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Article
Publication date: 22 March 2013

Judith Mavodza

The purpose of this paper is to discuss issues involved in navigating the modern information environment where the relevance of cloud computing is unavoidable. This is a…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to discuss issues involved in navigating the modern information environment where the relevance of cloud computing is unavoidable. This is a way of shifting from the hardware and software demands of storing and organizing data, to information access concerns. That is because with the exponential growth in information sources and all accompanying complexities, the limited capacity of libraries to host their own in its entirety necessitates opting for alternatives in the cloud.

Design/methodology/approach

A review of current literature about the topic was performed

Findings

Literature used reveals that currently, libraries are using the cloud for putting together user resources, i.e. using Software as a Service (SaaS), such as in library catalogues, WorldCat, Googledocs, and the aggregated subject gateways like SUMMON, and others; the web Platform as a Service (PaaS) as in the use of GoogleApp Engine; or Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) as in the use of D‐Space, FEDORA, and others. The cloud is confirmed as a facilitator in storing and accessing information in addition to providing a unified web presence with reduced local storage capacity challenges.

Originality/value

The value of these findings is to remind librarians of the shift in focus towards which devices provide the easiest access to data and applications. This is one of the reasons they in many instances are currently having to address issues relating to the use of electronic media tools such as smartphones, iPad, e‐book readers, and other handheld devices. The largely borderless information resources also bring to the forefront considerations about digital rights management, fair use, information security, ownership and control of data, privacy, scholarly publishing, copyright guidance, and licensing that the librarian has to be knowledgeable about. It has become necessary for librarians who make use of commercial cloud services to be conversant with the implications on institutional data. To avert the ever present dangers and risks involving cyber‐security, it is usually practical for institutions to keep policies, procedures, fiscal, and personnel data in private clouds that have carefully crafted access permissions. Being aware of these implications enables thoughtful, adaptive planning strategies for the future of library practice and service.

Details

New Library World, vol. 114 no. 3/4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0307-4803

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Article
Publication date: 10 May 2013

Judith Mavodza

This paper seeks to highlight the recent open access (OA) initiatives in the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

Abstract

Purpose

This paper seeks to highlight the recent open access (OA) initiatives in the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

Design/methodology/approach

The paper finds that the UAE open access initiatives may be the beginning of advances towards encouraging contributing to OA peer‐reviewed article publication for enabling knowledge creation. The OA initiative appears to be a harbinger of things to come particularly at UAE institutions of higher learning where most of the academic research happens. For librarians, the time has come to be involved with the creation of institutional repositories as their roles evolve.

Findings

The research is based on literature rather than a field study. This means an actual survey may be more informative in the future.

Research limitations/implications

It is important for librarians and the academic community to understand what OA means in order to both contribute and benefit from it.

Practical implications

OA as a concept implies giving the responsibility to librarians to give more advice to patrons about effective use of OA resources.

Originality/value

This paper reinforces many of the concepts being discussed regarding OA initiatives both in the UAE and globally.

Details

New Library World, vol. 114 no. 5/6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0307-4803

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Article
Publication date: 4 October 2011

Judith Mavodza

This paper aims to examine the increased lack of clarity about the professional role of academic librarians, and where the future lies in the academic environment during…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to examine the increased lack of clarity about the professional role of academic librarians, and where the future lies in the academic environment during this period of fast information environment change.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper takes the form of a literature review and commentary on developments in the area of academic librarianship in a new information environment.

Findings

The profession is finding ways to become equipped and incorporate new technologies into the existing framework of high‐quality information service delivery. As the demands and wishes of end users transform, librarians have sought to re‐define what the library building and services mean to those who use the library. Because the nature of the content librarians work with is dramatically re‐structuring, so the profession is experimenting with new ideas for its capture, organization and delivery.

Practical implications

It is important for academic librarians to work towards the transformation of their relationship with faculty to emphasize an ability to assist them with integrating information technology and library resources into courses. This is based on collaboration and networking.

Originality/value

The paper reveals that change is happening in a new, increasingly competitive information environment in which the academic library is no longer necessarily the conventional resource of first choice for the academe it exists to serve.

Details

New Library World, vol. 112 no. 9/10
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0307-4803

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Article
Publication date: 15 November 2011

Judith Mavodza

This paper seeks to comment on the information seeking behaviour of Metropolitan College of New York (MCNY) library users.

Abstract

Purpose

This paper seeks to comment on the information seeking behaviour of Metropolitan College of New York (MCNY) library users.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper is based on studying database usage patterns from January 2007 to December 2010, as well as a literature review.

Findings

The results of the study suggest the position that database usage statistics can give insight into information behaviour and help inform collection management decisions, but on their own are not sufficient to give the complete picture.

Practical implications

The outcomes may be useful in the design of library instruction sessions in future student groups in the College as well as in postsecondary settings, in addition to informing collection management decisions.

Originality/value

A study of library database use patterns by library users brought out relevant information relating to the tailoring and enhancement of library service.

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Article
Publication date: 1 February 2016

Mathew Moyo and Judith Mavodza

The purpose of this paper is to establish and compare the provision of information literacy (IL) skills to university students both at undergraduate and graduate levels in…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to establish and compare the provision of information literacy (IL) skills to university students both at undergraduate and graduate levels in South Africa (SA) and the United Arab Emirates (UAE). This could in turn inform the development of appropriate/suitable IL programmes to support teaching and learning.

Design/methodology/approach

A review of available scholarly papers is performed for information collection.

Findings

The findings can identify variations in IL provision within and across disciplines, deficiencies in local current and ongoing research.

Research limitations/implications

It must be noted that this is a review and conclusions from it are expected to reveal areas that require more in-depth study.

Practical implications

The study’s contribution to the field of IL lies in its revelation of what is understood by IL provision and how the ACRL standards are used to guide practice in the two different regions of the world.

Originality/value

The study is the first of its kind which compares IL practices at university libraries in SA and the UAE. It will assist policymakers and librarians in the development of appropriate IL programmes in support of teaching and learning.

Details

Library Review, vol. 65 no. 1/2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0024-2535

Keywords

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