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Article
Publication date: 28 February 2020

Brady D. Lund

This article presents an introduction to the Delphi method and review of Delphi studies published in the literature of library and information science (LIS).

Abstract

Purpose

This article presents an introduction to the Delphi method and review of Delphi studies published in the literature of library and information science (LIS).

Design/methodology/approach

A review of Delphi studies published between the years of 1971 and 2019 is performed, using studies retrieved from the Library and Information Science Source database. A total of 122 articles were retrieved and evaluated based on the population studied, means of identifying experts, number of participants for each study round, type of Delphi, and type of findings.

Findings

General librarians (any type), academic librarians, and information science researchers are the most common populations in LIS Delphi studies. On average (middle 50 percent of studies), 14–36 experts are used in the first round of LIS Delphi studies (median n = 23). Employment in a specific role and publications in scholarly journals are the most common means of identifying experts. Variants of the e-Delphi (online survey/email) method are increasingly common, particularly in LIS Delphi studies that focus on general information science, rather than library, topics. Though LIS Delphi studies are relatively few in number, they have a consistent record of being published in some of the most prestigious LIS journals.

Originality/value

This paper provides an introduction to the Delphi method for LIS research and presents an overview of existing literature in LIS that utilizes the research method. No overview of this extent exists in the LIS literature, and, thus, this paper may serve as an important information source about the method for LIS researchers.

Details

Journal of Documentation, vol. 76 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0022-0418

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 5 September 2019

Jhon Wilder Zartha Sossa, William Halal and Raul Hernandez Zarta

The purpose of this study is to review the literature on the Delphi method, its characteristics and current applications through an analysis of recent most-cited…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to review the literature on the Delphi method, its characteristics and current applications through an analysis of recent most-cited scientific papers, with an emphasis on three axes, namely, the number of rounds used, stakeholder participation relevance or only academic experts’ participation and the possibility of using indicators or techniques different from those related to descriptive statistics.

Design/methodology/approach

In total, 57 papers were initially reviewed, 10 of them with a high citation rate. Then, an analysis was made of papers in Scopus for the period 2015-2018 published in the Technological Forecasting and Social Change Journal and in the Futures and Foresight Journal, which had the characteristic of displaying quartile Q1 or Q2 in Scimago in addition to being in Scopus.

Findings

Among the main results, the authors observe the tendency to use fewer rounds, a higher prevalence of stakeholder participation and not only academic experts but also the use of new types of modified Delphi such as real-time spatial Delphi, Delphi group, market Delphi, real-world Delphi and policy Delphi.

Originality/value

Among the conclusions, the possibility of using other indicators or complementary techniques to the descriptive statistics is highlighted such as number of justifications or comments between rounds, coefficients to quantify the competence or degree of expertise of the participants, measures of the perception of the expert on the usefulness of the presented feedback, graphs of the number of arguments according to the number of questions, the Wilcoxon Ranked Pairs Test, the k means, Kolmogorov–Simonov test and the Mann–Whitney U-test.

Details

foresight, vol. 21 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1463-6689

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Article
Publication date: 13 June 2016

Tracy Flanagan, Russell Ashmore, David Banks and Doug MacInnes

– The purpose of this paper is to describe how the classic Delphi method can be adapted and structured to ensure that specific research questions are clearly addressed.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to describe how the classic Delphi method can be adapted and structured to ensure that specific research questions are clearly addressed.

Design/methodology/approach

As part of a larger mixed method project, a modified Delphi study was undertaken to explore factors influencing publication and non-publication of mental health nursing research.

Findings

This paper reports brief findings from the Delphi study. However, its main focus is the methodological issues arising from the Delphi method.

Research limitations/implications

The paper argues that the classic Delphi method can be adapted and structured to ensure that specific research questions are able to be clearly answered. The adaptations are pragmatic in approach and in keeping with the general principles underpinning the Delphi method, while successfully addressing the problems of attrition and previous criticism of homogenous panels.

Originality/value

This paper offers some practical solutions to issue arising from undertaking research using the Delphi method.

Details

Mental Health Review Journal, vol. 21 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1361-9322

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Article
Publication date: 1 December 2002

Robert Loo

The Delphi method can be a powerful tool to help police organizations forecast the future for the purposes of strategic management, and policy and program development…

Abstract

The Delphi method can be a powerful tool to help police organizations forecast the future for the purposes of strategic management, and policy and program development among other potential applications for police management. The paper describes the characteristics of the method, including criticisms of the method, and steps in conducting a Delphi study as well as pitfalls to avoid.

