Upgrading Academic Scholarship : Challenges and Chances of the Digital Age


  • Rudi Schmiede




Digital Age, academic scholarship, scholarly information, scholarly work, information infrastructure, DDC: 020 (Library and information sciences)


Purpose: The paper is a discussion of what the beginning of the Internet Age means for the functions and structures of scholarly information and communication by looking at and evaluating today's usability and usage of the digital information infrastructure for and by academic scholarship. Design/methodology/approach: The paper gives an overview of the current state of development of digital information in the scholarly cultures and stresses the importance of data as the crucial - and considerably extended - basis of scholarly work. The central role of the publishing world for the academic rewards system is analyzed to consider continuities and discontinuities in scholarly publication. Findings: The paper advances the thesis first coined by Christine Borgman that today we have an information infrastructure of, but not one for scholarly information. Some ideas and proposals of what should be done to move towards an information infrastructure for scholarly work conclude the paper. Originality/value: The paper tries to bridge the gap between information professionals as producers and scholars as users of information and communication technologies and shows that a joint debate on these issues is necessary.