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Showing papers in "Journal of Documentation in 2015"


Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: There is a need for data literacy and it is advantageous to have a unified terminology, and data literacy can be offered both to researchers, who need to become data literate science workers and to educate data management professionals.
Abstract: Purpose – The role of data literacy is discussed in the light of such activities as data a quality, data management, data curation, and data citation. The differing terms and their relationship to the most important literacies are examined. The paper aims to discuss these issues. Design/methodology/approach – By stressing the importance of data literacy in fulfilling the mission of the contemporary academic library, the paper centres on information literacy, while the characteristics of other relevant literacies are also examined. The content of data literacy education is explained in the context of data-related activities. Findings – It can be concluded that there is a need for data literacy and it is advantageous to have a unified terminology. Data literacy can be offered both to researchers, who need to become data literate science workers and have the goal to educate data management professionals. Several lists of competencies contain important skills and abilities, many of them indicating the close r...

114 citations


Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: There is a need for a taxonomy of literacies that reflects more recent developments, one that more comprehensively captures the current literacy landscape and one that might have affordances in the future.
Abstract: Purpose – Digital technologies have transformed what it means to be literate and to experience literacy. Various literacies have been coined to capture this transformation including established literacies like computer literacy, information literacy, digital literacy, media literacy and internet literacy, to newer conceptions like transliteracy, metaliteracy and multimodal literacy. The purpose of this paper is to assimilate the various conceptions of literacy and literacy types is becoming increasingly more complex. There is a need for a taxonomy of literacies that reflects more recent developments, one that more comprehensively captures the current literacy landscape and one that might have affordances in the future. Design/methodology/approach – “Library and Information Science Abstracts” (LISA), “Education Resources Information Center” (ERIC) and “British Education Index” were searched for documents relating to digital technologies and literacy. Relevant documents were retrieved and reviewed. This was...

96 citations


Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: This work explores the varied nature of disciplinarity, which is of particular concern in a heightened assessment culture, where decisions about funding and resource allocation are often discipline-dependent (or focussed exclusively on interdisciplinary endeavors).
Abstract: Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to identify criteria for and definitions of disciplinarity, and how they differ between different types of literature. Design/methodology/approach – This synthesis is achieved through a purposive review of three types of literature: explicit conceptualizations of disciplinarity; narrative histories of disciplines; and operationalizations of disciplinarity. Findings – Each angle of discussing disciplinarity presents distinct criteria. However, there are a few common axes upon which conceptualizations, disciplinary narratives, and measurements revolve: communication, social features, topical coherence, and institutions. Originality/value – There is considerable ambiguity in the concept of a discipline. This is of particular concern in a heightened assessment culture, where decisions about funding and resource allocation are often discipline-dependent (or focussed exclusively on interdisciplinary endeavors). This work explores the varied nature of disciplinarity and, th...

91 citations


Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: IPA was an effective method for exploring experience among information professionals: it was equally suitable for studying reference and information service work for academic library professionals and burnout experience for information and communication technology workers.
Abstract: Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to provide an overview and evaluation of interpretative phenomenological analysis (IPA) for the library and information science (LIS) community, as this method has only recently been used for exploring experiences of various phenomena related to LIS. Design/methodology/approach – IPA is discussed within the phenomenological tradition. Two examples of recent IPA studies are examined in parallel to show application of the IPA method. Issues and challenges of applying IPA to LIS research questions are discussed. Findings – IPA is an alternative phenomenological method, adding to the repertoire of qualitative methods used for LIS research. It was an effective method for exploring experience among information professionals: it was equally suitable for studying reference and information service work for academic library professionals and burnout experience for information and communication technology workers. Originality/value – Only a few LIS studies have used IPA and no ...

77 citations


Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: The paper aims to discuss the issue of originality/value, which means Scholars, publishers and institutions may freely build upon, enhance and reuse the open citation data for any purpose, without restriction under copyright or database law.
Abstract: Purpose – Citation data needs to be recognised as a part of the Commons – those works that are freely and legally available for sharing – and placed in an open repository. The paper aims to discuss this issue. Design/methodology/approach – The Open Citation Corpus is a new open repository of scholarly citation data, made available under a Creative Commons CC0 1.0 public domain dedication and encoded as Open Linked Data using the SPAR Ontologies. Findings – The Open Citation Corpus presently provides open access (OA) to reference lists from 204,637 articles from the OA Subset of PubMed Central, containing 6,325,178 individual references to 3,373,961 unique papers. Originality/value – Scholars, publishers and institutions may freely build upon, enhance and reuse the open citation data for any purpose, without restriction under copyright or database law.

