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Completed Papers 4: Information Seeking and Retrieval
Time: 23/Mar/2017: 10:30am-12:00pm · Location: Yangtze
Re-intermediation in the Fashion Industry: A Qualitative Study on Brokers in the Dongdae-mun Fashion District
Seoul National University, Korea, Republic of (South Korea)
This study investigates the change of intermediaries’ roles in the presence of infomediaries, and the conditions that necessitate the re-introduction of the middlemen as “re-intermediaries”. We observed a group of brokers who work in the Dongdae-mun fashion district in Seoul, Korea through multi-angled observations including observations, contextual inquiries, and in-depth interviews. Our findings show that while an infomediary provides the fashion ecosystem a new way for information access, the reliability and depth of information relayed by human sources, along with the subjective nature of fashion and style have contributed to the brokers playing a major role in the fashion district. The DDM fashion district relies heavily on the brokers’ evaluations on trends and fashion in addition to their traditional role of distributing goods in a quick manner. The findings from this study can be applied to a wider range of occupations where humans and technology are competing.
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