International and Comparative Librarianship

S. R. Ranganathan, P. N. Kaula, R. N. Sharma, J. F. Harvey, D. J. Foskett, J. P. Danton, M. M. Jackson, etc.
This Blogosphere has a slant towards India [a.k.a Indica, Indo, South-Asian, Oriental, Bharat, Hindustan, Asian-Indian (not American Indian)].

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

A bibliometric chronicling of Library and Information Science’s first hundred years

By Vincent Larivière, Cassidy R.Sugimoto and Blaise Cronin [Journal of the American Society for Information Science and Technology, Volume 63, Issue 5, pages 997–1016, May 2012]

Abstract: This paper presents a condensed history of LIS over the course of more than a century using a variety of bibliometric measures. It examines in detail the variable rate of knowledge production in the field, shifts in subject coverage, the dominance of particular publication genres at different times, prevailing modes of production, interactions with other disciplines, and, more generally, observes how the field has evolved. It shows that, despite a striking growth in the number of journals, papers and contributing authors, a decrease was observed in the field’s market-share of all social science and humanities research. Collaborative authorship is now the norm, a pattern seen across the social sciences. The idea of boundary crossing was also examined: in 2010, nearly 60% of authors who published in LIS also published in another discipline. This high degree of permeability in LIS was also demonstrated through reference and citation practices: LIS scholars now cite and receive citations from other fields more than from LIS itself. Two major structural shifts are revealed from the data: in 1960, where LIS changed from a professional field focused on librarianship to an academic field focused on information and use and in 1990, when LIS began to receive a growing number of citations from outside the field, notably from Computer Science and Management, as well as a dramatic increase in the number of authors contributing to the literature of the field. Continue reading the full paper

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Tuesday, May 06, 2014

Library Value in the Developing World, Report

info courtesy:
"SAGE, in consultation with Claire Creaser of LISU the national research and information centre based at Loughborough University (UK), and Lucy Browse of International Network for the Availability of Scientific Publications (INASP) have published the results of a research study, Library Value in the Developing World. Below is a summary of the study and findings, from the SAGE website.:
Raising awareness of how the library supports teaching and research staff is key to demonstrating library value in developing countries, concludes a new report published today. The findings are the result of a six-month research study with twelve developing country institutions conducted by SAGE exploring perceptions of the value of academic libraries by teaching and research staff in developing countries.
The findings are based on a series of surveys, interviews and case studies with twelve developing country institutions; Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Honduras; Indonesian Research Institute; University of Cape Coast, Ghana; National Scientific Library, Georgia; Maseno University, Kenya; Convenant University and Obafemi Awolowo University, Nigeria; University of the Philippines Visayas, Philippines; University of Thies, Senegal; Makerere University, Uganda; Institute of Intellectual Property of National University Kiev, Ukraine, and the University of Zimbabwe.

‘Library Value in the Developing World’ reports that developing country librarians are beginning to recognize the importance of evaluating their value for research and teaching staff. Communicating the value of their role however remains a key challenge. Librarians noted that whilst they receive positive feedback about the resource collections they provide, there is limited awareness of how librarians can better support research and teaching staff beyond these traditional parameters.
Chief considerations
Outlined in the report are examples of best practice from the case study institutions, along with recommendations on how working relations between academic libraries and stakeholders could be enhanced. These include:
  • Communication
    The report highlights the value of increased engagement between individual libraries and their academic staff to help reinforce their changing role in supporting academia and in supporting training and advice. Developing research partnerships, integrated teaching, research services and literacy instruction were all considered part of the ‘reinvented’ librarian role, beyond providing access to resources. The report suggests that librarians are building an increased understanding of marketing skills, as well as developing external relationships with the scholarly community to promote advocacy for the library.
  • Support from the university
    Universities can also help to build awareness of the role of the library, the report advises, by investing in the professional development of librarians in both their provision of research and teaching skills, and by enabling librarians more contact time with research and teaching staff. It also advises that the University provide internal marketing support to help raise the status and recognition of librarians and the value they add to the work of academic colleagues and senior managers.
  • Collaboration with publishers
    There are also considerations for publishers. The report advises that further research be conducted to understand the ongoing needs of developing-country libraries and their work. Part of this includes the adaptation of marketing and online resources to enable greater access for those in developing countries.