63 citations


Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: In this paper, a review of the literature on music information seeking and an empirical study on members of an amateur concert band are presented, along with empirical evidence from a survey on a community concert band.
Abstract: Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to examine information seeking behaviour targeted to music information seeking by amateur musicians, accompanied with empirical evidence from a survey on a community concert band. While several studies in the literature have examined information seeking in the context of hedonic motives (e.g. entertainment oriented), music information can also be used for utilitarian purposes by providing amateur musicians the necessary tools to improve their skill and become better in their practice. Design/methodology/approach – A review of the literature on music information seeking and an empirical study on members of an amateur concert band are presented. The theoretical construct of the survey is informed by Wilsons’ macro model of information seeking behaviour. This is employed in order to understand information motives and needs, as well as obstacles in information seeking of musicians. Findings – Musicians seek information not only for entertainment but for educational purpo...

55 citations


Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: As an emerging concept information resilience has the potential to focus research attention towards the critical role that information and information practices such as information literacy have in supporting people whose knowledge bases, social networks and information landscapes have become disrupted during transition.
Abstract: Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to introduce and explore the concept of information resilience. Design/methodology/approach – The concept of information resilience emerges from a qualitative study that explored the health information experience and information practices of resettling refugees. Semi-structured face-to-face interviews were employed and the data collected were analysed using an grounded theory approach. Findings – The present study describes information resilience as an outcome of information literacy practice. As an emerging concept information resilience has the potential to focus research attention towards the critical role that information and information practices such as information literacy have in supporting people whose knowledge bases, social networks and information landscapes have become disrupted during transition. Practical implications – Public libraries role in support the development of information resilience is considered. Social implications – The paper draws from a...

48 citations


Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: The purpose of this paper is to make an explicit case for the use of data with contextual information as evidence in arts and humanities research evaluations rather than systematic metrics.
Abstract: Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to make an explicit case for the use of data with contextual information as evidence in arts and humanities research evaluations rather than systematic metrics. Design/methodology/approach – A survey of the strengths and limitations of citation-based indicators is combined with evidence about existing uses of wider impact data in the arts and humanities, with particular reference to the 2014 UK Research Excellence Framework. Findings – Data are already used as impact evidence in the arts and humanities but this practice should become more widespread. Practical implications – Arts and humanities researchers should be encouraged to think creatively about the kinds of data that they may be able to generate in support of the value of their research and should not rely upon standardised metrics. Originality/value – This paper combines practices emerging in the arts and humanities with research evaluation from a scientometric perspective to generate new recommendations.

46 citations


Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: The features of Google search results pages and web sites that signal credibility (or lack thereof) to this population and the reasons behind their perceptions are identified.
Abstract: Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to focus on disadvantaged tweens’ (ages 11 through 13) strategies for making predictive and evaluative judgments of the credibility of health information online. More specifically, this paper identifies the features of Google search results pages and web sites that signal credibility (or lack thereof) to this population and the reasons behind their perceptions. Design/methodology/approach – The authors employed an ethnographic approach (using various types of data collection methods) targeted to generate in-depth descriptions of tweens making predictive and evaluative judgments of credibility, focussing on the ways in which these tweens naturally assess the credibility of online information. Findings – The research has yielded novel findings concerning the types of factors that influence disadvantaged tweens’ credibility assessment strategies, such as limited English-language vocabularies, lack of familiarity with perhaps otherwise well-known sources, and forced reli...

