My Favourite Tipples from an online content developer
Wednesday, 23rd January 2019
My Favourite Tipples are shared by Kim Dority, president of Dority & Associates, Inc, a research and writing company specialising in online content development for major business-to-consumer website projects. She shares some of her top resources in fields of strategy and research.
As an online content developer for a wide range of projects and topics, I'm always trying to stay a bit ahead of emerging trends and their potential implications in as many areas as I can manage. So I gravitate to resources that either identify potential trends or provide meaning and context for them. I also do career advising with library and information science (LIS) students, new professionals and career transitioners, so I'm especially interested in trends that may affect information work. Some of my favourite starting points:
- Scientific American: In both print and digital form, this magazine covers so many interesting developments that there is almost always an article or two that has relevance to either a client project on which I'm working or to the expansive universe of information work. Although I usually start with the Sciences and Tech sections, I'm always most curious about what's going on in the Mind, Health, Sustainability and Education sections. The great thing about this type of somewhat-random content cruise is that it opens up your thinking to different frames and perspectives for issues you're otherwise likely to perceive only within your own familiar parameters.
- Center for the Future of Libraries: Created and led by the American Library Association's Miguel A. Figueroa, this site (and initiative) identifies "emerging trends relevant to libraries and the communities they serve", promotes "futuring and innovation techniques" that will help the profession shape its future, and builds "connections with experts and innovative thinkers to help libraries address emerging issues". As part of that process, Miquel curates news and developments from the broadest-possible range of sources, which makes it especially valuable for creating those "outside the profession" vantage points. The Trends topics are a terrific starting point.
- Harvard Business Review (HBR): HBR provides a deeper dive on (or a more nuanced exploration of) topics that apply universally to both the profit and non-profit worlds, so they have relevance for both corporate clients and LIS engagements. When teaching, I often use several HBR articles on leadership, management, soft skills, or career development as part of the learning experience. It helps students become comfortable learning from experts both within and outside of the profession, and to see their own work and skills as part of the broader world. In addition, I've found that sending a client CEO a recommendation for an HBR article I thought she'd enjoy really ups my credibility!
- Pew Research Center: Valuable for current, authoritative, and important research in multiple areas that impact library and information professionals (as well as many of our patrons and clients). It's a key resource for researchers seeking credible information on a wide range of societal issues and viewpoints at a time when our government sources are becoming less reliable or accessible.
- The Onion: Clever, irreverent riffs on current news headlines that provide just enough of a humour break to let you soldier on with the real stuff (on a good day)...
An article in Jinfo I found particularly interesting:
- Louise Brookes' "Setting and implementing strategy for an information centre" was especially useful and timely, as I'm preparing to teach a course in Special Librarianship and really appreciated the practitioner community's assessment of key challenges and ways to approach them. It's this type of real-life input, insight, and connection that makes Jinfo discussions so valuable for me.
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