Business Information Review was privileged to be given a place at the launch of the DREaM project at the British Library’s Conference Centre this week.
DREaM (Developing Research and Excellence and Methods) intends to build research capacity and capability, raise the quality and standards of research through training, and attract LIS practitioners to undertake research and to collaborate with academic researchers. Watch out for the three training events that will take place in the next few months – October, January and April.
You can click on this link to access to the story of the day. The most impressive speaker for me was Blaise Cronin, the Rudy Professor of Information Science at Illinois – informative, entertaining and accessible. Blaise told the story of LIS research with a wealth of information. I was struck by many of his points. Has LIS research over many years actually created a consolidated body of accepted knowledge on which new research builds? Can the field be precisely defined? The questionable quality of much past research – which backs the need for DREaM); and the recent increase in citations to LIS research being made by non-LIS researchers. This suggests changes in the definition of ‘our’ subject area as well as useful opportunities for cross- discipline collaboration – and the need to identify where we are major players with influence and should be creating waves.
One minute madness sessions demonstrated the impact possible from very quick stories of new research – and certainly stimulated active networking in networking breaks. Two that particularly struck me were Frank Huysman, University of Amsterdam reporting on a survey sampling an entire community on the value of public libraries and Simon Burnett, Robert Gordon University, exploring whether storytelling and blogging can be used to transfer knowledge in the police service. An appropriate topic for this week in the UK!