40 citations


Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: The structure of this process is compared with Robert Darnton’s communications circuit in order to propose a new model for the publication of Fifty Shades of Grey.
Abstract: Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to investigate the state of contemporary publishing, specifically the realms of fanfiction and self-publishing, for the ways in which readership is represented in conjunction with authors and publishers within the publication process. The structure of this process is then compared with Robert Darnton’s communications circuit in order to propose a new model for the publication. As the publication process has a profound impact on the teaching and practice of collection development and reader studies in LIS, the discipline must be aware of any changes to the publication process. Design/methodology/approach – Using the case study approach, this research examines the cultural product, Fifty Shades of Grey (FSOG). Evidence included fanfiction and self-published manuscripts, reader reception of these texts, and a timeline of how the texts developed. Findings – Evidence gathered from the case study illustrate a variety of players and infrastructure present in the development...

39 citations


Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: This paper focuses on the ways in which the affective and cognitive factors and their interplay are approached in the Information Search Process model developed by Carol Kuhlthau, and the Social-Biological Information Technology model elaborated by Diane Nahl.
Abstract: Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to elaborate the conceptual picture of the relationships between the affective and cognitive factors in information seeking and use. Design/methodology/approach – Conceptual analysis focusing on the ways in which the affective and cognitive factors and their interplay are approached in the Information Search Process model developed by Carol Kuhlthau, and the Social-Biological Information Technology model elaborated by Diane Nahl. Findings – Kuhlthau’s model approaches the cognitive factors (thoughts) and affective factors (feelings) and affective-cognitive factors (mood) as integral constituents of the six-stage information search process. Thoughts determine the valence of feelings (positive or negative), while mood opens or closes the range of possibilities in a search. Nahl’s taxonomic model defines the affective and cognitive factors as components of a biologically determined process serving the ends of adaptation to information ecology. The interplay of the above...

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: This paper provides a framework for the study of information seeking behaviour for the purposes of satisfying musical creativity information needs, combining the theoretical basis of an established model of information behaviour developed by Wilson and the theoretical perspectives of a music creative process.
Abstract: Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to investigate the connection between musicians’ information seeking behaviour and the creative process in music, providing a framework for understanding the role of information needs satisfaction in musical creativity A number of studies in information science literature have been carried out attempting to model cognitive, affective, behavioural and contextual factors associated with music information seeking behaviour However, only few studies have addressed the relationship between information seeking behaviour and musical creative activities such as composition, performance and improvisation, listening and analysis Design/methodology/approach – The focus of this paper is to provide a framework for the study of information seeking behaviour for the purposes of satisfying musical creativity information needs, combining the theoretical basis of an established model of information behaviour developed by Wilson and the theoretical perspectives of a music creative t

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: The purpose of this paper is to investigate how archivists, records managers and scholarly literature in the field(s) analyse how participation in the project is discussed in the context of archiving and retrieval.
Abstract: Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to investigate how archivists, records managers and scholarly literature in the field(s) analyse how participationnis discussed in the context of arch ...

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: The model provides practical insights into the behaviour of both users and providers of information and the factors that influence them and can be used to identify ways in which information behaviour may be positively modified in ...
Abstract: Purpose – This study investigated the application in the field of healthcare of a recently developed model of information seeking and communication. The purpose of this paper is to test the model’s validity and to identify insights that it may provide. Design/methodology/approach – To investigate the model’s application to information users, the findings from published literature on physicians’ information behaviour were studied. To investigate its application to information providers, interviews were carried out with staff working for the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence and with employees of pharmaceutical companies. The findings were examined using deductive content analysis. Findings – The findings endorse the validity of the model, with minor modifications. The model provides practical insights into the behaviour of both users and providers of information and the factors that influence them. It can be used to identify ways in which information behaviour may be positively modified in ...

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: Investigation of concepts used in depicting future visions of society, as afforded by technology, to map the extent of their use, examine the level of their dominance in different research areas and geographic boundaries, identify potential overlaps, analyse their longitudinal growth, and examine whether any of the identified concepts has assumed an overarching position.
Abstract: Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to investigate concepts that are used in depicting future visions of society, as afforded by technology, to map the extent of their use, examine the level of their dominance in different research areas and geographic boundaries, identify potential overlaps, analyse their longitudinal growth, and examine whether any of the identified concepts has assumed an overarching position. Design/methodology/approach – In total, 14 concepts, each of which is used to depict visions of future information infrastructures, were identified. More than 20,000 scholarly documents related to 11 of these concepts (those with 20 or more documents) are analysed by various qualitative/quantitative methods. Findings – The concepts most referred to are semantic web and ubiquitous computing (all years), and internet of things (Year 2013). Publications on some newer concepts (e.g. digital living, real world internet) are minimal. There are variations in the extent of use and preferred concepts b...

