Newsletter Archive

Newsletter No.114


« Previous Newsletter Feed Next Newsletter »


                             Free Pint
         "Helping 50,000 people use the Web for their work"
                     http://www.freepint.com/

ISSN 1460-7239                                  13th June 2002 No.114
> = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =

                           IN THIS ISSUE

                             EDITORIAL

                       MY FAVOURITE TIPPLES
                      From Elizabeth Berman

                    FREE PINT BAR & STUDENT BAR
                    In Association with Factiva
                   a Dow Jones & Reuters Company
                     Reviewed by Simon Collery

                                JOBS
                   European Information Officer
                         Junior Researcher
                    Current Awareness Librarian

                           TIPS ARTICLE
                   "Web Site Usability Resources"
                          By Tim Houghton

                             BOOKSHELF
                "Super Searchers Go To The Source"
                      Reviewed by Helen Clegg

                          FEATURE ARTICLE
           "War & Peace, Famine & Disaster - Finding Work
                   in International Development"
                          By Darren Jones

               EVENTS, GOLD AND FORTHCOMING ARTICLES

                        CONTACT INFORMATION

             ONLINE VERSION WITH ACTIVATED HYPERLINKS
            <http://www.freepint.com/issues/130602.htm>

         ADOBE ACROBAT VERSION WITH NEWSLETTER FORMATTING
            <http://www.freepint.com/issues/130602.pdf>


> = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =
> = = = = = = = = = = = = = ADVERTISEMENT = = = = = = = = = = = = = =


         Online Information 2002: the world's no. 1 event
         for information content, management and delivery.

               3-5 December 2002, Olympia, London UK

                          More details at
     http://www.online-information.co.uk/online/conference.asp
           >> Request your conference programme today! <<

> = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = [li1141]
> = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =


                      >>>  ABOUT FREE PINT  <<<

Free Pint is an online community of information researchers. Members
receive this free newsletter every two weeks packed with tips on
finding quality and reliable business information on the Internet.

Joining is free at <http://www.freepint.com/> and provides access to
the substantial archive of articles, book reviews, jobs, industry news
& events, with answers to your research questions and networking at
the Free Pint Bar. Pay to upgrade your membership and also receive the
weekly Free Pint Pub Crawl current awareness newsletter.

Please circulate this newsletter which is best read when printed out.
To receive the Adobe Acrobat version as an attachment or a brief
notification when it's online, visit <http://www.freepint.com/member>.

> = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =


                             EDITORIAL

What a celebratory month June is turning out to be. 

I'm not referring to The Queen's 50th Jubilee festivities, the World
Cup, or even the number of bank holidays we've enjoyed recently.

What I am talking about is the fact that we've just welcomed the
50,000th member to the Free Pint community. Marga Dolk is a Library
Manager at Corus Technology in the Netherlands and we've sent her
a pack of Free Pint goodies to celebrate.

You might expect Free Pint's growth rate to start slowing, but it's
actually speeding up. Last month we welcomed 1,500 new subscribers
and 80% come through personal word-of-mouth recommendation.

We're also celebrating a 'Golden Candle Award' from the Open Source
Intelligence (OSINT) movement for being "... at the forefront of
peer-to-peer computing" <http://www.freepint.com/press>.

I couldn't pick up the award myself at the recent OSINT conference in
Virginia (since I was speaking elsewhere), so it was a treat to
receive it over a lunch this week at the Metropolitan Police's HQ at
Scotland Yard. There's some great people and interesting developments
in OSINT at the moment and so I'd urge you to check it out.

So, with all these celebrations, that's why I think "June Is
Bustin' Out All Over"!

Back to today, and we bring you articles on site usability
resources, international development, and the usual mix of tips and
reviews.

News of our second Free Pint Content Management Exchange seminar
spread quickly, and that is now full. Do check out our events on
effective email newsletter publishing and developing a global Intranet
which are also filling up nicely <http://www.freepint.com/exchange>.

I hope you're enjoying June as much as we are, and do keep spreading
the word about Free Pint. Let's see how quickly we can sign up another
50,000 members and help them find great information resources on the
Web too.

Cheers
William

             William Hann, Founder and Managing Editor
      Email: <william@freepint.com>   Tel: +44 (0)1784 420044
Free Pint is a Registered Trademark of Free Pint Limited (c) 1997-2002

> = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =
> = = = = = = = = = = = = = ADVERTISEMENT = = = = = = = = = = = = = =


            Targeted Science and Engineering Information
Nerac delivers hard-to-find information from worldwide resources
within the next business day. Our search experts locate information on
published literature, patents, trademarks and advancements in science
and technology. Our resources provide targeted results that save you
time and money. To learn more, visit our Web site at www.nerac.com,
call 860-872-7000 (U.S.), from 7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. ET to speak
directly with a Nerac representative or e-mail us at info@nerac.com.

> = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = [ne1142]


         >>>  EMAIL PUBLISHING EXCHANGE - WEST LONDON  <<<
                <http://www.freepint.com/exchange>

    Find out about the issues involved in producing a successful
       email publication. Two seminars in July will look at
            finance, content, technology and staffing.

  The presenter is Free Pint's William Hann and space is limited.
Find out more and book your place: <http://www.freepint.com/exchange>

> = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = 


                       MY FAVOURITE TIPPLES
                      From Elizabeth Berman

* esp@cenet <http://gb.espacenet.com/> - Gateway to patents search
  engine that finds European, US and Japanese patent applications
  using one search form.  Images of patents available in pdf format.