Saturday, April 12, 2014


The eye-catching rotunda at Jamia Hamdard Library

DANIEL MAJCHROWICZ, Department of Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations, Harvard University. Published on October 11, 2013

Extract [info courtesy:]

On the same shelf:
  • Libraries in India - National Developmental Perspectives: A saga of Fifty years since independence, by Mohamed Taher Amazon    
  • Islamic Studies in India : A survey of the human, institutional and documentary sources by Mohamed Taher    More books written / edited by: Dr. Mohamed Taher 
  • Dismal Delhi libraries force readers prefer books to multimedia and other modes of recreation: Survey India Today

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Tuesday, March 18, 2014

The bad news ... even 25 years after its invention, not everything is available on the Internet; The good news ... 33 reasons why libraries with physical books still matter

(Pew Internet’s survey explored in depth what people do at libraries)

  • 33 reasons why books, libraries and librarians are still extremely important, by Will Sherman (quoted at Cites & Insights):
1. Not everything is available on the internet
2. Digital libraries are not the internet
3. The internet isn’t free
4. The internet complements libraries, but it doesn’t replace them
5. School libraries and librarians improve student test scores
6. Digitization doesn’t mean destruction
7. In fact, digitization means survival
8. Digitization is going to take a while. A long while.
9. Libraries aren’t just books
10. Mobile devices aren’t the end of books, or libraries
11. The hype might really just be hype
12. Library attendance isn’t falling—it’s just more virtual now
13. Like businesses, digital libraries still need human staffing
14. We just can’t count on physical libraries disappearing
15. Google Book Search “don’t work”
16. Physical libraries can adapt to cultural change
17. Physical libraries are adapting to cultural change
18. Eliminating libraries would cut short an important process of cultural evolution
19. The internet isn’t DIY
20. Wisdom of crowds is untrustworthy, because of the tipping point
21. Librarians are the irreplaceable counterparts to web moderators
22. Unlike moderators, librarians must straddle the line between libraries and the internet
23. The internet is a mess
24. The internet is subject to manipulation
25. Libraries’ collections employ a well-formulated system of citation
26. It can be hard to isolate concise information on the internet
27. Libraries can preserve the book experience
28. Libraries are stable while the web is transient
29. Libraries can be surprisingly helpful for news collections and archives
30. Not everyone has access to the internet
31. Not everyone can afford books
32. Libraries are a stopgap to anti-intellectualism
33. Old books are valuable
Society is not ready to abandon the library, and it probably won’t ever be. Libraries can adapt to social and technological changes, but they can’t be replaced. While libraries are distinct from the internet, librarians are the most suited professionals to guide scholars and citizens toward a better understanding of how to find valuable information online. Indeed, a lot of information is online. But a lot is still on paper. Instead of regarding libraries as obsolete, state and federal governments should increase funding for improved staffing and technology. Rather than lope blindly through the digital age, guided only by the corporate interests of web economics, society should foster a culture of guides and guideposts. Today, more than ever, libraries and librarians are extremely important for the preservation and improvement of our culture."

See also:
  • HOW TO KEEP A LIBRARY OF (PHYSICAL) BOOKS, Meditations on strategy and life, Ryan Holiday 
Below are some tips on keeping and maintaining your own library. I hope they help:
-First, you have to read a lot.  
-Buy, buy buy. I took some heat for criticizing checking books out from the library a while back.   
-In other words, RESIST THE KINDLE.  
-Organize, organize, organize. 
-Become a resource for others.  
-Refer back to them!  
-The point of owning the books is to use them.  
-Books are no substitute for human contact, but it is still beneficial, I think, to be in the physical company of the greats.  
-Don’t be afraid to quit books that suck.  
-On that note, don’t collect for the sake of collecting.  
-Don’t loan.  
-It’s all about the IKEA shelves.  
-Collect the unusual.  
-Go through other people’s libraries. 
-Having a library keeps the information fresh in your head. continue reading
1. Not Everything is Available on the Internet
2. Digital Libraries are not the Internet
3. The Internet isn’t Free
4. The Internet Compliments Libraries, but Doesn’t Replace Them
5. School Libraries and Librarians Improve Student Test Scores
6. Libraries Aren’t Just Books
7. Mobile Devices are not the End of Books or Libraries
8. Library Attendance isn’t Falling It’s Just More Virtual
9. Physical Libraries are Adapting to Cultural Change
10. Eliminating Libraries would Cut Short an Important Process of Cultural Evolution