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: The paper finds that drawing together the constructs of heterotopia and serendipity can enrich the understanding of how libraries are experienced as sites of play, creativity, and adventure.
Abstract: Purpose – Using Michel Foucault’s notion of heterotopia as a guide, the purpose of this paper is to explore the implications of considering the library as place, and specifically as a place that has the “curious property of being in relation with all the other sites, but in such a way as to suspect, neutralize, or invent the set of relations that they happen to designate, mirror, or reflect” (Foucault, 1986a, p. 24). Design/methodology/approach – The paper draws upon a range of literary examples and from biographical accounts of authors such as Alan Bennett, Michel Foucault, and Umberto Eco to show how the library space operates as a heterotopia. Findings – The paper finds that drawing together the constructs of heterotopia and serendipity can enrich the understanding of how libraries are experienced as sites of play, creativity, and adventure. Originality/value – Foucault’s concept of heterotopia is offered as an original and useful frame that can account for the range of experiences and associations uni...

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: This paper aims to model the explicit process and the implicit factors of online information encountering, i.e. how and why it occurs, and identifies the key phases of the encountering process.
Abstract: Purpose – Information encountering is the serendipitous acquisition of information that requires low or no involvement and expectation of users. The purpose of this paper is to model the explicit process and the implicit factors of online information encountering, i.e. how and why it occurs. Design/methodology/approach – The critical incident technique was adopted to collect qualitative data from 16 interview participants. They contributed 27 true incidents of online information encountering which were used to identify the key phases of the encountering process. They also commented on the factors that they thought had an influence on the chance of the occurrence of encountering. Findings – The macro-process of information encountering is composed of three phases. First, browsing, searching, or social interaction provides the context for encountering; second, the encountering occurrence consists of three steps – noticing the stimuli, examining the content, and acquiring interesting or useful content; and t...

Journal ArticleDOI
Olle Sköld1
TL;DR: This paper is to explore how virtual world communities employ new media as a repository to record information about their past in a virtual world.
Abstract: Purpose. The purpose of this paper is to explore how virtual world communities employ new media as a repository to record information about their past.Design/methodology/approach. Using the notions ...

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: The paper shows how information trading functions in MMORPGs, and the importance of information access for play, the efficiency of real money trade and the significance of information practice -based services as a relatively regular form of payment in virtual worlds.
Abstract: Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to discuss the ways in which information acts as a commodity in massively multiplayer online role-playing games (MMORPGs), and how players pay for items and services with information practices. Design/methodology/approach – Through meta-theoretical analysis of the game environment as a set of information systems, one of retrieval and one social, the paper shows how players’ information practices influence their access to game content, organizational status and relationship to real-money trade. Findings – By showing how information trading functions in MMORPGs, the paper displays the importance of information access for play, the efficiency of real money trade and the significance of information practice -based services as a relatively regular form of payment in virtual worlds. Players furthermore shown to contribute to the information economy of the game with the way in which they decide not to share some information, so as to prevent others from a loss of game conte...

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: The notion that information and learning are inextricably linked via the concept of “informed learning” is used as a conceptual framework to gain a clearer picture of what informs ECAs while they learn and how they experience using that which informs their learning within this complex practice.
Abstract: Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to explore the informed learning experiences of early career academics (ECAs) while building their networks for professional and personal development. The notion that information and learning are inextricably linked via the concept of “informed learning” is used as a conceptual framework to gain a clearer picture of what informs ECAs while they learn and how they experience using that which informs their learning within this complex practice: to build, maintain and utilise their developmental networks. Design/methodology/approach – This research employs a qualitative framework using a constructivist grounded theory approach (Charmaz, 2006). Through semi-structured interviews with a sample of 14 ECAs from across two Australian universities, data were generated to investigate the research questions. The study used the methods of constant comparison to create codes and categories towards theme development. Further examination considered the relationship between thematic...

