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An investigation and analysis of the application of Web 2.0 in Chinese university libraries

Li Si (School of Information Management, Wuhan University, Wuhan, P.R. China)
Ruoyao Shi (School of Information Management, Wuhan University, Wuhan, P.R. China)
Bijuan Chen (School of Information Management, Wuhan University, Wuhan, P.R. China)

The Electronic Library

ISSN: 0264-0473

Article publication date: 4 October 2011

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to provide an overall picture of the application of Web 2.0 technologies in Chinese university libraries. The focus of the research is what types of Web 2.0 technologies were applied in such libraries as well as their function and user interface.

Design/methodology/approach

The top 30 Chinese university libraries were selected to investigate the application of Web 2.0 technologies. Content analysis was used in terms of quantitative approach. Data were collected by accessing these 30 university libraries web sites within five weeks.

Findings

Two‐thirds of Chinese university libraries deployed one or more Web 2.0 technologies. Only one‐tenth of libraries adopted more than four Web 2.0 technologies. RSS was the most widely applied, while Wiki was the least. The application of Web 2.0 technologies among Chinese university libraries was not extensive and profound enough.

Research implications

The findings can be utilized to evaluate the status of Web 2.0 technology applications. The statistical data are very useful and authentic sources for improving the level of Web 2.0 technology application. It may enable future research to analyze other aspects (e.g. the application of RSS or Blogs for services).

Originality/value

This unique study explores the application of Web 2.0 mainly in Chinese university libraries that deployed any types of Web 2.0 technologies. This study is very useful for Chinese university libraries in evaluating/deploying Web 2.0. Library managers, librarians, and other libraries may also find this helpful, once they decide to implement such technologies in their libraries.

Keywords

Citation

Si, L., Shi, R. and Chen, B. (2011), "An investigation and analysis of the application of Web 2.0 in Chinese university libraries", The Electronic Library, Vol. 29 No. 5, pp. 651-668. https://doi.org/10.1108/02640471111177080

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2011, Emerald Group Publishing Limited