Details

Policing: An International Journal of Police Strategies & Management, vol. 25 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1363-951X

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Article
Publication date: 1 June 2004

Philip C. Howze and Connie Dalrymple

Encourages the use of Delphi for librarians in search of a research methodology. Describes one of many applications of the method, as an example of how the method can be…

Abstract

Encourages the use of Delphi for librarians in search of a research methodology. Describes one of many applications of the method, as an example of how the method can be employed in a library‐related problem solving process. The Delphi method is an effective means of consensus building, without all the meetings. Includes a description of one such consensus building process, used at an academic library a number of years ago, to determine standardized course content for a formal course in library instruction, a component of the university's general education initiative. A 134‐item checklist of learning objectives was distributed to participants, with the aim of refining the list based on an environmental scan of faculty librarians as experts. High consensus learning objectives were included in the manual, and low consensus objectives were not used. Discusses the viability of applying the Delphi technique to library science and librarianship.

Details

Reference Services Review, vol. 32 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0090-7324

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Article
Publication date: 4 September 2007

Tim Hatcher and Sharon Colton

The purpose of this article is to highlight the results of the online Delphi research project; in particular the procedures used to establish an online and innovative…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this article is to highlight the results of the online Delphi research project; in particular the procedures used to establish an online and innovative process of content validation and obtaining “rich” and descriptive information using the internet and current e‐learning technologies. The online Delphi was proven to be an excellent tool in establishing content validity for an HRD‐related construct, e.g. adult learning principles. A review of related literature revealed no existing research that used a web‐based Delphi technique to validate measurements used in training and development (T&D) or HRD.

Design/methodology/approach

Research methods included: a thorough review of the literature to construct an item pool of adult learning principles and instructional methods, and a Delphi expert panel consensus. The mean, mode, standard deviation, interquartile range, and skewness of the data were calculated from the voting procedures for determination of consensus. Evidence of reliability was indicated by the interrater reliability coefficient from a field test. In addition, the Gunning FOG Index for readability was calculated to improve the readability of the instrument.

Findings

To address the first research question the authors suggest that a valid instrument can be developed by a diverse Delphi expert panel that measures the application of adult learning principles to fully‐mediated world wide web‐based training. The second research question was answered by illustrating that the internet can assist a group of diverse and geographically dispersed subject‐matter experts in establishing a content valid measurement of instructional methods and techniques that demonstrate the application of adult learning principles to fully‐mediated web‐based training. And, finally, the paper concludes that a Delphi process can be established as a web‐based method to validate research measures.

Practical implications

This research helps to address the critical issue of how research is used in practice. Reasons why this research lends itself more to practice than other HRD research using more common qualitative or quantitative methods include: it is a relatively simple procedure requiring less than expert‐level skills; the Delphi uses expert opinion that is commonly used in training and development practice; and results are easy to interpret and practical.

Originality/value

This research is unique in its approach to developing a content valid instrument using state‐of‐the‐art technology coupled with a updated Delphi method. It is valuable to HRD and other professionals and researchers interested in developing valid measures across cultures and where experts are geographically dispersed.

Details

Journal of European Industrial Training, vol. 31 no. 7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0309-0590

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 14 November 2016

Abayomi O. Ibiyemi, Yasmin Mohd Adnan and Md Nasir Daud

The study aims to build up knowledge for collateral exploration of the classical Delphi survey method for assessing the industrial sustainability-related correction factor…

Abstract

Purpose

The study aims to build up knowledge for collateral exploration of the classical Delphi survey method for assessing the industrial sustainability-related correction factor using a real field study in Nigeria.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper elicits the character and the operational approaches using an example study to provide a critical review of the method. It estimates the correction factor for appraisal purposes by transforming expert opinion into a valid group consensus.

Findings

The work considers the specific parameters of the method, design and analysis for interpretation to prove the reliability and the validity for the research results. Moreover, it emphasises that the validity of the traditional Delphi research demands cautious theoretical and practical applications by the coordinating researcher. The paper establishes the current validity and effectiveness of the classical Delphi method of foresight and streamlines their efficient implementation for theory building despite its numerous weaknesses.

Originality/value

It explores desirable futures for the method while analysing what is possible and probable.

Details

foresight, vol. 18 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1463-6689

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Article
Publication date: 4 April 2016

Tsung-Han Yang, Cheng-Yuan Ku and Man-Nung Liu

In recent years, many development projects of the medical systems encounter difficulties and eventually fail. Failure is often due to very complicated and changeable…

Abstract

Purpose

In recent years, many development projects of the medical systems encounter difficulties and eventually fail. Failure is often due to very complicated and changeable medical procedures and the inconsistent understanding between system stakeholders, especially the healthcare providers, and information technology staff. Many research results also indicate that poor communication easily results in negative consequences during the implementation of the medical information system. To effectively overcome this obstacle, the purpose of this paper is to propose an enhanced Delphi method to assist in reaching consensus during the software development with some additional steps.