Journal ArticleDOI
Anna Suorsa1
TL;DR: The experiential nature of knowledge creating interaction is examined and a framework to explore it theoretically coherently with hermeneutic phenomenology and Hans-Georg Gadamer's concept of play is introduced.
Abstract: Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to examine the experiential nature of knowledge creating interaction and to introduce a framework to explore it theoretically coherently with hermeneutic phenomenology and Hans-Georg Gadamer’s concept of play. Design/methodology/approach – This paper presents a literature-based conceptual analysis of the concept of play. Gadamerian conception is related with the descriptions of knowledge creating interaction in the research of knowledge management and with the uses of the concept of play in the field of Library and Information Science (LIS). Theoretical analysis is applied in this study to structure the argumentation. Findings – This study illustrates how the preconceptions of experiences and different modes of being in interaction are implicitly present in the research of knowledge creation (KC) in the descriptions of interaction and human factors enhancing KC. A framework for examining KC in organizational circumstances is developed based on the hermeneutic phenome...

Journal ArticleDOI
Liangzhi Yu1
TL;DR: The mission of the library and information profession is to ensure maximum discoverability and accessibility of information, and that LIS is structured into two fields correspondingly, each consisting of three tiers of knowledge: philo...
Abstract: Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to redefine information and other associated library and information science (LIS) concepts and to reformulate the mission of the library and information profession and the problem of LIS using these concepts. Design/methodology/approach – This study adopts a deductive approach to conceptualization, starting from one given, a priori concept. Findings – This paper develops a constellation of concepts which offer mutual clarification for each other. Having defined data by drawing on its existing denotations, it defines “information” as the combined product of data and meaning, and “document” as the combined product of information and media; it defines “knowledge” as one type of meaning and “work” as one type of information. It shows that the mission of the library and information profession is to ensure maximum discoverability and accessibility of information, and that LIS is structured into two fields correspondingly, each consisting of three tiers of knowledge: philo...

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: A study which investigates some factors in the current state of knowledge management (KM) in Saudi Arabia and considers the relevance of the findings for KM and information sharing generally.
Abstract: Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to report a study which investigates some factors in the current state of knowledge management (KM) in Saudi Arabia, and to consider the relevance of the findings for KM and information sharing generally. Design/methodology/approach – A survey of Saudi Arabia private companies with a KM policy was carried out, and the issues raised were investigated further by literature analysis. Findings – Issues examined include the effect of demographics, the balance between human and digital resources, the relation between KM and organisational learning, the effect of the cultural context, the nature of reward for knowledge sharing, including enhancement of self-worth, and the relation between the personal and individual, and the collective and social. Research limitations/implications – The survey has a self-selected convenience sample, which is rather skewed demographically. The literature analysis is selective rather than comprehensive. Originality/value – Presents an analysi...

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: This study aims at nuancing the perception about professional documentation (a.k.a. ‘grey literature’), assuming perception of documentation being a cultural aspect of accessibility.
Abstract: PurposeThis study aims at nuancing the perception about professional documentation (a.k.a. ‘grey literature’), assuming perception of documentation being a cultural aspect of accessibility.Design/m ...

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: An explorative study was made that focussed on consumer awareness, based on the analysis of a sample of 30 discussion threads containing altogether 1,630 messages available in Canadian Content – a major online platform.
Abstract: Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to specify the role of emotions played in information seeking and sharing taking place in online discussion forum. To this end, an explorative study was made that focussed on consumer awareness. Design/methodology/approach – The study is based on the analysis of a sample of 30 discussion threads containing altogether 1,630 messages available in Canadian Content – a major online platform. The expression of emotions was examined by using the categories of the interaction process analysis (IPA) model. Two research questions were addressed: first, what kind of emotions are expressed in the four functional areas of the IPA model when discussing online about consumer awareness? and second, what is the role of positive and negative emotions in information seeking and sharing about the above topic? The data were analyzed by means of descriptive statistics and qualitative content analysis. Findings – Of the emotional expressions, 42 percent were positive and 58 percent negati...

