Managing Meaning: Language and Technology in Academic Libraries

Daniel Coffey, Karen Lawson

Abstract

Professionals in academe today are faced with an ever-increasing number of technological advances, and few feel the effects of these changes more than library professionals. With each change comes a new vocabulary that has the potential to cause communication rifts between departments in academic libraries. Through a comprehensive literature review and a selective survey of administrators of information technology, public services, and technical services in academic libraries belonging to the Association of Research Libraries, the authors show how the new terminology has affected communication among professionals in these positions, specifically in the context of technological decision-making, and ideas are put forth for ways to overcome this problem.

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