Thursday, November 22, 2007

Names of schools

This is a snip "from the archives" printed in the latest edition of The Bulletin in which the former dean of my school explains that the school had changed name from Library Science to Library and Information Science "to reflect the importance of computers in the field". That was 25 years ago. Today we argue that our focus is on information practices that takes place beyond technology; and that the a better name for the field is, simply, information. And a better name for this sort of school is "Information School". I don't think that information is a particular good, smart, or descriptive word (or concept for that matter), but at least it doesn't have the science (or worse, studies) word attached... or depend on technology or particular institutions in its conceptualization. I believe we are on the way to establish schools that are large enough to focus on the breadth of the field, from various perspectives -- and focus on what is important to know and understand to function successfully in the information field.

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