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: It is argued that the “resources and representations” model of REST is a sustainable way for the management of web resources in a context of constant technological evolutions and can avoid the costs associated with the creation of multiple interfaces.
Abstract: Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to revisit a decade after its conception the Representational State Transfer (REST) architectural style and analyzes its relevance to address current challenges from the Library and Information Science (LIS) discipline. Design/methodology/approach – Conceptual aspects of REST are reviewed and a generic architecture to support REST is presented. The relevance of the architecture is demonstrated with the help of a case study based on the collection registration database of the Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum. Findings – The authors argue that the “resources and representations” model of REST is a sustainable way for the management of web resources in a context of constant technological evolutions. Practical implications – When making information resources available on the web, a resource-oriented publishing model can avoid the costs associated with the creation of multiple interfaces. Originality/value – This paper re-examines the conceptual merits of REST and tra...

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: The role of spatial mnemonics in Hellenistic libraries, including the one in Alexandria, is studied to study, finding that they blend easily and logically with each other.
Abstract: Purpose – Mnemonics was a tool in classification and information seeking processes in pre-print libraries. The purpose of this paper is to study the role of spatial mnemonics in Hellenistic libraries, including the one in Alexandria. Design/methodology/approach – Since library- and information science has not explored this subject in depth, philology, rhetoric, book-history and archeology constitute the core literature. From this literature, the role of mnemonics in the libraries is discussed. Findings – A new description of the practice of classification and retrieval in Hellenistic libraries, based on spatial mnemonics. Originality/value – This paper is a new analysis of spatial mnemonics in the Hellenistic libraries. As will become clear, they blend easily and logically with each other.

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: A three-part framework of information engagement for situated gynecological cancers intertwine with medicalization of sexuality and gender power dynamics, situating information behaviors and interactions in women’s socio-health perceptions is presented.
Abstract: Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to present a three-part framework of information engagement for situated gynecological cancers. These particular cancers intertwine with medicalization of sexuality and gender power dynamics, situating information behaviors and interactions in women’s socio-health perceptions. Using Kavanagh and Broom’s feminist risk framework, the framework establishes functional and temporal parameters for sense-making and information engagement. Design/methodology/approach – This paper employs a structured, reiterative literature review with emergent thematic analysis. Nine indices from medicine, information studies, and sociology were searched using combinations of five terms on cervical cancer (CC) and 14 terms on information engagement in the title, abstract, and subject fields. Results were examined on a reiterative basis to identify emergent themes pertaining to knowledge development and information interactions. Findings – Environmentally, social stigma and gender roles inhi...

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: After a specified period of time, official records must be disposed of in a manner that is consistent with, and systematically carried out in accordance with prescribed records and information management guidelines and procedures.
Abstract: Sec. 2 Records Retention Schedule. The University of Texas System recognizes the need for orderly management and retrieval of all official State records and a documented records retention schedule in compliance with all State and federal laws and related regulations. All official records (paper, microform, electronic, including all electronically stored information (ESI), or any other media) will be retained for the retention periods stated in the institutional Records Retention Schedule as approved by the Texas State Library and Archives Commission and the Texas State Auditor's Office in compliance with Texas Government Code, Chapter 441. After a specified period of time, official records must be disposed of in a manner that is consistent with, and systematically carried out in accordance with prescribed records and information management guidelines and procedures.

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: The language utilised in Acceptable Use Policies in Scottish public libraries is investigated to ascertain if power relationships between local authorities, public libraries and users are apparent and if Foucault’s theory of panopticism is relevant to public libraries in this context.
Abstract: Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to investigate the language utilised in Acceptable Use Policies (AUP) in Scottish public libraries. Through this examination the paper aims to ascertain if power relationships between local authorities, public libraries and users are apparent. Finally, the paper aims to determine if Foucault’s theory of panopticism is relevant to public libraries in this context. Design/methodology/approach – The paper analyses all 32 of the AUPs used in Scottish public libraries, applying a Foucaldian discourse analysis to the content of the policies. Findings – By thorough examination of the literature the researchers were able to extract ten key features that ought to appear in an AUP. It was found that only one of 32 local authorities included information relating to all of these features. It was also found that one local authority contained as few as four of these key features. The median number of features included in the policies was seven. It was also found that power relatio...