Research project on British Library

Essay on British Library

The British Library is one of the world's greatest research libraries and is regarded as the international institution. It holds around 170 million items from different nations in several languages in both formats print and digital. Library include items such as books, manuscripts, music, newspapers, drawings, sound, journals etc (Lankes, 2011). The institution act as non-departmental public body sponsored by the Department for culture,media and sport. It was established in 1973 in part of London. Since then library has seen great transformation in its services and strategic priorities. Management continues to work on delivering high quality and innovative services for the users. Digital modernization was an important phase in the services of British Library (Goodchild, 2012). It has now become an important part of its strategic goals and objectives. This research is undertaken to talk about one of the component of digital world that is digital scholarship for the scholars.

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Digital scholarship is the use of digital resources, methods of inquiry, publication, preservation etc to accomplish scholarly objectives. It is an attempt to establish digital media and social media as incredible, authorized and professional way of performing research and communication (Chowdhury, 2010). Lot of scholars and researchers are performing their research activities through digital tools and approaches. British Library is also offering this service to its users. It will be very interesting to know how users are engaged with the digital content of the library. Hence this research study has been undertaken in order to identify the impact of Digital modernization on the services of the British Library (Garibay, Gutiérrez, & Figueroa, 2010). The major aim of this research study is to identify the impact of Digital modernization on the services of the British Library. For that purpose following objectives is placed:

  • To perform research on digital library and digital scholarship in order to access the customer satisfaction
  • To discuss the role of digital scholarship in British Library
  • To conduct survey on customer satisfaction related to digital services in British Library
  • To examine the level of satisfaction of digital content and services on British library users

Research question

What is the impact of digital modernization on the services of British Library?

The significance of this research study is that it will give an clear insight view about the existing digital research trends. It will also determine which digital tools, content and services are needed to be prioritized by British Library. Apart from that it will help in identifying the need and expectations of the library users. Scope of the study is that it will further open new opportunities for British Library for bringing more digital changes in the future.

Data Collection is the most vital section of the research. It is very important that valid and relevant data is to be collected for evaluation. It is required to be collected from valid and authentic sources. There are two types of data primary and secondary (Sapsford and Jupp, 2006). Primary data is new and fresh in nature and on getting used once become secondary to others. For this study, primary data will be collected from users of British Library through survey method. Secondary information is available from books, journals, online sources, Annual reports related to the British Library (Punch, 2009). Survey method will be applied because it is the most effectual approach of collecting substantial amount of information.

Digital library

Digital library is a focused collection of digital objects such as audio material, visual material, text, video material etc. All these stored in the form of electronic media formats. These libraries varies in size and scope. These are maintained by individuals, groups or organizations. The electronic content may be stored locally or accessed remotely through computer networks (Tang and et.all., 2012). It is a kind of information retrieval system. It is the most advanced medium of gaining knowledge and learning for the users. These users include researchers, scholars, students, experts etc. It is used widely because it provides lot of convenience and simplicity as the user can have the data in a very quick span of time (Hutchinson and et. all., 2013). This type of library is a kind of gift for the people as they can avail the knowledge sitting in any part of the world. It is essential that these kind of approaches should be encouraged on wide level.

Digital scholarship

Digital scholarship is an highly advanced method of offering scholarship for the users. It make use of digital tools and techniques to offer learning and knowledge to the scholars. Several concerns have been risen related to regulation of digital scholarship across many universities across the world. The increasing demand of the scholarly work has left many Universities to think how they will manage scholarship in future (Xiaolin, 2011). There is a growing interest of people in performing scholarly and research activities. In that context, digital scholarship has come highly into the picture. They are using digital scholarship in order to make money and staying ahead and also for the protection of their brand. People are also finding lot of familiarity with this approach because people these days have become techno-friendly. They are more into computers, laptops, gadgets, smart phones etc (Zhang, 2010). These things are making their life easy and comfortable. Hence in such case invention of digital scholarship adds higher value to their life.