* The International Nomenclature of Cosmetic Ingredients 
  <http://dg3.eudra.org/F3/home.html> - Index of cosmetic ingredients
  searchable by EINECS number, CAS number or chemical name. Tables
  provide designation numbers, use and more detailed chemical names.


* Doctor's Guide <http://www.docguide.com/> - Source for medical news,
  webcasts and recent journal articles on diseases or specialties.
  Also has lists of recently approved drugs, upcoming medical
  congresses and Medline access.

* disABILITY Information and Resources <http://www.makoa.org/> -
  Extensive list of disability links sorted by category.  These
  include medical information, support groups, politics, resources and
  shopping.

* Recipe Source <http://www.recipesource.com/> - Massive database of
  recipes searchable by region (area of the world) or by type (main
  dish, soup, holidays, etc.)

Elizabeth Berman is the principal for Informed Source. She provides
information retrieval and analysis for the Pharmaceutical, Medical and
Consumer Products industries.

Email your top five favourite Web sites to <simon@freepint.com> or
see the guidelines at <http://www.freepint.com/author.htm>.

> = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = 
> = = = = = = = = = = = = = ADVERTISEMENT = = = = = = = = = = = = = =


              Factiva Launches 2002 White Paper Series

Factiva launches its 2002 White Paper Series with a new report
on the value of information tools.  Free, Fee-Based and Value-Added
Information Services considers the quality, availability and value
of information on free Web sites, fee-based Web sites
and value-added information services. To learn more visit:
http://factiva.com/collateral/files/whitepaper_feevsfree_032002.pdf

> = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = [fa1143]
> = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =


       >>>  INTRANET PUBLISHING EXCHANGE - WEST LONDON  <<<
                <http://www.freepint.com/exchange>

    The Economist Intelligence Unit's Paul Pedley will share his
 experiences of developing an intranet for a global organisation.
       Topics covered include planning, content management,
         taxonomy and how to encourage knowledge sharing.

Places are limited. Find out more: <http://www.freepint.com/exchange>

> = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = 


                           FREE PINT BAR
                    In Association with Factiva
                   a Dow Jones & Reuters Company
                           
                     Reviewed by Simon Collery
          <http://www.freepint.com/issues/130602.htm#bar>


Free Pint Bar <http://www.freepint.com/bar>
-------------------------------------------

   [Note: To read a Bar posting enter the message number in place
    of XXXXX in the address http://www.freepint.com/go/bXXXXX ]

We've had a call in the Bar for information professionals who use
database providers to say what they like and dislike about the
services they receive (18160). Someone has kicked off the discussion
by asking to what extent information scientists are involved in the
creation of these resources or is their development mainly driven by
IT people.

There's also a number of research questions that have not received
any answer yet. They were about PC sales data for 2001 (18001), free
business-to-business research sites (17967), resources that list
forthcoming events, anniversaries, etc., (18082), information
management strategies (18075) and international company directories
(18169).

Other unanswered queries were about verifying non-UK police checks
(18099), finding a list of medium sized media buyers (18067), sample
quality standards documents and how to provide a risk checking
service (18161), reports on the European home furniture market
(18146) and examples of companies that have narrowed or changed their
original market focus (18153).

Postings about sales of psychometric tests (17934), protection for
company and domain names (17964), UK Web sites that are of
significant size (18029), directories of UK community groups (17959),
the availability of educational DVD products in the arts and
humanities (18084) and the location of a certain obituary (17976) are
in need of answers too, if you happen to know about such things.

There were resources recommended and suggested covering international
address data (17953), UK library provisions for students with
disabilities (17928), specifications and legal requirements for gas
supplies in the food processing industry (18004), the occupations of
engineering graduates (18083) and sources of European election result
news (18139).

We've also heard about sources of non-US social security sites
(18063), invisible Web resources (17972), some useful bookmarklets
(17966) and the latest issue of the Internet Resources Newsletter,
for those who like to keep up with new and recently updated sites
(18053). Tipples in the last few weeks included some handy global
data sites (18142) and a site that should help you if you are
fighting spam (18070).

The latest techie questions have been about the Hydra program
management software and people's experiences of it (17992), UDP
datagrams and what they are (17979), examples of effectively mixed
design and accessibility on Web sites (17958), adding sound to sites
(18126), finding lost emails on Outlook Express 5 (18081), saving and
keeping track of Web pages (18124), undisclosed recipient problems
(18016) and mapping people's movements around a site (18008).

There have been miscellaneous postings about locating a quotation
(18032), locating a quotation source (18058), locating an author's
Web site (17935), identifying the status of Wales (18009), finding
the name of a ship (18031), working in Saudi Arabia (17927), finding
a distance course in information science (18100), establishing the
origin of BC (18047), advice on setting up a sales consultancy
(17987) and purchasing a cheap phone redirection service (18093).

   [Note: To read a Bar posting enter the message number in place
    of XXXXX in the address http://www.freepint.com/go/bXXXXX ]


Free Pint Student Bar <http://www.freepint.com/student>
-------------------------------------------------------

  [Note: To read a Student Bar posting enter the message number in
  place of XXXX in the address <http://www.freepint.com/go/sXXXX>]

In the Student Bar there have been queries about people's experiences
of pre library school training (2525) and Internet connectivity in
European public libraries (2524).

  [Note: To read a Student Bar posting enter the message number in
  place of XXXX in the address <http://www.freepint.com/go/sXXXX>]

      Simon Collery, Content Developer <simon@freepint.com>

If you have a tricky research question or can help other Free Pinters
then do post a message at the Bar <http://www.freepint.com/bar> or
the Student Bar <http://www.freepint.com/student>.

