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Values for librarians in the information age: an expanded examination

Wanda V. Dole (Director, Mabee Library, Washburn University, Topeka, Kansas, USA.)
Jitka M. Hurych (Professor and Head, Science, Engineering and Business Department, Northern Illinois University, Founders Memorial Library, DeKalb, Illinois, USA.)
Wallace C. Koehler (Assistant Professor, School of Library and Information Studies, The University of Oklahoma, Norman, Oklahoma, USA.)

Library Management

ISSN: 0143-5124

Article publication date: 1 August 2000

Abstract

The library profession has been concerned with ethical issues since its beginning. Ethical issues raised in the early years dealt primarily with librarians’ responsibility to the employer or patron. The focus later shifted to questions of professional identity, organisational environment, and social responsibilities. Rapid technological change and the advent of the information age are forcing the library profession to rethink its mission and responsibilities. This paper expands research on a survey of librarians’ ethical values reported by Dole and Hurych (forthcoming) at the 1998 EEI21 Symposium. In the 1998 study, they conducted a survey of North American librarians and librarians at a conference in the Crimea (Ukraine) to examine the values considered most important by each group and to identify differences in the priorities of values assigned by the groups studied. They found that all three groups held similar values. The current study replicates the 1998 survey among librarians throughout the world. Additional professional and demographic data were collected during the second iteration to support consideration of professional training, library experience and type, and professional responsibilities as possible factors contributing to value formation.

Keywords

Citation

Dole, W.V., Hurych, J.M. and Koehler, W.C. (2000), "Values for librarians in the information age: an expanded examination", Library Management, Vol. 21 No. 6, pp. 285-297. https://doi.org/10.1108/01435120010327597

Publisher

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MCB UP Ltd

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