Sustainability of Scholarly Information

Jul 2014 | 256pp

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Sustainability of Scholarly Information

G. G. Chowdhury

This is the first book to discuss the sustainable development of digital scholarly information in three key aspects: economic, social and environmental sustainability. 

Taking as its starting point the premise that digital information systems and services form the backbone of a knowledge society and digital economy, this book explores the challenges of ensuring sustainability of information in an evolving digital world. Author Gobinda Chowdhury attempts to find answers to five key questions in the context of scholarly information systems and services: 
  1. How sustainable are today’s information systems and services? 
  2. How can we ensure the sustainability of information throughout its lifetime? 
  3. Can today’s information systems and services face the new economic challenges while providing easy and equitable access to information for everyone? 
  4. Can the level and quality of information services be sustained over a long period of time? 
  5. Can all these activities be performed in an environment-friendly manner? 
Chowdhury takes the approach of a research monograph based on literature review and meta-analysis of the issues and challenges associated with the various forms of sustainability of digital information systems and services. He proposes new models for study and research based on the critical analysis of developments in related areas. 
Illustrated with case studies and informed by the latest research, the chapters cover: 
  • Economic sustainability of information
  • Environmental sustainability of information
  • Social sustainability of information
  • Sustainability of digital libraries and information services
  • Emerging issues and policies
  • Sustainability of information models
  • Research issues and challenges. 
Readership: This cutting-edge text is a must-read for those involved in setting policy and direction for information institutions, digital library managers and developers, researchers and students on LIS and digital information courses.

1. The sustainability of information: an outline 
  • Introduction
  • The concept of sustainability
  • Sustainable development
  • Information about sustainability vs sustainable information
  • About this book
  • Summary
  • References  
2. The three dimensions of sustainability
  • Introduction
  • Economic sustainability
  • Social sustainability
  • Environmental sustainability
  • The three pillars of sustainable development
  • An integrated approach to sustainable development
  • The sustainability of information
  • Summary
  • References  
3. The economic sustainability of information 
  • Introduction
  • The publishing industry
  • The generic business model for scholarly information
  • Open access
  • Access to digital information
  • Access to journals and databases
  • The economics of digital information
  • Value-added information
  • Summary
  • References  
4. The environmental sustainability of information
  • Introduction
  • The IPCC report and GHG emissions
  • The carbon footprint of IT
  • Green IT
  • Measuring the environmental impact of information services
  • Summary
  • References  
5. The social sustainability of information
  • Introduction
  • Related studies
  • Users, community and social sustainability
  • Indicators for the social sustainability of information
  • How to study the social sustainability of information
  • Information systems and services for sustainable development
  • Legal and policy frameworks
  • Technology, infrastructure and social sustainability
  • Users, culture and social sustainability
  • Summary
  • References  
6. Printed vs digital content and sustainability issues 
  • Introduction
  • Estimating the carbon footprint of printed content
  • Factors responsible for GHG emissions from printed and digital content
  • Summary
  • References  
7. Open access models and the sustainability of information 
  • Introduction
  • Open access policies of institutions and funding bodies
  • Open access content and data
  • Gold open access and the sustainability of information
  • Summary
  • References  
8. Sustainable management of open access information: a conceptual model 
  • Introduction
  • Managing open access information
  • Attributes of a new open access content and data management system
  • The conceptual model
  • Opportunities and challenges
  • The sustainability of the proposed open access content and data management system
  • Summary
  • References  
9. Green information services: a conceptual model 
  • Introduction
  • Cloud computing
  • A framework for green information services for the higher education sector
  • Summary
  • References  
10. Information access and sustainability issues 
  • Introduction
  • Cloud computing and information retrieval research
  • Measuring the environmental impact of information access: the lifecycle analysis approach
  • Measuring the environmental impact of information retrieval: an alternative approach
  • Green user behaviour
  • Summary
  • References  
11. The sustainability of information models
  • Introduction
  • The three pillars of sustainable information services
  • Scholarly communication processes
  • An integrated approach to research on the sustainability of digital information
  • The sustainability of specific information services
  • Summary
  • References  
12. Research on sustainable information
  • Introduction
  • Open access and a paradigm shift in information management, education and research
  • Facilitating content-specific access and use
  • Information research directions
  • Conclusion 
  • References

"...an extremely useful introduction to the increasingly important topic of sustainability, and one which will undoubtedly provoke discussion amongst information researchers."
- Online Information Review

"All in all the book is worth reading and would be a good substitute to many university courses on digital libraries, digitisation, general library management, information management, etc. It also suggests interesting topics for future research, so prospective young researchers on various levels may exploit it looking for research problems to study."
- Information Research

Professor Gobinda Chowdhury BSc Hons, MSc, PhD, FCLIP is Professor in Information Science at iSchool@northumbria, and Head of the Department of Mathematics and Information Sciences at Northumbria University. Before joining Northumbria University he was a Professor and Director of the Centre for Information and Knowledge Management at the University of Technology Sydney, Australia. For over 25 years he has worked as an academic and researcher in information science in different parts of the world including Asia, Africa, Europe and Australia. For the past few years he has been actively involved in the iSchools activities. Professor Chowdhury has written or edited 15 books and over 150 research papers.