Virtual Research Environments: What do libraries have to do with it?

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The advent of Web2.0 technology has sparked the development of various new forms of interaction that are being increasingly used by students and researchers in universities. Beyond commercially hyped social networks, the development of Virtual Research Environments is taking place around the world. University libraries, like any other service provider, risk becoming increasingly irrelevant if they do not respond to changing user needs. In order to continue effectively supporting the research process, and to demonstrate the value a library adds to an academic institution, university libraries need to be aware of how Web 2.0 technologies are changing the ways that researchers’ carry out their work. Indications are that these new networks will become commonplace in the next few years, drastically affecting the way researchers work and communicate with each other. The development of these environments presents an opportunity and a challenge to libraries – how do we position our content and services so that we can continue in our mission of supporting the research process? This paper reviews current VRE projects, and data of academic use of technology, including web2.0 and multimedia, and identifies possible ways in which the modern library can use these new technologies in order to position library content and services within Virtual Research Environments.
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Di Muro, David
Saunders, Elizabeth
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UNSW Faculty
download VRE PAPER- FINAL.pdf 151.33 KB Adobe Portable Document Format
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