To have the latest Bar postings sent to you every other day, log in to
your account online at <http://www.freepint.com/member>.

> = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = 
> = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =


              >>>  FREE PINT PUB CRAWL FREE TRIAL  <<<

We're sure you've heard about the Pub Crawl monitoring vast numbers
   of information-related publication sites in its weekly update.

      To find out what all the fuss is about, take out a trial
              or purchase an annual subscription at:
                <http://www.freepint.com/pubcrawl>

> = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = 


                           FREE PINT JOBS
                   <http://www.freepint.com/jobs>

As well as the selected listings below, check out the weekly Bar
postings which list the latest additions to Free Pint Jobs.
This week's can be found at <http://www.freepint.com/go/b18159>
and last week's at <http://www.freepint.com/go/b18049>.

Here are some of the latest featured jobs:

European Information Officer <http://www.freepint.com/go/j1826>
  Information Officer with second European Language. Central London.
  Provide information on EU issues. 19,000 GBP.
  Recruiter: Glen Recruitment

Junior Researcher <http://www.freepint.com/go/j1841>
  Excellent opportunity for recent graduate in professional services
  company. Learn about knowledge store of a multinational corporate.
  Recruiter: Recruit Media

Current Awareness Librarian <http://www.freepint.com/go/j1843>
  Develop a current awareness service in a busy law firm - part of a
  team of 13 - and undertake extensive research enquiry work.
  Recruiter: Sue Hill Recruitment

                [The above jobs are paid listings]

Free Pint Jobs is a great place for finding and advertising
information-related vacancies.

Candidates can search the database for free, and set up a profile to
be notified weekly of relevant new vacancies.

Advertisers will receive significant publicity for listed vacancies,
and jobs will be matched against the 500+ stored job seeker profiles.

       Find out more today at <http://www.freepint.com/jobs>

> = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =
> = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =


            >>>  EMAIL LIST HOSTING THE RIGHT WAY  <<<

   Whatever your experience of using third party hosts for email
      newsletter distribution, check out Free Pint's service.

    It's customisable, affordable, intuitive, and can easily be
   integrated into your site for seamless subscriber management.
    Read all about it today at: <http://www.freepint.com/bulk>

> = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = 


                           TIPS ARTICLE
         <http://www.freepint.com/issues/130602.htm#tips>

                   "Web Site Usability Resources"
                          By Tim Houghton

Introduction
------------

"To be usable, an interface must let the people who use the product,
working in their own physical, social, and cultural environments,
accomplish their goals and tasks effectively and efficiently" - Tom
Farrell.

Web site usability is the practice of creating web sites that are easy
to use. Often also termed user-centric design. It sounds obvious but
in fact it has taken 'usability' several years to climb steadily but
inexorably up the agendas of those who commission, design and maintain
web sites.

This article does not attempt to offer usability tips, or advise on
how to run usability tests; instead it provides links to information
for those interested in this topic whether they are researchers,
designers or web site owners. It is pitched at an elementary level and
so will probably be most useful to those who are new to the subject.


Where to Start?
---------------

OK, so where to start? Well ironically, switching off your screen and
curling up with a good book may be the best way forward. Whilst the
web is a wonderful resource for digging up information and linking
disparate sources, it is often not the best medium for the development
of a linear argument and the understanding of basic principles.

My suggestions for introductory texts are:

Jakob Nielsen - 'Designing Web Usability: The Practice of Simplicity'.
This book came out in 2000 and in total has now sold over 250,000
copies. Jakob is probably the best known usability guru and whilst
there may be parts of his advice with which you may strongly disagree
(are splash screens really always bad?) the book is an excellent
introduction that has stood the test of time. For a useful precis of
the book's main points see this Web Reference article which came out
in 2000 <http://www.webreference.com/new/nielsen.html>.

In a slightly lighter vain, 'Don't Make Me Think!' by Steve Krug is a
useful book that entertains whilst it informs. Again it sets out
principles for usability rather than going too deeply into the How
To's of HTML coding.

'The Art and Science of Web Design' by Jeffrey Veen adopts a more
creative/design driven approach to the issue of usability (he used to
run HotWired.com) providing a counterpoint to the more
engineering/science driven approach adopted by Jakob. The tension
between art and science, or form and function is one that runs through
much of the usability debate.


Usability News
--------------

Having understood the fundamentals of building user-centric web sites
you can then keep up with the latest issues via some or all of the
following:

Usability News <http://www.usabilitynews.com> Does what the URL says!
Well written articles plus events and jobs from a UK based team. There
is an e-mail newsletter also.

Useit.com <http://useit.com> Jakob Nielsen's personal site which
contains links to other articles he has written plus his bi-weekly
'Alertbox' column. You'll notice several other sites in this article
are in a very similar style to this one as this is effectively his
'template'.

FrontEnd Infocentre
<http://infocentre.frontend.com/servlet/Infocentre> A good selection
of articles maintained by the interface design specialists FrontEnd.

Tomalak's Realm <http://www.tomalak.org/> Looks very like Useit.com.
It contains summaries and links to articles concerning strategic web
design issues, many of which address site usability.

Bohmann Usability <http://www.bohmann.dk> Collection of articles
(mostly) about usability from Kristoffer Bohmann, a Danish consultant.
Some are rather short but he's not a fence sitter so they can be
stimulating.