Design/methodology/approach

As an alternative to the traditional way to elicit pertinent feedback from respondents, the enhanced Delphi method stresses the systematic, flexible, and cyclic stages to construct a questionnaire with viewpoints from different types of panelists and a self-assessment procedure as a validating step to measure the improvements in the system implementation.

Findings

The better communication between the members of project team does increase the comprehensive assessment of a project.

Originality/value

Based on a practical case, the enhanced Delphi method really demonstrates good performance and effectiveness.

Details

Kybernetes, vol. 45 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0368-492X

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 13 April 2012

Kimmo Laakso, Anita Rubin and Hannu Linturi

Mobile communication has grown beyond its original scope and scale, and mobile operators have played a significant role in this phenomenon. Since the mobile operator

Abstract

Purpose

Mobile communication has grown beyond its original scope and scale, and mobile operators have played a significant role in this phenomenon. Since the mobile operator business is highly regulated, the authors aim to analyze the effects of regulation on the industry during the period 1985‐2009. They also aim to consider its potential effects in the years 2010‐2015.

Design/methodology/approach

The method selected for this research was the Delphi method. The challenge was that this method was originally created to assess experts' opinions about the course of development of a certain technology or phenomenon in the future, and then by using for example a scenario technique, to draw conclusions about its possible futures. Here the authors used the Delphi method for estimating past development also, i.e. experts' opinions of the causes and effects of laws and other regulations in the past few decades.

Findings

According to this research the ultimate goals of the regulator, set as early as in the middle of the 1980s, have been actualized: in Finland there are several competing nationwide mobile operators and the use of mobile phones is cheap compared to many other countries. One significant finding of this study is that the regulatory framework for the mobile operator business has become more complex over the years and that this complexity is also likely to grow in the future.

Practical implications

Dynamic regulation has enabled strong competition in Finland's mobile operator market and at the same time a very high service level for subscribers. The Delphi method is proven to be a powerful tool also when examining past events, and the authors recommend Delphi for use in studies related to other sectors of administration and fields of business.

Originality/value

This paper enables better monitoring of the changes in regulatory framework over a long period in which several changes have been made, compared to previous studies which focus on a single regulatory action.

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Article
Publication date: 26 August 2014

Anthony Afful-Dadzie, Eric Afful-Dadzie, Stephen Nabareseh and Zuzana Komínková Oplatková

The purpose of this paper is to propose a new assessment methodology for the African Peer Review Mechanism (APRM) using fuzzy comprehensive evaluation method (FCEM) and…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to propose a new assessment methodology for the African Peer Review Mechanism (APRM) using fuzzy comprehensive evaluation method (FCEM) and the Delphi technique. The proposed approach by its design simplifies the review processes and also quantifies the outcome of the assessment result for easier interpretation and benchmarking among member countries. The proposed hybrid method demonstrates how the subjective APRM thematic areas and their objectives can be efficiently tracked country by country while addressing the key identified challenges.

Design/methodology/approach

Using a numerical example, a demonstration of how the APRM assessment could be carried is shown using the FCEM and the Delphi method. The APRM's own thematic areas are used as the evaluation factors and the weights are assigned using Delphi technique. A novel remark set is constructed to linguistically describe the performance of a country against each or all of the thematic areas. Then in line with the maximum membership degree principle, the position of the maximum number would correspond to its respective remark element to indicate the level of performance.

Findings

The result shows a hybrid method of FCEM and Delphi used to determine whether a member country has “achieved”, “on track”, “very likely to be achieved”, “possible if some changes are made” or “off-track” on the four focus areas of the APRM. The method provides a well-organized way of tracking progress of member countries. It is also an ideal method of tracking progress of individual thematic areas and objectives. Moreover, the simplicity of the proposed method, the preciseness of the final result it generates and the clear interpretation of the result makes it a stronger alternative to the current approach for assessing member countries.

Practical implications

The APRM is a respected body with the backing of the heads of state in Africa. As most African countries become conscious of the pressure to meet international standards as far as governance performance is concerned, this proposed assessment methodology if adopted would go a long way in improving performance evaluation on the continent.

Originality/value

The proposed methodology is unique in its simplicity and its ability to evaluate any of the APRM thematic areas independent of the others. This means an overall performance can be tracked as well as that of individual evaluation factors.

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