Realising the value of RiLIES: presentation at QQML2012

This week the 4th International Conference on Qualitative and Quantitative Methods in Libraries takes place in Limerick, Republic of Ireland. We have two papers at the conference. The first, entitled “Realising the value of RiLIES: the Research in Librarianship Impact Evaluation Study”, is by Hazel Hall, Peter Cruickshank and Ella Taylor-Smith. The abstract and link to slides for the paper are given below.

Abstract: Realising the value of RiLIES: the Research in Librarianship Impact Evaluation Study

In 2011 researchers at Edinburgh Napier University, supported by the UK Library and Information Science Research Coalition, investigated the extent to which funded research projects in the domain of library and information science (LIS) influence practice in the UK. The Research in Librarianship Impact Evaluation Study (RiLIES) focused particularly on identifying factors that increase or hinder the impact of research findings on those who deliver library and information services.

This paper will present the main findings of the RiLIES project as derived from: (1) a review of the LIS literature on impact; (2) a practitioner poll; (3) case studies of five LIS research projects identified as “impactful”; (4) three sector-specific focus groups; and (5) a validation survey.

The findings highlight the evident disconnect between the LIS research and practitioner communities. They confirm that the level of impact that a research project enjoys depends on a number of factors, most importantly how it is planned and conceived, the extent to which practitioners are involved in its execution, and how its findings are reported. This work also demonstrates how organisational factors related to institutional and infrastructural support can engender receptive target audiences for research output.

The paper will offer new insight into the influence that research leadership and sponsorship, as well as choices related to the involvement of practitioners in research, play in the determination of research impact. In particular, these findings highlight a preference for face-to-face channels for the dissemination of research results that is greater than has been previously reported, and reveal the role of social media in raising awareness of research for the first time in work on this theme.

The presentation will be of particular interest to those keen to enhance the impact of their LIS research projects, and to practitioners who would like to become more engaged in LIS research.

Presentation slides

The slides for this presentation are available on SlideShare.

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