‘Working together: evolving value for academic libraries’ is a research project, commissioned by SAGE Publications Ltd, aiming to investigate the value of academic libraries for academic departments. SAGE appointed LISU to undertake the research in December 2011.
The value of libraries has become an important focus for research in recent years. In an increasingly tough climate for many libraries around the world, being able to demonstrate impact and value is crucial.
One of the key areas the project team intends to explore is the value of academic libraries to academic departments and how this can be improved. The objective of the project is to provide the academic library community with a better understanding of the connections between academic libraries and academic departments and to identify practical ways to enhance their working relationship .
The project consists of a series of case studies covering three broad geographical areas and a triangulation of the results through the survey instrument. The research team is planning to conduct eight case studies of academic libraries at both research intensive and teaching institutions. Read more about case study selection. In order to give an indication of how typical the case study experiences are within their wider regional and academic context, a series of triangulation surveys will also be carried out. In each country where case studies are conducted, an informal survey will be distributed amongst librarians to ascertain the extent to which the issues and findings from the case studies resonate with their own experience.
December 2011 – June 2012
The project consists of 4 phases:
- Phase 1: a brief phase of desk research aiming to identify recent significant publications on the issue of the value of academic libraries (January)
- Phase 2: a series of eight case studies of higher education libraries in the UK, US and Scandinavia will be carried out (January – March 2012)
- Phase 3: triangulation of the case study results with a series of informal surveys, which will be distributed to librarians to ascertain the extent to which the issues and findings from the case study resonate with their own experience (April-May)
- Phase 4: the evidence gathered will be synthesised into a final report (June)