UsableWeb <http://usableweb.com> A usability portal rather than a news
site. It hasn't been updated much in 2002 but there are still an awful
lot of good links on here. It covers 'information architecture' also,
a close relation (some would say a sub-set) of usability.


DIY Usability and HTML Standards
--------------------------------

Having cracked the jargon and got up to speed on what's happening in
the industry you may feel its time to start improving your own site.
The best way to do so is to use actual usability testing. In other
words observe users interacting with your site and then incorporate
their feedback into your design. However, this can be expensive and
difficult for the inexperienced. A cheaper way is to evaluate the site
yourself against a set of principles (culled from the sources above)
and to test the HTML code against recognised standards.

HTML standards are an important branch of usability as they try to
ensure consistency across the web. Just think of trying to drive a car
with the accelerator and the brake transposed. The most important
standards are probably those developed by the WorldWideWeb Consortium
<http://www.w3.org> (founded by Tim Berners-Lee in 1994).

You may also see references to Section 508 standards. This is a US law
that requires all United States Federal Agencies with websites to make
them accessible to individuals with disabilities. Many US corporations
have also applied them to at least part of their sites. There is also
a strong ethical argument for not closing off sites to those with
disabilities.

Tools to test HTML code are widely available on the web, they include:

W3Schools <http://www.w3schools.com/site/site_validate.asp> A free
HTML validator, it checks compliance with W3C standards.

Web Tools <http://zing.ncsl.nist.gov/WebTools/index.html> These tools
have been around for a while but there are a series of useful
downloadable applications.

Usablenet <http://www.usablenet.com> Submit a URL and test up to 5
pages of your site free. The software automates some of the more
technical aspects of usability, for example checking HTML code
complies with W3C standards.

Bobby <http://www.cast.org/bobby> Another page checking utility.

Net Raker <http://www.netraker.com> Slightly different from the above
in that the site provides online tools to support human usability
testing, for example facilitating user feedback, (a sort of virtual
usability lab).

Yale Web Style Guide <http://www.med.yale.edu/caim/manual/index.html>
A site from Yale University that offers detailed 'How To' guides to
implementing easy to use web sites.


Get External Help
-----------------

For those with larger sites and greater resources it may be worth
bringing in an external professional. Two big names in this niche are:

Nielsen Norman Group <http://www.nngroup.com> Its three principles
Bruce Tognazzini, Don Norman and Jakob Nielsen are all noted speakers
in the field.

Adaptive Path <http://www.adaptivepath.com> Jeffrey Veen's consulting
arm.

For those looking for less well known firms or individuals the
following professional bodies may also be useful.

Usability Professionals Association <http://www.upassoc.org>, the US/
global site for the association. It includes a consultant directory.

UPA UK <http://www.lboro.ac.uk/research/husat/ukupa/index.html>, its
UK arm.


Events & Education
------------------

To deepen your understanding of the subject there are a growing number
of conferences and seminars and it is achieving greater prominence
within web design courses. Links to event listings include:

Tomalak's Realm <http://www.tomalak.org/conference.html> US plus a few
international events here.

Usability News <http://www.usabilitynews.com/default.asp?c=3> UK, US
and European events.

British Human Computer Interaction (HCI) Group
<http://www.bcs-hci.org.uk> UK events are listed on the right of the
home page.

Usability Professionals' Association
<http://www.lboro.ac.uk/research/husat/ukupa/diary.htm>
Diary of events for the UK chapter of the UPA.


Anti-Usability
--------------

There is a section of the web design community that hates usability
professionals. They feel that they prescribe too many rules leading to
dull and uncreative sites (we're back to form versus function again).
Here are three links that put the other side of the case in polemical
fashion.
<http://www.youzit.com>
<http://www.alistapart.com/stories/bluegreen/bluegreen_1.html>
<http://www.alistapart.com/stories/sympathy/index.html>

Finally, maybe the easiest way to learn how to create highly usable
web sites is to look at ones that aren't!

Web Pages That Suck <http://www.webpagesthatsuck.com/home.html> Just
hope your own site never makes it into the hall of fame.

I hope the above links make for stimulating clicking and a lively
follow-up in the Free Pint Bar.

> - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Tim Houghton is a director of Parallel54; a research firm that
specialises in monitoring web site content and enhancing web site
usability. He has been an avid, though sometimes frustrated web user
since 1995. Tim is also currently developing educational material for
a taught module on web usability.

> - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Related Free Pint links:

* "Internet Webmaster" articles and resources in the Free Pint Portal
  <http://www.freepint.com/go/p183>
* Post a message to the author, Tim Houghton, or suggest further 
  resources, at the Bar <http://www.freepint.com/bar>
* Read this article online, with activated hyperlinks
  <http://www.freepint.com/issues/130602.htm#tips>
* Access the entire archive of Free Pint articles and issues
  <http://www.freepint.com/portal/content/>

> = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =


      >>>  VIRTUAL ACQUISITION SHELF AND NEWS DESK MOVED  <<<
                http://resourceshelf.freepint.com/

         Gary Price's invaluable daily resourceshelf blog
          has now officially moved to the Free Pint site.

  This free service is updated throughout the day with the latest
  news and Web resources of interest to researchers, and there's
    even a free weekly email 'Update' with the latest additions.

> = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = 


                        FREE PINT BOOKSHELF
                <http://www.freepint.com/bookshelf>

                "Super Searchers Go To The Source"
            Written by Risa Sacks, Reva Basch (Editor)
                      Reviewed by Helen Clegg

The latest offering from the Super Searchers series, this book aims to
illustrate that by going straight to the source, serious researchers
can gain very valuable information, which just isn't available from
secondary, published sources.