Research Limitations

There can be some issues and limitations with the study. These issues might impact upon achieving the output of the Gantt

  • Researcher can face issue of lack of accessibility towards the respondents. He could not able to trace the respondents properly
  • There can be lack of resources such as funds, content, manpower, contacts etc
  • Findings can be influenced by behavior and attitude of the users
  • Respondents may feel hesitate to share their responses and opinions
  • There can be problem with the relevancy of data and information

Reflective Essay

The self-reflection is considered to be the most important part of research work. It is through self-reflection that the researcher is able to contribute significantly to the research work. The reflective statement helps in identifying one’s weaknesses and strengths that in-turn helps in conducting research with efficiency. The research on digital modernization has helped me in gaining various valuable insights. I am glad to acquire knowledge about development of digital libraries. Moreover, it also helped me in gaining awareness about concepts and development of digital library. The research added to my knowledge base of manner in which digital services of British Library helped in improving life of people. I feel that in today’s world of digital technology the every aspect of human life is turning digital. I am surprised to see the manner in which digital services of British library has increase the level of convenience among people. Library is meant for gaining knowledge about various fields. In traditional times, individuals used to spend most of time in reading books in library. However, in present world due to busy schedule it has been found that reading habits of people are declining on continuous basis.

It can be therefore said that the digital library provides a platform to inculcate reading habit among people. I am glad to know that digital services of library provides an opportunity to people for maintaining their reading habits within comfort zone of their home. I have heard of online libraries and services offered by them. However, I have never availed the services provided by them due to lack of awareness. It is through present research that awareness has been created in me regarding presence of digital library within the country. I am surprised to see the manner in which digital modernization leads to improvement in services of British library. I can say that the digital modernization has changed the life style of people. The conduct of research also proves to be highly significant for me. I am able to equip skills related to the conduct of research. This in turn helps me in development of skills that are highly valuable for my personality development. The academic research is considered to be part and parcel of researchers’ life.

I am really glad to acquire skills related to manner in which research can be conducted with efficiency. Moreover, the skills acquired will help me in my future endeavours. I will be able to conduct the research work in future with high proficiency. I can say that the skills and learning developed as a part of research work support me for long-term. It is through the present skills acquired that I will be able to understand various concepts related to research work. Moreover, I can claim that the issues that I am capable of solving issues that arises as a part of research work. I can therefore say the present research has laid down a firm foundation in me for conduct of future research work.

Research Proposal

Digital scholarship is regarded as the use of digital tools and approaches for achieving the research goals and objectives. It contains both scholarly communication by making use of digital media and research on digital media. Different universities and colleges are establishing digital scholarship centers in the country to provide support to high end digital projects. It provides research, teaching and learning to the users (Lankes, 2011). As discussed earlier British Library is performing its operation by making use of digital tools and approaches. The institution is quite influenced by the digital world. High number of scholars and researchers are doing their research activities through these tools. This research work is undertaken to identify the impact of Digital modernization on the services of the British Library. It will also identify whether the British library users are satisfied with the modernized services provided by the institution (Goodchild, 2012). It will identify the new opportunities for them in the area of digital world. The objectives of the research study are as follows:

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  • To identify the awareness and adoption of digital tools and content on the research practices of British library users.
  • To discuss the role of digital scholarship in British Library
  • To examine the level of satisfaction of digital content and services on British library users
  • To research on digital library and digital scholarship in order to access customer satisfaction
  • To perform survey on customer satisfaction related to digital services of British Library

Background of the organization

The British library as the name suggest is the national library of United Kingdom. Library is the place that aims at increasing individual’s knowledge by providing reading material of varied range. The British library is well-renowned library across the world with collection of approximately 170 million items (Garibay, Gutiérrez & Figueroa, 2010). The library has maintained collection of books, journals, manuscripts, journals, magazines, sound-recordings, music-recordings, videos, play-scripts, patents, databases, maps, stamps, prints and drawings. The collection consists of items in different languages and formats. Moreover, the library has occupied the largest library across world measured through the number of items (Hutchinson and et.all., 2013). As the renowned library, British library tends to receive copy of all books that are published in United Kingdom and Ireland.

The library has attracted large number of readers from various parts of world. The library owes its existence to 1973 when it was created as a declaration of British Library Act 1972. The library was considered as a part of British museum prior to its creation (Goodchild, M. F. (2012)). The library has been retaining its image of national library since its creation. It has changed the way of operations with the time. In present time, it has also adopted digital methods to offer services to readers (About Us, British Library, n.d.). It can be said that the library is highly professional and satisfies demand of all its readers. The report is highly focused on identifying the impact of digital modernization on the services of the institution. It tries to identify whether users of BL are satisfied from their digital content and services. It will also identify the awareness and adoption of digital tools and content on the research practices of British library users.

