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Interactive Service and Professional Culture: Academic Reference Librarians in an Emerging Context

Advances in Library Administration and Organization

ISBN: 978-0-7623-1410-2, eISBN: 978-1-84950-483-6

ISSN: 0732-0671

Publication date: 1 January 2006

Abstract

This study uses a microanalysis of interaction approach to study how interactive service workers collaborate with one another in conversations to construct their professional identity in the face of the rapid contextual change. The data consist of (1) a complex written exchange downloaded from an Internet listserv and (2) a mechanically recorded conversation and detailed transcript showing the exact sequence of turns in the conversation, overlapping utterances, laughter, and speech errors. Everyday descriptions in these conversations reveal how knowledge workers produce and reproduce professional identity and a shared culture in the ways they: (1) categorize themselves and other workers, (2) amend or collaborate on each other's characterizations of clients, and (3) negotiate local policies and rules as they intersect with professional values and emotional boundaries. The results demonstrate a need for opportunities to integrate the increasing complexity of interactive service into professional identity as a response to technological and social change.

Citation

Dempsey, P.R. (2006), "Interactive Service and Professional Culture: Academic Reference Librarians in an Emerging Context", Garten, E.D., Williams, D.E. and Nyce, J.M. (Ed.) Advances in Library Administration and Organization (Advances in Library Administration and Organization, Vol. 24), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Bingley, pp. 91-116. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0732-0671(06)24003-3

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2006, Emerald Group Publishing Limited