CoLIS8 Copenhagen

The eight in the series of CoLIS (Conceptions of Library and Information Science) conferences was held this month in Copenhagen. The splendidly efficient organization was provided by the Royal School of Librarianship and Information Science, the Danish iSchool, now being incorporated into the University of Copenhagen’s Arts faculty. As always with CoLIS, the topics covered… Continue reading CoLIS8 Copenhagen

Imagination, exciting mixes and the improvement of information research

“It is my contention”, writes Paul Sturges in a recent article on imagination in LIS research’, “that much of LIS research at all levels, throughout the world, is dull formulaic and often disgracefully bad”. This is bad for research, of course, but “given that LIS is a practical discipline, it is something of a professional… Continue reading Imagination, exciting mixes and the improvement of information research

The declining impact of the impact factor?

This is an amended version of an editorial to be published in Journal of Documentation. Impact factors have been, for quite a few years now, the single metric most closely associated with the ‘quality’ of an academic journal, or similar dissemination mechanism. This simple, perhaps simplistic, measure has been receiving an increasing level of criticism… Continue reading The declining impact of the impact factor?

Thomas Jefferson, Dwight D. Eisenhower, and information history for the future

I gave a talk to a meeting of CILIP’s Library and Information History group, which was celebrating its 50th anniversary. It was a short and informal presentation, which – as it was US election day – had a presidential theme, and looked at some reasons why library and information history is worthwhile as a subject… Continue reading Thomas Jefferson, Dwight D. Eisenhower, and information history for the future

Waxing and waning, but hopefully mostly waxing

Blaise Cronin presents an interesting and insightful article in the latest issue of Information Research on the waxing and waning of a field; reflections on information studies education. It is the latest contribution to a very long debate, going back over three decades, as to whether library / information science has a good future, as… Continue reading Waxing and waning, but hopefully mostly waxing

Library Science lecturer job at City University London

Some good news (for a change, maybe) in the academic library/information world. We are recruiting a new staff member in the Centre for Information Science, City University London. Full-time, permanent position, intended for a fairly new entrant to academic life; looking for someone to do a mix of teaching, course development, research, publication, and professional… Continue reading Library Science lecturer job at City University London

On the teaching of cataloguing

Few things have raised as much controversy in the normally quiet world of library/education as how, and why, we teach cataloguing. On the one side are those who mourn the decline of teaching of traditional style ‘cat and class’, fearing that we are denying our students one of the few undeniably unique skills of the… Continue reading On the teaching of cataloguing

London (and Aslib) old and new

While leading a course for Aslib last week at the Etc. venues training centre near the Tower of London last week, I was struck by the view out of the window; which, I'm glad to say, the participants were polite enough not to stare at. In the foreground, Robert Smirke's Royal Mint building of 1809,… Continue reading London (and Aslib) old and new

Fads, assimilations and knowledge management

While writing a review for Aslib Proceedings of a new text on knowledge management, Kevin C. Desouza and Scott Paquette's Knowledge Management: an introduction, I commented that there was a bit of a contradiction in the way that the book addresses Tom Wilson's criticism – in his 2002 paper, The nonsense of knowledge management -… Continue reading Fads, assimilations and knowledge management

The mapping of science and the information sciences

It is just over fifty years since Derek de Solla Price produced his best known work: Little Science, Big Science. It was on the required reading list for my information science masters course, and – I suspect like many other students of the subject at that time – I wondered what it was doing there.… Continue reading The mapping of science and the information sciences