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Article
Publication date: 4 January 2013

John van de Pas

The aim of this paper is to define a framework for public information services in the twenty‐first century, as a means to address some arguments that are put forward in…

Abstract

Purpose

The aim of this paper is to define a framework for public information services in the twenty‐first century, as a means to address some arguments that are put forward in the debate on the obsoleteness of public information services in the age of the internet.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper discusses theoretical concepts on the function of information in modern democracy, followed by analysis of two foremost models of seeking knowledge, “the wisdom of crowds” and “expertise”, the different kinds of questions both forms apply to, the kind of knowledge the different models result in, and the application of the findings from that analysis in the information services environment.

Findings

The function of information in a modern democracy still applies today. Information is a means to allow citizens to make informed decisions in the democratic process. The debate on the proper way to provide functional information services in modern democracy is roughly divided between two “schools of thought”. One of them puts the model of “the wisdom of crowds” forward, and sees information technology as the final answer to all questions. The other relies on expertise, which is paramount in classic information services. The conclusion of this paper is that, where not all (research) questions yield to knowledge derived from the wisdom of crowds, there is a true need for information services that specialize in providing information produced by experts. As no other party provides that, public information services should commit themselves to playing a central role in society in providing expert information.

Originality/value

The main value of the paper is comprehensive analysis of the widespread claim that free information on the internet is the end to all means, providing all knowledge at the fingertips. It provides arguments to put forward in debates on the value of public information services.

Details

New Library World, vol. 114 no. 1/2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0307-4803

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 6 May 2014

John van de Pas

The purpose of this paper is to provide a signpost to the librarian that might be helpful in making strategic assessments for the future of the public library, and helping…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to provide a signpost to the librarian that might be helpful in making strategic assessments for the future of the public library, and helping in the process of decision-making about the course to be followed. Thereby critical remarks about the Internet-based “virtual library lobby” are summed up as arguments against following that path blindly, and alternatives to a technology-centred approach are put forward by focusing on the cultural uses of the library as a public place.

Design/methodology/approach

In this article a viewpoint is developed, based on an exploration of selected literature on the function of the library as an institution in society, and different viewpoints that are put forward in the debate on the future of libraries in the Internet era are analyzed. Some contend that going virtual is the only feasible course to take. Others emphasize that many functions of the library are unquantifiable because of their cultural nature, and rooted in physical interaction of citizens with a real space of bricks, mortar and books. These functions may never be fully virtualized, but are deemed essential to the community in which the library institution is rooted, and even society at large.

Findings

If librarians choose the technological path of the virtual library, they are rapidly being made obsolete by the multinational commercial information aggregators, where free access to information is no longer provided. If the library takes the cultural path, defining its future as an institution instrumental to “the commons” providing freedom to citizens, the actual use citizens make of library as public places should be taken as central starting point for a feasible future, and technology should be used as a means to that end.

Research limitations/implications

The article is a viewpoint, based on a limited selection of literature.

Practical implications

The viewpoint offers a critical assessment relevant to those librarians responsible for creating a roadmap for the future of their public library.

Social implications

This study underpins the importance of the public library as one of the last true public areas, open to all for the benefit of the community.

Originality/value

This study offers a different point of view, possibly even a warning call, against embracing technological determinism that brings with it enclosure of The Commons, which the Public Library in its true meaning should offer. Internet-based services are often put forward (and welcomed by many) as the solution for the future for free access to information. In the article, the case is made that unfettered free access for information to citizens is at odds with actual developments on the Internet, that according to leading Internet critics is rapidly being turned into a commercial advertising platform or market place.

Details

New Library World, vol. 115 no. 5/6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0307-4803

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Article
Publication date: 1 June 1999

George K. Chacko

Gives an in depth view of the strategies pursued by the world’s leading chief executive officers in an attempt to provide guidance to new chief executives of today…

Abstract

Gives an in depth view of the strategies pursued by the world’s leading chief executive officers in an attempt to provide guidance to new chief executives of today. Considers the marketing strategies employed, together with the organizational structures used and looks at the universal concepts that can be applied to any product. Uses anecdotal evidence to formulate a number of theories which can be used to compare your company with the best in the world. Presents initial survival strategies and then looks at ways companies can broaden their boundaries through manipulation and choice. Covers a huge variety of case studies and examples together with a substantial question and answer section.

Details

Asia Pacific Journal of Marketing and Logistics, vol. 11 no. 2/3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1355-5855

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 11 January 2008

Elena Corradini

The purpose of this paper is to provide a flavour of the content of International Round Table at the Conference on Competencies and Curriculum for IL held in Milan, Italy…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to provide a flavour of the content of International Round Table at the Conference on Competencies and Curriculum for IL held in Milan, Italy in March 2007.

