Info Searchers? Info Consumers? Info Collaboraters?
Info challenges for researchers today and predict for the future, by the senior vice president, market development at ProQuest, interviewed by Sian Harris in Research Information.
“The core content needs of researchers today have not significantly changed over time. Researchers still need access to high-quality scholarly journal articles, A&I databases and books, as well as primary sources like data sets, historic newspapers and documents. (…)
However, what has really changed is the way that researchers need to find, access and use content.
Researchers expect that content will be delivered to them electronically, when they want it, where they want it and in a format they can use. As new electronic platforms like mobile devices and e-readers emerge, publishers need to adapt our content for these devices. Also, as the amount of available electronic content increases, researchers need to be assured that they have located everything that is relevant to their research.
Users are much more confident in their abilities to find and use information. (…)
We have seen that researchers are beginning to adopt the same search habits that they are using on consumer sites like Amazon, Google and Facebook. They tend to enter fewer search terms and expect to be able to narrow their results after the search.
Researchers also expect to be able to do more with content once they find it. Sharing content is becoming more prominent.
One big challenge is navigating the sheer volume of material that is available to researchers. They can never be assured that they have found all of relevant material for their research needs.
I think information resources will become more personalised for researchers’ needs. I can envision tools that will push content of interest to researchers based upon the content that they have searched in the past or articles that they have looked at and rated highly.
There will be more opportunities for researchers to network and share content with their self-defined group of peers. I can see information resources that provide spaces for collaboration and interaction with fellow researchers.
Sauer-Games, Mary. Working with changing patterns. Research Information, February/March 2011.