Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Data? We Got Data

Recently, we (this is the royal "we") received the results of a survey that Harris Interactive conducted on behalf of OCLC. You may recall that Harris conducted the survey in 2002 that resulted in the OCLC White Paper On the Information Habits of College Students [pdf].

The main purpose of this 2005 study is to evaluate people's awareness, usage and perceptions of e-resources, as well as their awareness, usage and perceptions of libraries and library resources in general. This time, we (a slightly less royal "we" as I was of many OCLC staff involved in determining from whom and what we wanted to know) asked Harris to expand the survey group beyond the United States and beyond the 18-24 demographic that was covered in the earlier report. The populations surveyed this time covered people 14 to over 65, in the US, Canada, the UK, Singapore, India and Australia who use the Internet.

I've scanned the results and can say that there are surprising results and expected ones, depressing results and uplifting ones, but it's definitely all interesting. And that's about all I can say right now...OCLC staff are pouring over the results, trying to decide how to present the huge amount of data and information in ways that are helpful and informative.

I do know that we will be writing some reports and releasing data relevant to the reports, so you'll be hearing about this survey for a long time to come!


Anonymous said...

Let me guess: nobody has a clue libraries offer what they offer... kgs

Alane said...

Well, that would fall into the "depressing and not surprising" category, wouldn't it?