Glut of information, dearth of knowledge: a consideration of the information needs of practitioners identified during the FAME project

Pat Gannon-Leary

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Purpose: This paper emanates from work carried out in the learning and evaluation strand of the UK e-government initiative Framework for MultiAgency Environments (FAME) and focuses on a research question raised during research on the FAME project. When considering the best ways in which to disseminate the results of such initiatives, it became apparent that it would be useful to examine how the professionals and practitioners to be targeted currently accessed and used information. Design/methodology/approach : The paper combined a literature review with an analysis of data from a pre-implementation FAME questionnaire and a post-implementation questionnaire and analysis of data on attendance at project board meetings for the FAME strands. Findings : There are IT and training implications with respect to social care professionals' and practitioners' access to information. With respect to IT, there are issues of access and skills levels which may explain a preference displayed among the professionals and practitioners to derive information from colleagues rather than via information and communications technologies (ICTs). With respect to training, there are needs with regard to IT upskilling and, in addition, for those professionals and practitioners who have been in practice a number of years there is a need for updating of knowledge of developments such as evidence-based practice. Research limitations/implications : The research stemmed from another project (i.e. FAME) so the questionnaires were not tailored to answer fully the research question posed. However, analysis of FAME-generated data provides useful pointers for further exploration of the issues raised. Practical implications : There is an indication that further ICT training, more ICT resources and improved access are needed by many professionals and practitioners in a social care setting. Consideration should be given to means of delivering such training and to the provision of opportunities for continuous professional development to ensure that they are familiar with newer developments such as evidence-based practice. Originality/value : From the literature review this would appear to be an under-researched area. It is hoped that this work will provide a springboard for further research.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)120-131
JournalLibrary Review
Volume55
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2006

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