Friday, April 17, 2009

information behaviour of the researcher of the future

I just was pointed at a report commisioned by JISC and the British library on the information behaviour of the Google Generation in the future. This can be found at: It has been around for a while (since January 2008) but still seems quite applicable.
One trend they discern is 'power browsing': quickly scanning materials across the broad collection of information on offer. Information literacy is and remains extremely important.
Interestingly they fear that there will be less of a role for the library. I am not sure that I share this worry. I feel that it is up to the library to change and offer a new physical space which matches the demand of the student and researcher of the future. Their walls no longer hold a monopoly so they must give the user a good reason to come and visit. And as the netgen is also a social generation, certainly offer them room for social interaction.

I do find the report is slightly more applicable to students than to researchers. Some points (e.g. power browsing) they acknowledge are not unique to the Google Generation but actually have been adopted by researchers of all generations.

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