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Changing Nature of the Journal

May 28, 2009

 

 

In short, the paper has become the nearly universal currency of the scholarly enterprise. As

a consequence, the members of the invisible colleges, the movers and shakers in every discipline
and subspecialty thereof must press not only his/her local library, but the libraries of
other institutions that might have some bearing upon his/her position to subscribe to and hold
those journals in which he/she defines and delimits his/her turf and portrays his/her excellence.
Despite its relative irrelevance to his/her information-gathering needs, which are better
served by other technologies, the journal is absolutely requisite to defining his/her place
in a discipline and confirming and validating his/her place in the invisible college.
Comment on the journal … once the central communication tool of a discipline, but with much better tools now available, its role for the scholar has changed: 
“In short, the paper has become the nearly universal currency of the scholarly enterprise. As a consequence, the members of the invisible colleges, the movers and shakers in every discipline and subspecialty thereof must press not only his/her local library, but the libraries of
other institutions that might have some bearing upon his/her position to subscribe to and hold those journals in which he/she defines and delimits his/her turf and portrays his/her excellence. Despite its relative irrelevance to his/her information-gathering needs, which are better served by other technologies, the journal is absolutely requisite to defining his/her place in a discipline and confirming and validating his/her place in the invisible college.”
“Invisible Colleges, Information and Libraries” … Richard Abel, at the Charleston Conference, 1990.
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