5th Information Interaction in Context Symposium on - IIiX '14, 26 August 2014 - 30 August 2014.
- Shefleld submission to the CHiC interactive task: Exploring digital cultural heritage. CEUR Workshop Proceedings, Vol. 1179
- Search or browse? Casual information access to a cultural heritage collection. CEUR Workshop Proceedings, Vol. 1033 (pp 19-22)
- Global Perspectives on Inclusive Curricula: Places, Practices, and Pedagogy. 2023 ASIS&T Annual Meeting
- Research group
I am a member of the Information Retrieval research group.
Current PhD students
Embedding Equality, Diversity and Inclusion in Usability Testing
Research England QR-Policy Support Funding
1 Jan 2022
Hand hygiene for mobile workers: developing and disseminating evidence-based policy to support covid recovery
Research England Covid Recovery Fund and Research England QR-Policy Support Funding
1 Jan 2022
Workplace smart sanitiser guidance: dissemination and impact
ESRC HEIF / IAA
19 Jul 2021
Smart sanitisation: Development and evaluation of a smart hand sanitiser system for use in the office environment
1 Dec 2020
Awarded £109,060 from Innovate UK as part of a £570,562 funded project in collaboration with Savortex (SME) and University of Leeds. The project is to develop and evaluate a smart (IoT) hand sanitiser system for use in the office environment.
- Teaching activities
I am a Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy. I teach information retrieval (INF6060), public and youth library services (INF6031 / 6531), HCI (INF6430) and dissertation research methods (INF6340, INF6000).
- Professional activities and memberships
Membership of professional bodies
- Senior Fellow of the HEA
Committee and advisory group membership
- Chair (2022-2023) / Past Chair (2023-2024), ASIS&T European Chapter
- Advisory board member, 123 Germ Free
Journal and conference reviewing
- Journal of Documentation
- CHI (Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems)
- Health care
- Environmental Health Insights
- International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
- Journal of Information Management
- Library and Information Research
- Online Information Review
- Pakistan Journal of Information Management & Libraries
- Rutter, S. (2021). Communicating and evaluating health messages during a pandemic. Keynote. Information Science Trends - ASIS&T European Chapter Series.
- Rutter, S. (2021). Trialling a novel evaluation method to pre-test hand hygiene messages. Cap Gemini.