Going straight to the source involves telephone research, face-to-face
interviewing, direct observation and checking public records.  Primary
research skills don't seem to be taught much and many people are
scared of using them because they haven't had much practice.  The
benefits, however, can be extremely worthwhile.  A telephone interview
could confirm a market trend or a company strategy or a face-to-face
interview might give you that extra piece of information that makes
your research stand out from the crowd.

This book is invaluable for researchers needing to learn more about
the different primary research techniques. It's broadly divided into
four sections covering primary research, interview skills, competitive
intelligence, private investigation and public records, and primary
research for journalists.  Each of the twelve chapters takes the form
of an interview between Risa Sacks and a practitioner, which makes for
really easy reading and absorption of the material - it's just like
sitting in on a conversation. The practitioners have an interesting
mix of backgrounds and practice in a wide range of environments, so
there's an incredible amount of experience captured in the book.
You'll pick up tips and tricks from a freelance health-care futurist,
a self-employed private investigator, a competitive intelligence
specialist, a researcher in a large corporation, a telephone
researcher and a New York Times reporter. For example, when asked if
she uses discussion groups or email lists, Robyn Yarmovsky responds
that she keeps tabs on Buslib-L, Web4Lib and the Free Pint Bar!

Key take-aways are summarized at the end of each interview, there's a
useful appendix of referenced sites and sources and the book has a
comprehensive index - all of which help make the book a useful
reference tool to have to hand.

One point to note is that the book is very US-oriented.  All but two
of the twelve practitioners are based in the States and their
experiences reflect their location. So if you are based in another
country, it is very likely that some of the techniques recommended
won't work, due to cultural differences.  This is emphasised in the
interview with Andrew Pollard, a UK-based competitor intelligence
practitioner, who comments, "The American culture is much more open
and willing to talk.  Not in all cases, but you can get much more
information from the phone ... It's much more difficult on the
Continent.  They will want to know who you are, where you come from,
why you want to know and more.  They won't talk much, in fact, they'll
often put the phone down."  And he continues, "No company that wants
to get information out of a French national should ever use anything
other than a French national."

The interviews with practitioners using public records as primary
sources are also of limited use to researchers based outside the
United States, primarily because of unfamiliarity with the sources
mentioned, but also because public records resources differ greatly
from country to country.

Despite it's US bias, this book is still worth reading if you want to
increase your knowledge of interviewing techniques and discover how
going straight to the source can improve your research results. It
opens your mind to thinking about the benefits of primary research and
makes you wonder why the subject isn't given more prominence on
library and information management courses today.

> - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Helen Clegg is Market Analyst with R.R. Donnelley Europe in Amsterdam.
She holds a B.A. Honours in French & German and an M.Sc. in Library
and Information Studies.  Helen is a frequent contributor to Free Pint
and has also written for the US Online magazine.  Helen can be
contacted at <Helen.Clegg@rrd.com>.

> - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Related Free Pint links:

* Find out more about this book online at the Free Pint Bookshelf
  <http://www.freepint.com/bookshelf/source.htm>
* Read customer comments and buy this book at Amazon.co.uk
  <http://www.amazon.co.uk/exec/obidos/ASIN/0910965536/freepint0c>
  or Amazon.com
  <http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0910965536/freepint00>
* "Super Searchers Go To The Source" ISBN 0910965536 published by
  Cyberage Books written by Risa Sacks, Reva Basch (Editor)
* Search for and purchase any book from Amazon via the Free Pint
  Bookshelf at <http://www.freepint.com/bookshelf>
* Read about other Internet marketing books on the Free Pint Bookshelf
  <http://www.freepint.com/bookshelf/marketing.htm>

To propose an information-related book for review, send details 
to <bookshelf@freepint.com>.

> = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =


         >>>  BUSINESS INFORMATION PRODUCT AWARENESS  <<<

            If you're trying to raise awareness of your
        information-related product or service then there's
         no better way than by advertising with Free Pint.

                 Find out more about the benefits:
               <http://www.freepint.com/advert.htm>

> = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =


                          FEATURE ARTICLE
        <http://www.freepint.com/issues/130602.htm#feature>

           "War & Peace, Famine & Disaster - Finding Work
                   in International Development"
                          By Darren Jones

A job in international development, working to resolve problems caused
by poverty, inequality, conflict and natural disasters throughout the
world, is attractive to many people. For some it is a career choice,
offering a great deal of personal satisfaction although with no
defined career path. Others may choose to volunteer their services as
part of a career break, to gain valuable experience before starting
more lucrative work, or just because they want to help. Work may be in
the field, or from your home country. For careerists, volunteering may
be necessary to gain the experience required to get onto the first
rung. Volunteers may find themselves transported into a new career.

Whatever your motivation, and destination, there is a vast quantity of
information on the Internet for anyone interested in this line of
work. An article such as this cannot claim to be comprehensive, but
hopes to give an overview of some major sources of advice and
information available on the Web.


Getting Started
---------------

Read one, or all, of these to decide whether development work is for
you and to give you a broad idea of the available options:

World Service Enquiry 2002 Guide <http://www.wse.org.uk/Guidetext.htm>
World Service Enquiry is the information and advice service of
Christians Abroad. It produces an annual guide, which includes a
directory of development agencies (both secular and religious). This
web version does not include the directory, but does give a very good
overview of how to get involved in development work. As such, it
ranges from thinking about your own lifestyle, to volunteering and
getting skilled/unskilled work overseas.


