Barriers to Effective Information Seeking of Social Scientists in Developing Countries: The Case of Sultan Qaboos University in Oman
- Authors: Mohammed Nasser Al-Suqri and Linda L. Lillard
The purpose of the study was to investigate barriers affecting information-seeking behaviors of social science scholars at Sultan Qaboos University (SQU) in Oman. It will help to redress the balance and provide a better understanding of the barriers and constraints facing scholars in the developing world. Qualitative data are collected using 21 e-mail interviews and 16 face-to-face interviews were conducted. Content analysis technique was used to analyze the qualitative data generated from the email and face-to-face interviews. It was found that social scientists at SQU face two different types of challenges and barriers which are library-related barriers, such as inadequate library resources, problems with the organization of library resources, information technology limitations, and lack of adequate training; and non library-related barriers, such as inadequate internet connections, lack of adequate time for research, and language/cultural related barriers. The study reported that the SQU main Library can overcome these barriers by improving and expanding library resources, providing better information technology facilities, and providing more support and training to users.