Research methodology

This section shows the application of research tools and techniques that are applied for the study. It is important that all the methods must be applied with appropriate tools and approaches along with proper justification and logic (Sapsford and Jupp, 2006).

Research philosophy

Research philosophy is related with examining the thought process of the people. There are four type of philosophies realism, positivism, pragmatism and interpretivism. The present report will follows interpretivism philosophy (Punch, 2009). It will work towards understanding the impact of Digital modernization on the services of the British Library. It will help in investigating the phenomenon in more natural environment. It helps in identifying the thoughts of the people and their actions.

Research approach

It outlines the framework carried by the study. Research approach helps in bringing effectiveness throughout the study. There are two types of inductive approach and deductive approach. For this study inductive approach will be applied. It is related with discovery of new theory from the information (Olsen, 2011). This approach is applied because this research work is focused on exploring new phenomenon and it also look at the previously researched phenomenon from a different view point. Further this study is associated with qualitative research.

Research design

Research design reflects the quality of the study. It helps in collecting, interpreting and analyzing the data related to the subject. Selection of a suitable design offers knowledge in more conceptual manner. Different types of research design are descriptive, exploratory, casual, case study, experimental etc (McBurney and White 2009). For this study a combination of descriptive and exploratory design will be applied. Descriptive design is applied because the study is related with an specific entity that is British Library. Here the researcher wants to examine a specific behavior as it occurs in the environment. Further this design demands collection of data through survey (Erik and Marko 2011). Exploratory design is applied because the researcher has observed something about the British Library and is making efforts to gain more knowledge about it.

Research type

It states the manner under which the data is to be presented and analyzed. There are two research types qualitative and quantitative. For this study qualitative type will be used as the study is more subjective in nature (Cohen, Manion & Morrison, 2007). It requires evaluation of the data by using qualitative methods. Further it examines the behavior of the consumers in certain environment.

Sampling and sample size

Sampling activity aids in selection of persons who can provide some valuable data for the research. It helps in making the data collection task easy and effortless. There are two methods of sampling probability and non probability (Sapsford and Jupp, 2006). For this study combination of convenience and random sampling is applied which belongs to both the types. Convenience sampling is adopted because it helps in collecting the data as per the convenience of the researcher. For this study researcher will collected the data through survey approach by visiting the British Library (Punch, 2009). On visiting the library through random sampling approach he will select the respondents for the survey. A sample size of 50 respondents have been kept for the survey.

Data Analysis

Data analysis is the most significant part of the study. It is essential that the collected data must be analyzed in proper manner. For this study, data is analyzed by using thematic analysis. This technique is appropriate because the research is of qualitative nature (Cohen, Manion & Morrison, 2007). It is concerned with human behavior and theoretical aspects. Further it is one of the best approach of evaluating the qualitative information

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Ethical issues

There can be some ethical issues with the research work, hence researcher will follow all the ethical guidelines during the study. All the data and information will be collected from valid and authentic sources. Act of plagiarism will be avoided to the higher extent. During the survey process identity of the respondents will be kept secretive until being told to disclose. Opinions and responses of the participants will be respected (McBurney and White, 2009). There should not be any harm to their feelings and sentiments. Researcher will also try to avoid any kind of subjectivity within the report.


From the above study it can be concluded that this research proposal will prove to be an extinguishing research for the readers. Researcher can say that the skills and learning developed as a part of research work support support for him. He will gain lot of new skills and learning from this report. It will help him in his career development. There are certain ethical and limitation issues which are to be taken into consideration by the researcher. This study will successfully identify the impact of digital modernization on the services of British Library.


  • Erik M. and Marko S., 2011. A Concise Guide to Market Research: The Process, Data, and Methods Using IBM SPSS Statistics. Springer
  • Garibay, C., Gutiérrez, H., & Figueroa, A. 2010. Evaluation of a digital library by means of quality function deployment (QFD) and the Kano model.
  • Goodchild, M. F. 2012. The Alexandria digital library project review, assessment, and prospects.Trends in Information Management (TRIM),1(1).
  • Hutchinson and et.all., 2013. The international children’s digital library: a case study in designing for a multilingual, multicultural, multigenerational audience.
  • Lankes, R. D. 2011.The atlas of new librarianship. MIT Press.
  • McBurney, D. and White, T. 2009. Research Methods. Cengage Learning.
  • Olsen, W., 2011. Data Collection: Key Debates and Methods in Social Research. SAGE.
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