Thinking of Volunteering
<http://www.comhlamh.org/thinkvol/issueopt.html> Comhlamh is a
voluntary organisation set up by returned Irish development workers.
This is an excellent introduction to the various issues and options
open to anyone wishing to work in international development. It is
particularly good for general issues to consider, including the
negative aspects of international interventions (aid work as the new
colonialism, for example).


Working in International Development
<http://www.sussex.ac.uk/Units/CDU/intdev.html> Produced by the Career
Development & Employment Centre at the University of Sussex, this is a
great introduction to the variety of entry points into development
work. It has particular relevance to current students/recent
graduates, but can be used by anyone wishing to enter the field.


General Information
-------------------

Having decided that development work is for you, it is essential to
keep abreast of what's going on in the field:

AlertNet <http://www.alertnet.org> Produced by Reuters, this contains
extensive news coverage, as well as country profiles and jobs
information.

Eldis <http://www.eldis.org> Hosted by the Institute of Development
Studies at the University of Sussex, this provides an excellent
gateway to development information. There are country profiles,
resource guides on specific topics and links to loads of job sites.

ReliefWeb <http://www.reliefweb.int> A project of the UN Office for
the Co-ordination of Humanitarian Affairs, this site offers a
directory of organisations and vacancy listings. There are also
sections on natural disasters and complex emergencies.


Education
---------

If you are looking for short-term, voluntary positions, then specific
qualifications may well not be required. Some sort of training could
even be provided by the placement organisation before your project
begins. To establish a career in development, however, you will almost
certainly need a professional qualification or relevant degree plus a
number of years work experience.

A list of Development Studies courses in Britain is available at
<http://www.ids.ac.uk/courses/cou_inst.html> for those who would like
to gain an academic grounding in the issues involved. For some,
though, it might be beneficial to train in your chosen profession
first, and then get some experience, before undertaking more
specialist study.


Using your skills/qualifications
--------------------------------

Practical, on-the-job work experience is highly valued by development
agencies, and may count for more on particular projects where specific
skills are required. Free Pinters might like to know that information
managers/librarians may be needed by any number of organisations.
Approach the ones that interest you most (for geographical or ethical
reasons), or try an agency:

Voluntary Service Overseas (VSO) <http://www.vso.org.uk> A search on
its database produced details of the following recent positions: a
librarian at Kandy General Hospital in Sri Lanka; a Research Assistant
for the Department of State for Education in the Gambia; and an Open
Learning Network Co-ordinator for the Community Library Services of
Namibia.

Peace Corps <http://www.peacecorps.gov> For US citizens only, it
provided opportunities for the founding members of the World Library
Partnership. Offers two-year assignments.

World Library Partnership <http://www.worldlibraries.org> An American
non-profit that supports sustainable, community-based libraries in
developing countries. It offers a one-month volunteer programme in
South Africa and Honduras that is not restricted to US citizens.

In addition, both the VSO and Peace Corps offer opportunities for
business, health, IT, teaching and environment specialists. Other such
organisations with possible openings for people with professional
qualifications include:

RedR <http://www.redr.org> With bases in Australia, England, New
Zealand and Canada, it selects and trains personnel for relief
agencies. The emphasis is on engineering and technical specialisms and
you can apply to join its relief register.

APSO <http://www.apso.ie> Irish government agency. Operates a Rapid
Response Register for people who are available at short notice. Must
be an EU National.

Skillshare International <http://www.skillshare.org> Working with
partner organisations in Africa and Asia, it provides them with
professionals to satisfy specific needs. Current positions include
architect, financial advisor, business manager and English teacher.

Mango <http://www.mango.org.uk> A UK charity that provides management
accounting for NGOs. Accountants (and other finance professionals) can
register to work on short-term assignments overseas.


Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs)
-------------------------------------

NGOs are the non-profit, volunteer groups that operate in much of the
developing world. They are often formed around specific issues, and
may perform humanitarian aid, monitoring and advocacy roles. Many now
receive significant funding from their own national governments, and
are a major employer of development workers/volunteers.

Skills and experience will again be paramount, as many NGOs will not
be able to offer a great deal of training. However, a number now
offer internships (often unpaid) which allow less experienced entrants
to gain the know-how they require to establish a career path in
development work. These may well be in your home country, or another
western country, and are often advertised on the NGO's own website.
Search for suitable organisations on the following sites:

BOND <http://www.bond.org.uk> Network of more than 260 UK based
voluntary organisations working in international development. Includes
a database of members and NGO networks.

OneWorld  Internet community of over 1000
international organisations working for human rights and sustainable
development worldwide. Huge site that contains a directory of members,
extensive news coverage and jobs.

Directory of Development Organisations <http://www.devdir.org>
Searchable directory (by geographical region) of over 25,000
Organisations (including NGOs, research bodies, governments and
private institutions).


United Nations, Intergovernmental Organisations and Government
--------------------------------------------------------------

The United Nations <http://www.un.org> is somewhat of a holy grail for
many people looking for a long-term career in development work. Entry
is extremely competitive, with postgraduate study and work experience
being almost a prerequisite for all vacancy, internship and volunteer
opportunities. In addition, there are a number of intergovernmental
organisations (such as the World Bank and World Health Organisation).
These are autonomous bodies, but are linked to the UN through co-
operative agreements. Most offer internships on a competitive basis.
Individual governments may also offer opportunities for graduates to
cut their teeth in development work. Here are some key websites to
look at:

United Nations Volunteers <http://www.unv.org> Strictly for
professionals with at least five years' experience, there are now over
5000 people each year operating in the developing world. Search for
vacancies on the website.