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Sunday, March 09, 2014

Does Bollywood incite sexual violence in India? Amir Khan says: "film industry really needs to look inwards"

Post update:  April 13,2014
Most people are happily ignorant of the fact that they’re being force fed daily with high doses of “Sexual Objectification of Women”. Sexual objectification is the concept of treating a person merely as an object or instrument of sexual pleasure, tagging them as ‘sex objects’.
While men’s sexuality is always showcased as ‘subjective’ (or as a whole package viz. intelligence, smartness, attitude and maybe looks), women’s sexuality is portrayed objectively. And nothing defines this better than the video above rightly titled “No Country For Women”.
When Amitabh Bacchan asks us to get polio drops, we listen and we act & imitate.
When Salman Khan pinches the bottom of a stranger (girl) walking down the streets in a movie scene, the crowd smiles, whistles and learns. Then they imitate.
When Aamir Khan raises his voice against female foeticide, we become enraged, officials raid illegal sex determination centers, we spread the good message. We imitate.
Note: A headline news story of 2012 (23-year Delhi rape victim dies in Singapore) continues to haunt and raises questions about the direct &/or indirect impact of the Bollywood...

Does Bollywood incite sexual violence in India? Tom Brook: 
Still from Ra.One"(Statistical) Figures suggest a woman is raped in India every 22 minutes. Does the way female characters are depicted on screen play a role? Tom Brook asks some of the industry's major players...
"In the soul searching that has accompanied these shocking stories, the question has been asked: is Bollywood partly to blame for fomenting sexual violence against Indian women because of its imagery and narratives?
"The portrayal of women in Indian cinema is showing some encouraging signs of improvement but top Indian director Mira Nair isn’t happy with mainstream Bollywood depictions which she sees as often demeaning.  “A lot of our films go down the same old stereotype,” she says. “When there’s a sexy babe she has to gyrate and gyrate and she has to be an object of great allure and sex appeal and almost I would say vulgarity.”
Stars concede Bollywood may be partly to blame but argue that the entertainment industry shouldn’t really be the main focus of concern. “We don’t have proper law and order,” says Aamir Khan. “If you’d look at rape as a crime in India, most of the rape cases don’t get reported. So, I think that while the film industry really needs to look inwards, towards ourselves to see how we portray women in our films – and certainly a lot needs to be done there – I think the larger problem, and the larger issue, is that our law and order machinery has just completely failed us.” ... "Feminist critics have argued that the continual sexual objectification of women on screen can have a harmful impact on women in the real world and can lead to acts of violence." [source: [BBC]   / Bollywood culture promoting rape culture « Area 14/8 
"The situation has a comic dimension too because the contradictions in this traditional society’s approach to money and sex are also being highlighted. The new heroes are those who make a fast buck and display an entrepreneurial animal spirit. The films that once used two swaying flowers to represent a kissing couple now come suffused with semi-nudity and vulgar lyrics. The sexualisation of culture by Bollywood, the media and the fashion industry has followed economic liberalisation. An occasional conservative backlash cannot curtail the insatiable demand for soft-porn and beer bars." [source: Moral Panic in India by L.K. SHARMA]
"Lately, there has been a paradigm shift in the depiction of female actresses who easily drop clothes stating the demand of the story. Hot, steamy scenes and clothe-shy damsels are at their best. Registering a significant change, Canadian porn actress has featured in a Bollywood movie and sensuousness seems to be most profiting element in the film industry. It triggers debate that obscenity affects mindsets and Bollywood has also been instrumental." [source: Is vulgarity in Bollywood impacting crime?]
"The overt hypersexualization of the song-dance sequence is a kind of“MTVization” of Hindi film music; the song is packaged as a 5-minutevideo which can advertise the film and be sold as an independent commodity. Observing the changes in the dancing and musical style Lal (1998) writes, “Whereas in older song-and-dance sequence the erotic had an element of coy and the tentative, today the erotic has in it elements of rank sexuality, brutish pride, and vulgarity. Naked feet adorned by anklets have been replaced with high leather boots and the pelvic thrusts display the hunger of a newly-unleashed sexuality. As in other spheres, in the theatre of sexuality, the Indian adventure with globalization is on display”(p. 231). Websites such as,, and, catering to diasporic Indians, sell DVDs containing item num-bers from films."  [source: GLOBALIZATION OF BOLLYWOOD: ANETHNOGRAPHY OF NON-ELITE AUDIENCES IN INDIA by Shakuntala Rao]
Jasbir Jassi, who shot to fame during the pop revolution of the 90's, is in a different space these days. He feels enough is enough and something needs to be done about "vulgar lyrics" in Bollywood songs that stand to spoil the youth. And coming Women's Day, August 8, the' Dil Le Gayi Kudi Gujarat Ki' and 'Kudi Kudi 'hit maker is set to address the media along side Ritu Beri in Delhi to talk about issues concerning women's safety in India.  [source: Jassi to address the issue of women's safety on Women's Day by Abhimanyu Mishra, TNN ]  
Sex in Bollywood movies - World Review - -- Bollywood Is Demonic:
If you want to keep your righteousness values, avoid Bollywood movies. Until around the late 70’s, Bollywood movies were ok, but now they have simply become stupid, silly, and demonic...
1. Excessive immoral values are portrayed in most bollywood movies.
2. Sexy dance and music scenes.
3. Portraying Materialism and Modern (western) culture as the goal.
4. Getting away from Indian/Hindu culture and tradition.
5. Depicting sexual lust.
For your information:
1. Bollywood movies show nothing but violence, sex and immoral values. Lust, Greed and Anger are the three gates to hell. Materialism turns an intelligent person into one of total ignorance.
2. Sexy dance and music scenes turn one into a materialist person with total ignorance to the truth. continue reading :
Bollywood in frame over women as sex objects  "Sexual violence in India has made headlines across the world over the recent months. Activists have pinned the blame on Bollywood's culture of objectifying women, but how much truth is there to the accusation?" [image courtesy:]
Katrina Kaif in the film Agneepath (Photo : Karan Johar)

