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Article
Publication date: 11 July 2016

Keren Dali and Nadia Caidi

This paper aims to explore the attractiveness of Library and Information Science (LIS) careers to students and alumni and examine their decision-making process and…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to explore the attractiveness of Library and Information Science (LIS) careers to students and alumni and examine their decision-making process and perceptions of the field with an eye on discerning the best ways to build and develop the recruitment narrative.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors reached out to 57 LIS graduate programs in Canada and the USA accredited by the American Library Association through a Web-based survey; the questions presented a combination of multiple-choice, short-answer and open-ended questions and generated a wealth of quantitative and qualitative data.

Findings

The online survey has disclosed that students may not have an in-depth understanding of current trends, the diversity of LIS professions and the wider applications of their education. A significant disconnect exists in how the goals of LIS education are seen by certain groups of practitioners, students and faculty members.

Originality/value

Creating a program narrative for the purposes of recruitment and retention, departments should not only capitalize on the reach of the internet and the experiences of successful practitioners. They should also ensure that faculty know their students’ personal backgrounds, that students empathize with demands of contemporary academia and that a promotional message connects pragmatic educational goals to broader social applications. By exposing and embracing the complexity of LIS education and practice, the paper chooses a discursive path to start a conversation among major stakeholders.

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Article
Publication date: 1 March 2006

Nadia Caidi

The purpose of this article is to examine the changing role and image of libraries and librarians, along with the overall information culture prevalent in four Central and…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this article is to examine the changing role and image of libraries and librarians, along with the overall information culture prevalent in four Central and Eastern European (CEE) countries that were undergoing socio‐political changes. The core question investigated in this article is whether libraries as social and cultural institutions have a role to play in enabling individuals to acquire the types of skills and competencies that extend far beyond the realm of the library walls to encompass practices that translate into various spheres of individuals' lives, including their participation in political, economic and civic life.

Design/methodology/approach

Interviews were conducted in 1999 with 49 library policymakers in Poland, Hungary, the Czech Republic and the Slovak Republic (and selected follow‐up interviews were conducted in 2002), to shed light on the role of libraries in social and political reconfigurations of their nations.

Findings

The library is a ubiquitous component of the information environment of any society and plays a critical role in connecting information resources and services with users. Yet, despite their ubiquity and centrality in the production, management and dissemination of information in society, libraries have been largely neglected in many CEE countries. Libraries can play a critical role in political reconfiguration of their nation by building the types of skills and competencies that will empower individuals and thereby contribute to shaping an information culture that imeets the needs of the time.

Originality/value

The paper contributes to one's understanding of the political dimensions of the provision of information resources.

Details

Journal of Documentation, vol. 62 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0022-0418

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 9 November 2015

Nadia Caidi and Keren Dali

– This paper aims to examine the attractiveness of Library and Information Science (LIS) professions and programs to culturally and linguistically diverse individuals.

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to examine the attractiveness of Library and Information Science (LIS) professions and programs to culturally and linguistically diverse individuals.

Design/methodology/approach

Between September and December 2014, current students and alumni from 57 North American LIS programs were surveyed regarding their learning experiences and perceptions of the state of diversity in LIS.

Findings

The findings point to deep, emotive reflections on diversity in LIS. Noting the general societal turn toward values-based, integral diversity, this paper proposes looking beyond the quantitative measures and paying attention to the volume of negative emotion surrounding the diversity debate in our field. Making both philosophical and practical arguments, a three-tiered approach is advocated, which can contribute to nurturing the climate of diversity: outreach and promotion; recruitment and retention; and interpersonal and intercultural dialog that will not only sustain diversity but also transform diverse environments into healthy and vibrant places with transparent communication channels.

Originality/value

This paper departs from the focus on increasing diversity and emphasizes sustaining diversity in both academia and workplaces. The improvement of interpersonal relationships, human understanding and interpersonal communication is seen as a way to systemic change.

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Article
Publication date: 5 August 2014

Paul Gabriele Weston and Giuseppina Vullo

The purpose of this paper is to describe the quantitative and qualitative methods to assess the sustainability of cooperation models within research libraries networks in…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to describe the quantitative and qualitative methods to assess the sustainability of cooperation models within research libraries networks in the humanities.

Design/methodology/approach

Changing research environment and budget constraints currently are the main challenges of research libraries networks: to cope with this pressure libraries need to build collective capacity through a strong model of collaboration and partnership and foster closer interaction between actors both from the library and the external world. In order to build effective and efficient cooperation models research libraries networks will first need to share a common vision and a well-focused organisation. Nevertheless, a multi-level approach should help them to identify their core functional requirements, the specialised needs of their users and a flexible cooperation structure able to maintain the financial sustainability of the system.

Findings

After illustrating the current challenges in the research libraries world, and how cooperation and collaboration issues have been connoting library management and activities, this work presents the methodology and the preliminary results of a research project which surveyed the URBS network, an international consortium of 12 libraries from academic and research institutions of several nations (Austria, Denmark, Finland, Great Britain, Italy, the Netherlands, Norway, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, the USA) based in Rome, Italy.

Originality/value

This paper will be of interest and value to other research library networks or consortia with an interest in the development of new organisational models, and in the evaluation and assessment of their sustainability.

Details

Library Management, vol. 35 no. 6/7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0143-5124

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 8 May 2017

Keren Dali

The purpose of this paper is to call into question the most longstanding pedagogical practices in academia while analyzing their potential to foster student creativity and…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to call into question the most longstanding pedagogical practices in academia while analyzing their potential to foster student creativity and innovation in the classroom. While some suggestions advanced in this paper may not have the same importance in other fields and disciplines, they are highly relevant in the applied, interdisciplinary, and very fast moving field of Library and Information Science (LIS).

Design/methodology/approach

Positioning creativity as a teachable skill and relying on the learner-centered pedagogy of Carl Rogers, the paper presents a model that can serve as a litmus test for the creative potential of graduate-level assignments in LIS programs. The model is called “Walls,” “Doors,” and “Fences” (WalDorF); these terms refer to specific statements in graduate assignment descriptions that are necessary (“Walls”); conducive to creative expression (“Doors”); or unjustifiably restrictive (“Fences”). The paper uses a sample assignment from a “Foundations of LIS” course to illustrate the model; it also provides several examples of the WalDorF model application in other LIS courses.

Findings

Using the WalDorF model, the paper revisits and challenges some of the most common pedagogical practices in graduate LIS teaching, including the prevalence of written papers as course assignments; the implications of equating “research” with an overview of secondary literature; the need for professors’ approvals of research topics; the meaning of the “quality of writing;” the imperative of “academic” writing as opposed to other types of writing; the word/page limit; the use of standardized reference styles; the class participation requirement; and the late assignment policies, among others.

Originality/value

The real change in education is foundational and goes beyond cosmetic improvements. If we want to develop learning experiences that tap into students’ creative potential, the very core of our approaches needs to be scrutinized and questioned, even the centuries-old staples of academic teaching. At the end of the day, we may decide that changing things is not in the best interests of learning. However, a complete critical analytical work must be done to convince and reassure ourselves that tried-and-true methods are the best way to go. The proposed WalDorF model presents one possible frame for critical revision.

Details

Journal of Documentation, vol. 73 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0022-0418

Keywords

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