Design/methodology/approach

A description of the issues, content and speakers of the Round Table is presented in this report.

Findings

Various international perspectives were reported at this round table, covering the themes of IL courses, the curriculum, professional competencies, learning by doing, and who is the right teacher for IL, which ended with a lively discussion and thoughts for the future.

Originality/value

This paper provides a conference report of value to library and information professionals on the role of libraries for education, IL, learning styles, and the new challenges for information professionals working in the learning society.

Details

New Library World, vol. 109 no. 1/2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0307-4803

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 1 June 2005

Li‐teh Sun

Man has been seeking an ideal existence for a very long time. In this existence, justice, love, and peace are no longer words, but actual experiences. How ever, with the…

Abstract

Man has been seeking an ideal existence for a very long time. In this existence, justice, love, and peace are no longer words, but actual experiences. How ever, with the American preemptive invasion and occupation of Afghanistan and Iraq and the subsequent prisoner abuse, such an existence seems to be farther and farther away from reality. The purpose of this work is to stop this dangerous trend by promoting justice, love, and peace through a change of the paradigm that is inconsistent with justice, love, and peace. The strong paradigm that created the strong nation like the U.S. and the strong man like George W. Bush have been the culprit, rather than the contributor, of the above three universal ideals. Thus, rather than justice, love, and peace, the strong paradigm resulted in in justice, hatred, and violence. In order to remove these three and related evils, what the world needs in the beginning of the third millenium is the weak paradigm. Through the acceptance of the latter paradigm, the golden mean or middle paradigm can be formulated, which is a synergy of the weak and the strong paradigm. In order to understand properly the meaning of these paradigms, however, some digression appears necessary.

Details

International Journal of Sociology and Social Policy, vol. 25 no. 6/7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0144-333X

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 1 April 2005

Li‐teh Sun

Man has been seeking an ideal existence for a very long time. In this existence, justice, love, and peace are no longer words, but actual experiences. How ever, with the…

Abstract

Man has been seeking an ideal existence for a very long time. In this existence, justice, love, and peace are no longer words, but actual experiences. How ever, with the American preemptive invasion and occupation of Afghanistan and Iraq and the subsequent prisoner abuse, such an existence seems to be farther and farther away from reality. The purpose of this work is to stop this dangerous trend by promoting justice, love, and peace through a change of the paradigm that is inconsistent with justice, love, and peace. The strong paradigm that created the strong nation like the U.S. and the strong man like George W. Bush have been the culprit, rather than the contributor, of the above three universal ideals. Thus, rather than justice, love, and peace, the strong paradigm resulted in in justice, hatred, and violence. In order to remove these three and related evils, what the world needs in the beginning of the third millenium is the weak paradigm. Through the acceptance of the latter paradigm, the golden mean or middle paradigm can be formulated, which is a synergy of the weak and the strong paradigm. In order to understand properly the meaning of these paradigms, however, some digression appears necessary.

Details

International Journal of Sociology and Social Policy, vol. 25 no. 4/5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0144-333X

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 1 March 1992

John Conway O'Brien

A collection of essays by a social economist seeking to balanceeconomics as a science of means with the values deemed necessary toman′s finding the good life and society…

Abstract

A collection of essays by a social economist seeking to balance economics as a science of means with the values deemed necessary to man′s finding the good life and society enduring as a civilized instrumentality. Looks for authority to great men of the past and to today′s moral philosopher: man is an ethical animal. The 13 essays are: 1. Evolutionary Economics: The End of It All? which challenges the view that Darwinism destroyed belief in a universe of purpose and design; 2. Schmoller′s Political Economy: Its Psychic, Moral and Legal Foundations, which centres on the belief that time‐honoured ethical values prevail in an economy formed by ties of common sentiment, ideas, customs and laws; 3. Adam Smith by Gustav von Schmoller – Schmoller rejects Smith′s natural law and sees him as simply spreading the message of Calvinism; 4. Pierre‐Joseph Proudhon, Socialist – Karl Marx, Communist: A Comparison; 5. Marxism and the Instauration of Man, which raises the question for Marx: is the flowering of the new man in Communist society the ultimate end to the dialectical movement of history?; 6. Ethical Progress and Economic Growth in Western Civilization; 7. Ethical Principles in American Society: An Appraisal; 8. The Ugent Need for a Consensus on Moral Values, which focuses on the real dangers inherent in there being no consensus on moral values; 9. Human Resources and the Good Society – man is not to be treated as an economic resource; man′s moral and material wellbeing is the goal; 10. The Social Economist on the Modern Dilemma: Ethical Dwarfs and Nuclear Giants, which argues that it is imperative to distinguish good from evil and to act accordingly: existentialism, situation ethics and evolutionary ethics savour of nihilism; 11. Ethical Principles: The Economist′s Quandary, which is the difficulty of balancing the claims of disinterested science and of the urge to better the human condition; 12. The Role of Government in the Advancement of Cultural Values, which discusses censorship and the funding of art against the background of the US Helms Amendment; 13. Man at the Crossroads draws earlier themes together; the author makes the case for rejecting determinism and the “operant conditioning” of the Skinner school in favour of the moral progress of autonomous man through adherence to traditional ethical values.

