The external environment is becoming more uncertain and volatile. To be successful and retain competitiveness, organisations have to regularly detect external signals, systematically process and use such information. Environmental scanning is an effective way for organisations to adapt to their external environment by overcoming threats and grasping opportunities. However, some organisations may not be able to conduct environmental scanning due to lack of resources or adequately trained personnel. To satisfy their needs of environmental knowledge, they may have to outsource for such kind of information services, provide training for their existing staff, or hire specialised business information professional. As there is a degree of overlap between information management and environment scanning activities, some of the competencies covered by current LIS programs in Asia would be useful for undertaking environmental scanning activities. Nevertheless, information professionals still need an additional set of competencies to effectively provide this service. For example, LIS professionals would need a basic understanding of business and marketing principles to effectively understand and meet the information needs of their clients; improve their knowledge of various kinds of specialised business information sources and planning. This chapter first introduces the concept of external environment, the definition and process of environment scanning, and how environmental intelligence could be used for strategic planning and organisational learning. Then it discusses the role of environmental scanning as an emerging discipline for LIS education, covering topics as environmental scanning based information services and competencies required for conducting environmental scanning. Finally, it provides an overview of efforts have been made by LIS education programs in Asia in imparting new skills to their graduates for undertaking environmental scanning activities.
Zhang, X., Majid, S. and Foo, S. (2012), "Chapter 6 Environmental Scanning — An Emerging Discipline for LIS Education", Spink, A. and Singh, D. (Ed.) Library and Information Science Trends and Research: Asia-Oceania (Library and Information Science, Vol. 2), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Bingley, pp. 125-147. https://doi.org/10.1108/S1876-0562(2011)002011b008Download as .RIS
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