Junior Professional Officer Scheme <http://www.jposc.org> For young
professionals (generally under 32), sponsored by their respective
participating governments. The site also contains a very useful guide
for postgraduate students, recent graduates and young professionals
hoping to make a career in the UN. It's a 78 page pdf file and is
available at <http://www.jposc.org/documents/Guide_to_a_UN_career.pdf>.

UN Personnel Officers
<http://accsubs.unsystem.org/ccaqper/general/contactinfo.htm> Making
personal contact is often the best approach to take when looking for
internships. In such a Byzantine organisation as the UN, however,
knowing with whom to get in touch is extremely difficult. This site
might enable you to create your own employment opportunities.

Internship & Traineeship links to International Organisations
<http://missions.itu.int/~italy/vacancies/internsmain.htm> Provided by
the Permanent Mission of Italy to International Organisations in
Geneva. Ignore the page design, this is a great site for finding UN
and Intergovernmental internships in one place.

DFID <http://www.dfid.gov.uk> UK Government Department for
International Development. Operates an Associate Professional Officer
Scheme (APOS) for recent graduates, of whom about 40 are taken on each
year. Find out more at
<http://www.dfid.gov.uk/Recruitment/files/APOS.pdf>

USAID <http://www.usaid.gov> United States Agency for International
Development with a New Entry Professional Program for US citizens.
More information at <http://www.usaid.gov/about/employment/nepbro.htm>


Development Jobs sites
----------------------

Vacancies are advertised in a number of ways, including websites
already mentioned, but here are some specialist sites worth
bookmarking:

Idealist.org <http://www.idealist.org> Action Without Borders website
that has jobs, volunteer opportunities and internships in 153
countries. Search for library/resource centre positions in each
category. Excellent site that also includes a careers advice section.

DevNetJobs.org <http://www.devnetjobs.org> Hundreds of jobs advertised
each month. Register for free email service.

Devjobs <http://www.devjobsmail.com> Reaches over 22,000 people
worldwide. Join the mailing list for regular updates.

Dev-Zone Development Jobs <http://www.drc.org.nz/jobs/> Jobs are
organised by specialism, and there is a section for Information
Services. Register for weekly employment email updates.

Opportunities Abroad <http://www.wse.org.uk/vacsearch.htm> Published
monthly by the World Service Enquiry, you can now search by job
category or country.


Conflict Resolution
-------------------

This is becoming an increasingly popular area to get into,
particularly following September 11th and recent developments in the
Middle East. If you want to look for jobs and organisations working in
this area, here are some sites to get you started:

Conflict Resolution Information Source <http://www.crinfo.org> From
the University of Colorado, this is a really comprehensive site.
Covering news, tools for practitioners, directories of organisations,
education and jobs/careers, it's a great starting point.

Coexistence Initiative <http://www.co-net.org> The Resource Center is
particularly good on this US site, with great career links.

INCORE <http://www.incore.ulst.ac.uk> Institute for Conflict
Resolution at the University of Ulster. The site has some excellent
country and thematic guides, as well as a list of worldwide academic
programs in conflict and peace studies. They also offer Internship
possibilities.

Saferworld <http://www.saferworld.org.uk> UK think tank for the
prevention of armed conflict. Offers unpaid internships in research,
media and government relations.

International Alert <http://www.international-alert.org> London-based
NGO dedicated to the peaceful transformation of violent conflict. Has
internships and volunteering opportunities.

ConflictJobs Listserv <http://groups.yahoo.com/group/conflictjobs/>
Daily job postings for international positions in conflict and
development. Subscribe online.

Check out your conflict resolution skills at
<http://www.softpower.org>. It's a role-play game where you work with
communities to protect the rights of children.

Remember, 2001 to 2010 is UNESCO's International Decade for the
Culture of Peace. Find details about organisations involved, and
events organised at <http://www.unesco.org/cp>. Well, there's still
eight years to go...

> - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - ->

Darren Jones is a Careers Information Officer at the University of
Sussex Career Development & Employment Centre. He is a qualified
librarian, and the most under-developed place he has worked in is
Worthing. Contact him at <d.m.jones@sussex.ac.uk> or visit the CDEC
website at <http://www.sussex.ac.uk/cdec>.

> - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Related Free Pint links:

* "Nonprofits" articles and tipples in the Free Pint Portal
  <http://www.freepint.com/go/p179>
* Post a message to the author, Darren Jones, or suggest further 
  resources, at the Free Pint Bar <http://www.freepint.com/bar>
* Read this article online, with activated hyperlinks
  <http://www.freepint.com/issues/130602.htm#feature>
* Access the entire archive of Free Pint content
  <http://www.freepint.com/portal/content/>

> = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =


                         FORTHCOMING EVENTS
                 <http://www.freepint.com/events>

The Free Pint Email Publishing Exchange in West London on the 4th and
16th July 2002 will look at the many aspects to successful email
newsletter publishing (managing subscribers, distribution, finance,
content management, etc.) <http://www.freepint.com/go/e141>.
Meanwhile, the Intranet Exchange on July 11th covers the practical
issues in developing an intranet in a global organisation
<http://www.freepint.com/go/e142>.
  
Make a date to attend the "Library + Information Show" in London's
Docklands where they will showcase library-related products and
services, along with a number of free talks
<http://www.freepint.com/go/e131>. The Construction Industry
Information Group's (CIIG) "Construction Info. Forum" is also in
London <http://www.freepint.com/go/e145>.

