The following article (preprint) was recently posted in the arXiv repository.
Northern Illinois University
Argonne National Library
Texas A&M University
Edward A. Fox
Virginia Tech University
As more scholarly content is being born digital or digitized, digital libraries are becoming increasingly vital to researchers leveraging scholarly big data for scientific discovery. Given the abundance of scholarly products-especially in environments created by the advent of social networking services-little is known about international scholarly information needs, information-seeking behavior, or information use. This paper aims to address these gaps by conducting an in-depth analysis of researchers in the United States and Qatar; learn about their research attitudes, practices, tactics, strategies, and expectations; and address the obstacles faced during research endeavors. Based on this analysis, the study identifies and describes new behavior patterns on the part of researchers as they engage in the information-seeking process. The analysis reveals that the use of academic social networks has remarkable effects on various scholarly activities. Further, this study identifies differences between students and faculty members in regard to their use of academic social networks, and it identifies differences between researchers according to discipline. The researchers who participated in the present study represent a range of disciplinary and cultural backgrounds. However, the study reports a number of similarities in terms of the researchers’ scholarly activities. Finally, the study illuminates some of the implications for the design of research platforms.
From the Acknowledgments
An earlier version of the initial work was presented at the TPDL 2011 conference and the ICADL 2013 conference.
Direct to Full Text Article (30 pages; PDF)