Details

International Journal of Social Economics, vol. 19 no. 3/4/5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0306-8293

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 1 May 1998

Brian H. Kleiner

Presents a special issue, enlisting the help of the author’s students and colleagues, focusing on age, sex, colour and disability discrimination in America. Breaks the…

Abstract

Presents a special issue, enlisting the help of the author’s students and colleagues, focusing on age, sex, colour and disability discrimination in America. Breaks the evidence down into manageable chunks, covering: age discrimination in the workplace; discrimination against African‐Americans; sex discrimination in the workplace; same sex sexual harassment; how to investigate and prove disability discrimination; sexual harassment in the military; when the main US job‐discrimination law applies to small companies; how to investigate and prove racial discrimination; developments concerning race discrimination in the workplace; developments concerning the Equal Pay Act; developments concerning discrimination against workers with HIV or AIDS; developments concerning discrimination based on refusal of family care leave; developments concerning discrimination against gay or lesbian employees; developments concerning discrimination based on colour; how to investigate and prove discrimination concerning based on colour; developments concerning the Equal Pay Act; using statistics in employment discrimination cases; race discrimination in the workplace; developments concerning gender discrimination in the workplace; discrimination in Japanese organizations in America; discrimination in the entertainment industry; discrimination in the utility industry; understanding and effectively managing national origin discrimination; how to investigate and prove hiring discrimination based on colour; and, finally, how to investigate sexual harassment in the workplace.

Details

Equal Opportunities International, vol. 17 no. 3/4/5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0261-0159

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Article
Publication date: 1 February 1999

Brian H. Kleiner

Devotes the entire journal issue to managing human behaviour in US industries, with examples drawn from the airline industry, trading industry, publishing industry, metal…

Abstract

Devotes the entire journal issue to managing human behaviour in US industries, with examples drawn from the airline industry, trading industry, publishing industry, metal products industry, motor vehicle and parts industry, information technology industry, food industry, the airline industry in a turbulent environment, the automotive sales industry, and specialist retailing industry. Outlines the main features of each industry and the environment in which it is operating. Provides examples, insights and quotes from Chief Executive Officers, managers and employees on their organization’s recipe for success. Mentions the effect technology has had in some industries. Talks about skilled and semi‐skilled workers, worker empowerment and the formation of teams. Addresses also the issue of change and the training that is required to deal with it in different industry sectors. Discusses remuneration packages and incentives offered to motivate employees. Notes the importance of customers in the face of increased competition. Extracts from each industry sector the various human resource practices that companies employ to manage their employees effectively ‐ revealing that there is a wide diversity in approach and what is right for one industry sector would not work in another. Offers some advice for managers, but, overall, fails to summarize what constitutes effective means of managing human behaviour.

Details

Management Research News, vol. 22 no. 2/3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0140-9174

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 1 February 2000

Yaw A. Debrah and Ian G. Smith

Presents over sixty abstracts summarising the 1999 Employment Research Unit annual conference held at the University of Cardiff. Explores the multiple impacts of…

Abstract

Presents over sixty abstracts summarising the 1999 Employment Research Unit annual conference held at the University of Cardiff. Explores the multiple impacts of globalization on work and employment in contemporary organizations. Covers the human resource management implications of organizational responses to globalization. Examines the theoretical, methodological, empirical and comparative issues pertaining to competitiveness and the management of human resources, the impact of organisational strategies and international production on the workplace, the organization of labour markets, human resource development, cultural change in organisations, trade union responses, and trans‐national corporations. Cites many case studies showing how globalization has brought a lot of opportunities together with much change both to the employee and the employer. Considers the threats to existing cultures, structures and systems.

Details

Management Research News, vol. 23 no. 2/3/4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0140-9174

Keywords

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