Further afield, the Aslib Midlands Branch event "Surviving as a new
manager" is in Corby <http://www.freepint.com/go/e144>, and the "My
Humbul Summer Seminar: Online Resource Discovery and Use" in Oxford
focuses on humanities resources <http://www.freepint.com/go/e146>.

Finally stateside, Frost & Sullivan have their "3rd Annual Internet
Marketing Strategies Executive Summit" on the West Coast
<http://www.freepint.com/go/e125> and  "Transforming Your Business
Using CRM & PRM: 3rd Annual Executive Summit" on the East Coast
<http://www.freepint.com/go/e126>.
  
Find out more about these and other information industry conferences
on the Free Pint Events page <http://www.freepint.com/events>.

Submit details of your event anywhere in the world for free
promotion, and keep us informed of any changes to current listings.

> = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =


                           FREE PINT GOLD

This time last year we were obviously anticipating our new series 
of 'Exchange' seminars since we looked at conference information on
the Web. Did you hear about the Dyslexic Witch? If not then you must
read the article on dyslexia resources.

* Free Pint No.89, 7th June 2001. "Conference Information and the
  Internet" and "Dyslexia Resources" 
  <http://www.freepint.com/issues/070601.htm>

Two years ago there were articles about the UK insurance industry
online, and an introduction to the Invisible Web by one of the
co-authors of our 50,000th-new-member-welcome-pack-book.

* Free Pint No.64, 8th June 2000. "Understanding Insurance" and "The 
  Invisible Web" <http://www.freepint.com/issues/080600.htm>

In 1999, we looked at what weather resources on the Web offer, and
what they don't. We dipped into the search engine strategy arena (so
ably served by SearchEngineWatch) with discussion of how search
engines were trying to make ends meet at that time.

* Free Pint No.40, 10th June 1999. "Weather Sources on the Web" and 
  "Searching for Mammon - Search engine business models" 
  <http://www.freepint.com/issues/100699.htm>

Two how-to articles appeared four years ago. One with ten quick steps
to Web site marketing, and the other by Free Pint's William on
running a survey on the Net. Things have probably moved on though in
the four years since that advice was given.

* Free Pint No.16, 11th June 1998. "Web Site Marketing - How do they 
  do that?" and "How to run a survey on the Net" 
  <http://www.freepint.com/issues/110698.htm>

> = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =


                   FREE PINT FORTHCOMING ARTICLES
                           [Provisional]

                   * Legal Sources * Toxicology *
              * Biomedical Sources * Virtual Reference *
                * Academic, Economic & Social Science *
     * RSI & the Library & Information Science Professional *

If you have a suggestion for an article topic or would like to write
for Free Pint then please contact me or sign up for the regular Author
Update on the Web site at <http://www.freepint.com/author.htm>.

                Rex Cooke, Editor <rex@freepint.com>

> = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =

                              GOODBYE

Many thanks for reading today's Free Pint. I hope you'll join us
in raising a virtual toast to our 50,000th member and looking forward
to welcoming 50,000 more Free Pinters.

             William Hann, Founder and Managing Editor
                      <william@freepint.com>

(c) Free Pint Limited 1997-2002
<http://www.freepint.com/>

> = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =
> = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =


                        CONTACT INFORMATION

Address:

   Free Pint Limited
   4-6 Station Approach
   Ashford, Middlesex
   TW15 2QN, United Kingdom

   Tel: +44 (0)1784 420044
   Fax: +44 (0)1784 420033

   Directions and maps: <http://www.freepint.com/contact.htm>

Key contacts:

   William Hann, Founder and Managing Editor <william@freepint.com>
   Rex Cooke, Editor <rex@freepint.com>
   Simon Collery, Content Developer <simon@freepint.com>
   Penny, Administrator <penny@freepint.com>

Web <http://www.freepint.com>
Subscriptions <subs@freepint.com>
Letters & Comments <feedback@freepint.com>
Authors <http://www.freepint.com/author.htm>
Latest Issue Autoresponder <auto@freepint.com>
Advertising <http://www.freepint.com/advert.htm>

> = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = 

Free Pint (ISSN 1460-7239) is a free newsletter written by information 
professionals who share how they find quality and reliable information
on the Internet.  Useful to anyone who uses the Web for their work, it
is published every two weeks by email.

To subscribe, unsubscribe, find details about contributing, 
advertising or to see past issues, please visit the Web site at 
<http://www.freepint.com/> or email <info@freepint.com>.

Please note: Free Pint is a registered trademark of, and published by,
Free Pint Limited. The publishers will NEVER make the subscriber list
available to any other company or organisation.

The opinions, advice, products and services offered herein are the
sole responsibility of the contributors. Whilst all reasonable care
has been taken to ensure the accuracy of the publication, the
publishers cannot accept responsibility for any errors or omissions.

This publication may be freely copied and/or distributed in its
entirety. However, individual sections MAY NOT be copied and/or
distributed without the prior written agreement of the publishers.
Write to Rex Cooke, Editor <rex@freepint.com> for more details.
Product names used in Free Pint are for identification purposes only,
and may be trademarks of their respective owners. Free Pint disclaims
any and all rights in those marks. All rights reserved.

> = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =
> = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =

« Previous Newsletter Feed Next Newsletter »

About this Newsletter


Back to top ^



Jinfo Newsletter

Click for the Jinfo Newsletter in new window/tabKeep up-to-date with the latest from Jinfo Research by email twice-monthly.

 Register free » 


Latest: No.532 5th December