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ERIC Number: EJ873169
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2008
Pages: 20
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 24
ISSN: ISSN-1941-126X
Decision Support Databases in Libraries: Three Cases and a Brief Review of Disparate Literatures
Wheeler, William
Journal of Electronic Resources Librarianship, v20 n1 p16-35 2008
This article is about how information is gathered in organizations to make decisions. There is actually a long history in economics on this topic, called the "economics of information," but this is a bare beginning on the topic for libraries, suggesting only a few patterns from observation and a few literatures that might help with the challenge. In libraries, we now need even more information in order to take control over what we purchase and help us make decisions about licensing (to name only two problematic areas). More often than not, this information, formerly gathered in spreadsheets, text documents, and hand-written notes, is now gathered in various kinds of databases, which are also used as the basis for arguments we use to get funding, to persuade users that we are appropriate stewards of monies given, to prove libraries have enduring value, and to fight the myth that libraries will disappear because, "pretty soon, everything will be online." Here is brought together a number of observations and literatures, from the highly theoretical to the more specific, as a starting point. In the end, I suggest we adopt four strategies: fostering an organizational culture of learning, designing for future flexibility, committing to long-term solutions, and sacrificing short-term economies and tactics in favor of long-term strategies for knowledge savings. Ultimately this means a commitment to human resources, that is, more staff with more training to handle the wider array of materials that we now get because of the digital layer.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Media Staff
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A