Title

Social network analysis: A methodological approach for understanding public libraries and their communities

Publication Date

7-1-2020

Document Type

Article

Department

Information

Publication Title

Library and Information Science Research

Volume

42

Issue

3

DOI

10.1016/j.lisr.2020.101029

Abstract

Social network analysis (SNA) as theoretical framework and quantitatively oriented methodology offers public libraries and public library researchers an as-yet-unexplored way into their big data stories based on these library connections with their community. SNA offers library and information science researchers a methodology, and suggests a new research agenda, to better envision the relationships public libraries have with their communities both in-person and online by exploring the kinds of ties they have, how these ties lead to relationships, and how these relationships can be characterized. The quantitative orientation of SNA combined with its methods of data analysis in the forms of networks and hubs could give libraries the “hard” data they are so often in need of to demonstrate their value to their political leaders, and could uncover new directions in library use and library relationships.

Funding Number

430-2014-00746

Funding Sponsor

Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada

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