Disruption be my guide: A study into future directions for academic programs for information management

Steve O'Connor, Ian Smith, Waseem Afzal

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose: The skill set required to be a professional in any profession is inherent in the qualifications required for entrance to that profession. The ability to demonstrate leadership in the middle to upper echelons of that profession is demonstrably different. The School of Information Studies at the Charles Sturt University in Wagga Wagga Australia sought to explore what a postgraduate qualification in the leadership of the profession might look like and what the demand for such a qualification might be. The purpose of this paper is to detail that research effort and the outcomes. Design/methodology/approach: The study undertook a number of different approaches including engaging in networks of professional colleagues globally and a series of focus groups in Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne. The outcomes were analyzed in terms of the expectations of what a new degree might contain as well as the enrollment prospects for such a degree. Findings: There was a strong ground-swell of support for a new degree of Masters of Information Leadership. The combination of subjects from the LIS environment together with subjects from a MBA environment was strongly endorsed. These areas of interest were documented in the paper along with recommendations. Research limitations/implications: There is a fertile ground for research here in two ways. First, there is much scope for the examination of the course requirements and how they sit in a future work environment. This is especially the case where there is a convergence of the interests of the galleries, libraries, archives and museums sectors. Second, there is much to be done as the authors look at leadership skills sets for future information environments which are highly speculative. Practical implications: This study has produced a set of requirements for a new Masters of Information Leadership. It is a very useful set of requirements to base future studies. There was also a very strong requirement for real life aspects to such a course rather than theoretical exercises as has been the current academic practice. Originality/value: This study is quite original as it sought to engage practitioners in different areas and sectors in Australia aiming to ensure that the resulting academic program was closely aligned with practitioner need.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)71-80
Number of pages10
JournalLibrary Hi Tech
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2017


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