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Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Copyright © 2013, Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Article Type: Editorial From: Performance Measurement and Metrics, Volume 14, Issue 1.
This time we have a “semi-special” issue, with four papers selected by Stephen Town on the topic of “Value measurement and library stakeholders”, together with three of our normal papers.
Narges Neshat and Mozhdeh Dehghani have carried out a LibQUAL+ survey of user satisfaction at The National Library of Iran, using a Farsi language survey instrument. Although there have been many LibQUAL surveys carried out in the academic library environment, as far as I am aware this has to be among the first carried out about a National Library. The results are quite damning, but enable the management of the National Library to identify major shortcomings and take action to ameliorate them. Also included are basic demographic results about the user base which will also help inform their debate.
While impact assessments of library services of academic communities are almost commonplace, there has been a dearth of information about the impact of special libraries, especially those in the business environment. Tina Reynolds heads an Information Unit for one of the UK's largest property consultancies, Drivers Jonas Deloitte, and has carried out a survey of her customers to find out how they assess the impact of her unit on their ability to carry out business. The results of the survey and the gathering of comments from the customer base threw up some pleasing and some disquieting results. It was notable that while some senior partners saw no direct impact on their performance, they did see the Unit having an impact on their teams. Tina draws several conclusions, but probably the most significant is that in her particular environment the term “added value” seems to be well recognised, whereas there was uncertainty about the concept of “impact” itself. While we, within the measurement community, have several closely related definitions of what we understand impact to be, it is not necessarily a universally understood concept outside our community.
Rekha Mittal presents us with a co-citation analysis of biofuel literature. Co-citation analysis can be one of several tools used to help individuals to access and visualise scholarly communication within any field, and helps to identify the most productive and prominent authors in the field, the amount they are co-cited with other authors, and the authors who appear to work in similar subject areas. In my last job I was very keen on the use of citation and co-citation analysis together with data visualisation to present results and linkages in a clearer and more comprehensive manner, and help pinpoint future research trends, and I am pleased to see this particular paper.
Finally we have a book review by Prof Frank Huysmans.