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ERIC Number: ED276449
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1985
Pages: 18
Abstractor: N/A
Operations Research Applied to Libraries and Information Centers.
Westerman, Mel
The greater organizational complexity of libraries and information centers in recent years has given rise to more complex problems for managers. To facilitate solutions, operations research (OR) techniques have been developed that consider the quantitative dimensions of problems along with their political and organizational aspects. Eight standard OR research techniques have been identified as the application of allocation, competition, inventory, queuing, replacement, routing, search, and sequencing problems to obtain the information needed in certain recurring situations. This paper focuses on benefit-cost analysis, a type of competition problem that is typically used to: (1) compare all the good effects (benefits) of a program with all the bad effects (costs and disbenefits) to judge whether it is better to implement or not to implement the program; (2) determine which of alternative versions of programs are best; and (3) decide what collection of programs or projects constitutes the best expenditure within a set, overall budget limit. Although most frequently used to decide capital investment programs, benefit-cost techniques may also be used for smaller programs, such as the retention of back periodical issues in a library with a strong emphasis on current information sources. Quantitative manipulations are often simple, and computers are used as aids in performing more complex calculations. Notes are provided. (KM)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Administrators; Researchers; Practitioners
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A