What users want: Assessing government information preferences to drive information services

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

47 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Access to government information has changed dramatically in the past 20 years. There are many indicators of information use, but it is challenging for service institutions to gain a current and comprehensive view of the research practices and preferences of their users. Information stakeholders must seek out current data to gauge the potential success of new initiatives and policies in order to meet user needs. To that end, a user study was conducted on the University of Montana campus in spring of 2006. The survey was sent to a random, stratified sample of the campus population. The instrument included questions on frequency of government information use, methods of locating and learning about government documents, awareness of the Federal Depository Library Program (FDLP), and service and format preferences. The results show that the majority of researchers are using government information at least quarterly and that they most often use general search engines to find it. Respondents indicate a strong interest in alerting services, tutorials, virtual reference, and topic-oriented assistance. Although some respondents prefer printed materials for specific types of information, users generally want to find and access government information online. The results offer current data for program planning, collection development, and information policy creation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)203-218
Number of pages16
JournalGovernment Information Quarterly
Volume26
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2009

Fingerprint

information service
information policy
program planning
research practice
search engine
random sample
development policy
assistance
stakeholder
learning

Keywords

  • Academic libraries
  • Data-driven decision making
  • FDLP
  • Government information
  • Information policy
  • Use study
  • User survey

Cite this

What users want : Assessing government information preferences to drive information services. / Burroughs, Jennie M.

In: Government Information Quarterly, Vol. 26, No. 1, 01.01.2009, p. 203-218.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

@article{d6d9a9a60f8c4300ace0f73d37ad1ba0,
title = "What users want: Assessing government information preferences to drive information services",
abstract = "Access to government information has changed dramatically in the past 20 years. There are many indicators of information use, but it is challenging for service institutions to gain a current and comprehensive view of the research practices and preferences of their users. Information stakeholders must seek out current data to gauge the potential success of new initiatives and policies in order to meet user needs. To that end, a user study was conducted on the University of Montana campus in spring of 2006. The survey was sent to a random, stratified sample of the campus population. The instrument included questions on frequency of government information use, methods of locating and learning about government documents, awareness of the Federal Depository Library Program (FDLP), and service and format preferences. The results show that the majority of researchers are using government information at least quarterly and that they most often use general search engines to find it. Respondents indicate a strong interest in alerting services, tutorials, virtual reference, and topic-oriented assistance. Although some respondents prefer printed materials for specific types of information, users generally want to find and access government information online. The results offer current data for program planning, collection development, and information policy creation.",
keywords = "Academic libraries, Data-driven decision making, FDLP, Government information, Information policy, Use study, User survey",
author = "Burroughs, {Jennie M}",
year = "2009",
month = "1",
day = "1",
doi = "10.1016/j.giq.2008.06.003",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "26",
pages = "203--218",
journal = "Government Information Quarterly",
issn = "0740-624X",
publisher = "Elsevier Limited",
number = "1",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - What users want

T2 - Assessing government information preferences to drive information services

AU - Burroughs, Jennie M

PY - 2009/1/1

Y1 - 2009/1/1

N2 - Access to government information has changed dramatically in the past 20 years. There are many indicators of information use, but it is challenging for service institutions to gain a current and comprehensive view of the research practices and preferences of their users. Information stakeholders must seek out current data to gauge the potential success of new initiatives and policies in order to meet user needs. To that end, a user study was conducted on the University of Montana campus in spring of 2006. The survey was sent to a random, stratified sample of the campus population. The instrument included questions on frequency of government information use, methods of locating and learning about government documents, awareness of the Federal Depository Library Program (FDLP), and service and format preferences. The results show that the majority of researchers are using government information at least quarterly and that they most often use general search engines to find it. Respondents indicate a strong interest in alerting services, tutorials, virtual reference, and topic-oriented assistance. Although some respondents prefer printed materials for specific types of information, users generally want to find and access government information online. The results offer current data for program planning, collection development, and information policy creation.

AB - Access to government information has changed dramatically in the past 20 years. There are many indicators of information use, but it is challenging for service institutions to gain a current and comprehensive view of the research practices and preferences of their users. Information stakeholders must seek out current data to gauge the potential success of new initiatives and policies in order to meet user needs. To that end, a user study was conducted on the University of Montana campus in spring of 2006. The survey was sent to a random, stratified sample of the campus population. The instrument included questions on frequency of government information use, methods of locating and learning about government documents, awareness of the Federal Depository Library Program (FDLP), and service and format preferences. The results show that the majority of researchers are using government information at least quarterly and that they most often use general search engines to find it. Respondents indicate a strong interest in alerting services, tutorials, virtual reference, and topic-oriented assistance. Although some respondents prefer printed materials for specific types of information, users generally want to find and access government information online. The results offer current data for program planning, collection development, and information policy creation.

KW - Academic libraries

KW - Data-driven decision making

KW - FDLP

KW - Government information

KW - Information policy

KW - Use study

KW - User survey

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=56949084086&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=56949084086&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1016/j.giq.2008.06.003

DO - 10.1016/j.giq.2008.06.003

M3 - Article

AN - SCOPUS:56949084086

VL - 26

SP - 203

EP - 218

JO - Government Information Quarterly

JF - Government Information Quarterly

SN - 0740-624X

IS - 1

ER -