The Effect of Users’ Work Tasks on Librarians’ Database Selection

The latest craze in information searching research is task-based information searching, that views a user’s task as a central factor for understanding information-seeking behaviors and designing information retrieval systems. To analyze empirically the role of tasks in information searching, specifically in the business domain, this research examines the database selection process utilized by librarians from the perspective of users’ tasks. Part one of the research is centered on identifying and characterizing business tasks and the related questions required to complete the tasks. An inventory of 30 business tasks and 144 associated business questions was created through content analysis of Harvard Business School cases and other published materials. The 2nd section of the study explored the impact of tasks on database selection by performing a survey among business librarians in academic institutions. Nine sets of survey questionnaires were developed depending on the identified business…

Contents: Effect of Users’ Work Tasks on Librarians’ Database Selection

Chapter 1: Introduction
1.1 Problem Statement
1.2 Purpose of the Study and Research Questions
1.3 Definitions
Chapter 2: Literature Review
2.1 Task-based Information Searching
2.1.1 A Single Task Characteristic
2.1.2 Multiple Task Types/Domains
2.1.3 Summary
2.2 System Development for Task-based Information Searching
2.2.1 Domain-specific Task-based Information Systems
2.2.2 General-purpose Information Systems
2.2.3 Summary
2.3 Database Selection Systems
2.3.1 Previous Database Selection Systems
2.3.2 Limitations of Previous Database Selection Systems
2.3.3 Summary
2.4 Business Information Seeking
2.4.1 Business Information Seekers
2.4.2 Business Databases
2.4.3 Summary
Chapter 3: Research Methods
3.1 Research Paradigm
3.2 Research Design
3.3 Data Collection
3.3.1 Identifying Business Tasks
3.3.2 Identifying Task-associated Business Questions
3.3.3 Identifying Business Questions Requiring External Information
3.3.4 Librarians’ Judgments about Database Selection
3.4 Data Analysi
3.4.1 Task Type Analysis
3.4.2 Business Question Analysis
3.4.3 Types of Information Needed and Databases Selected
3.4.4 Patterns among Elements
3.4.5 Influence of Tasks
3.5 Criteria for Verification
3.6 Limitations of the Study
Chapter 4: Inventory of Business Tasks and Related Questions
4.1 Tasks
4.2 Business Questions
4.2.1 Identifying Question Similarities
4.2.2 Coreness of Entities in Business Questions
4.2.3 Focal Entities in Business Questions
Chapter 5: Influence of Tasks on Librarians’ Database Selection Process
5.1 Overall Model of the Role of Tasks
5.2 Types of Information Needed
5.3 Database Selection Criteria
5.3.1 General Database-related Criteria
5.3.2 Question-related Criteria
5.3.3 Task-related Criteria
5.4 Patterns among Elements
5.5 Database Selection Process Model
Chapter 6: Significant Findings, Discussions, Implications, and Future Research
6.1 Significant Findings and Discussions
6.2 Implications
6.2.1 Theoretical and Practical Implications
6.2.2 Implications for Task-based Database Selection System
6.2.3 Implications for Information Packaging
6.3 Future Research…

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