Bridging the Gap Between Research & Practice

In this article Haddow and Klobas identified eleven different factors that contribute to the growing gap between research and practice in the LIS field. Based on current literature this article identified and defined those eleven factors, the authors then went on to offer suggestions on how these gaps could be bridged. However, it recognised that there has not been enough research done on this topic in order to lessen these gaps. Thus, it has highlighted a research area that both practitioners and researchers could collaborate on.

One of the key issues raised at a recent LAI seminar organised by the Career Development Committee highlighted the need for a forum where practitioners could discuss research but it also acknowledged that access to research was a key issue for those not working in academic libraries. This blog will try to address these issues by regularly posting discussion questions related to current literature.

The Haddow and Klobas article failed to mention where students fall into this gap. Some become researchers others practitioners and as the job market becomes more competitive, some find it difficult to find work in the LIS field due to lack of opportunities or gaps in their skill set. The idea for this blog came about after reading a lot of literature for a MLIS assignment and realising that there was no avenue to discuss the research we did. It is hoped that this blog will act as a platform for postgraduate LIS students to discuss their research interests or individual articles that raised points that they agreed or disagreed with. By engaging with the wider LIS community in these discussions it is hoped that we can make a small contribution to reducing the gap at least between students and practitioners.

The question that we are raising here is what do you think could lessen the gap between students/recent graduates and practitioners?

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Haddow, G., & Klobas, J. E. (2004). Communication of research to practice in library and information science: Closing the gap. Library & Information Science Research, 26(1), 26-43.