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Topical Briefs
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34.  Innovative Ways of Promoting Reading
(November 2002)
Librarians and educators are always looking for new and creative ways of promoting reading. Children, youths and adults need innovative programmes to encourage them to continue reading and make reading an important and everyday part of their lives. In a world that is constantly changing reading takes on an added importance by helping us learn new skills so that we can apply it to our daily lives. This topical brief looks at the various innovative and creative ways for encouraging reading among infants and toddlers, children, male readers and adults. National reading and literacy organisations, libraries, schools, parents and the private sector all join forces to promote reading and uplift the lives of those in urban and rural societies. Some of these programmes are easy to implement while others involve more than one organisation and members of the community.
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35.  Information Packaging/Brokering
(October 2002)
The application of new, advanced technology in the information realm has resulted in a tremendous growth in the supply of information available. In particular, the emergence of the Internet has seen the supply of information or content available to consumers increasing a hundredfold over the past few years (Goldstein, 2001). However, the information available is can be best described as “fragmented” (Harley, et al. 2001). More often than not, information is published “without any thought whatsoever to packaging” (Goldstein). Thus, this topical brief, apart from defining the terms “information packaging” and “information brokering”, will highlight the need for packaging information and the value-added role information brokers play. Besides, the benefits of packaged information and the qualities necessary for a successful information broker will be discussed here.
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36.  Practices That Kill Innovation
(September 2002)
As with any organisation, libraries need to innovate to stay relevant and competitive in the information society. This brief surveys the literature on practices that kill innovation. Innovation and creativity (used interchangeably here) has been an elusive and amorphous research field. Numerous research attempts have tried to define and systemise innovation. The literature on negative practices, on the other hand, is scanty. Nevertheless, this brief reviews and presents the literature on negative practices that hinder innovation. The spectrum of bad practice covers the whole range of organisational studies: structures, processes and behaviours. Inevitably, there are overlaps. However, the main theme that comes through is the need to strike a balance between controls and freedom to create.
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