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Librarians are already in the field: how and why to begin ethnographic fieldwork

Emary, Leah (2015) Librarians are already in the field: how and why to begin ethnographic fieldwork. Bibliothek - Forschung und Praxis, 39 (2). pp. 138-142.

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Abstract

Librarians want to know what users need and want from the library. Ethnography is a useful method for gaining insight into user needs and wants. Because of our presence both inside and outside of the communities we serve, librarians are uniquely well-suited for using ethnographic methods to observe and analyze how our users behave. This paper will therefore describe why librarians are ideal ethnographers and how ethnography provides unique data for library and information science (LIS) researchers. It describes two ways to enter the field: first it explains how to establish rapport with the wider study population and second how to begin fieldwork with a straightforward, low-risk data collection task.

Item Type: Article
Status: Published
DOI: 10.1515/bfp-2015-0016
Subjects: Z Bibliography. Library Science. Information Resources > Z665 Library Science. Information Science
School/Department: Information Learning Services
URI: http://ray.yorksj.ac.uk/id/eprint/248

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