The TPDL 2011 Doctoral Consortium, which I already blogged about in part 1, continued with 15 minutes of delay: Christopher Gibson also talked about eBooks – I wonder why his talk was not combined with Luca Colombo’s work in eBook reading experiences. Gibson’s specific topic is eBook lending services in UK public libraries. To quote the research questions from his paper:
Q1. How have public libraries addressed ebook service provision in the UK?
Q2. What challenges and opportunities exist in incorporating ebook lending into other reader services?
Q3. Is it feasible to lend ebook reading devices from public libraries?
Q4. How can the effectiveness of ebook lending services be measured?
Q5. How do library users view the provision of ebook lending services?
Q6. How can effective ebook lending services be developed?
To me an interesting aspect of his methodology was the use of targeted FOI (freedom of information) requests to gather data about eBook lending services. I cannot image this in this Germany where “Informationsfreiheit” is still in its infancy. One result from another survery done by Gibson: most eBooks are not included in library catalogs. I think this failure is found in German libraries too. In summary the PhD project looked very profound with some real practical values for libraries. On the other hand, the theoretical contribution, for instance the question what “lending” can mean in a digital library work, was only added in the discussion afterwards.
The next presenting PhD student was Adam Sofronjievic. I am sorry that I could not fully concentrate on his talk about a New Paradigm of Library Collaboration although it seemed very interesting. My talk is next