Tuesday, March 04, 2014

Libraries Targets High-School and High-Schools Target Library Education

Stephen Abram says: "Sounds like a great opportunity for library board / school board partnerships. Libraries are less stigmatizing environments for adult learners catching up on high school and e-learning is more flexible for workers than going to a local high school night class."
Two news stories about schools and libraries, one in US and the other in India make headlines. These headlines are not necessarily to say that the jobs of librarians will tend to improve, or that the image of profession has changed from books to classrooms. It is for the coming times to show what are the true colors of these headlines.

  • Career Online High School Pilot Program Begins March 3, 2014. "Los Angeles Public Library to Offer High School Diploma and Career Certificate Program in Partnership with Gale : This is a very important development for public libraries where they can offer high school accredited diplomas and credits to their patrons." Read more: Online Learning in Libraries Targets High-School Dropouts  / Literacy Council has lots to celebrate / Private Online School District Battles America's High School Dropout Crisis and Offers a Solution to Educational Trauma / Changing Lives & the Public Library: Career Online High School,  Library Journal / Career Online High School: Los Angeles Public Library / Career Online High School Get the Education and Career Skills You Need to Succeed
  • "The library hopes to grant high school diplomas to 150 adults in the first year at a cost to the library of $150,000, Szabo said. Many public libraries offer programs to prepare students and in some cases administer the General Educational Development test, which for decades was the brand name for the high school equivalency exam."
  • Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) introduces library and information science for grade XI and XII students, THE TIMES OF INDIA, Feb 13, 2014/ Now, learn all about libraries, The Hindu:
    "CBSE students may soon get to go to their school libraries not just during the designated hour, but also to understand the workings of classification, cataloguing, library-related technologies and library automation software, among other aspects."... According to a recent CBSE circular, the elective aims to develop basic understanding, theory and practical knowledge, and skill to pursue the subject for higher education and basic skills to work as a library semi-professional.   
    A. Amudavalli, professor and head, library and information sciences, University of Madras, says it is a viable and necessary career option. She says since it is an elective, it cannot be equivalent to a diploma, but it is a good move by the Board. “There is definitely more demand than there are people in this field,” she says. “Library science has changed drastically and, today, we work in a hybrid environment. Not only is there a demand for librarians, they are also well-paid,” she says, adding students of her department were placed well now.

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