Developing a Virtual Community-Based Information Systems Digital Library: A Proposal and Research Program

  • John R. Venable
  • Julie Travis
Part of the IFIP — The International Federation for Information Processing book series (IFIPAICT, volume 41)


This paper proposes that the worldwide, virtual community of information systems researchers develop a digital library system to support the needs of its members and those of the larger community that IS researchers serve. It describes an initial vision for an information systems digital library (ISDL) and the potential contribution of an ISDL to the worldwide virtual IS research and practice communities, in terms of improving the research function, contributing knowledge to the IS field, improving transfer of knowledge to IS practice, and improving the reputation of the IS field with respect to other academic disciplines. While the academic and professional domain of an ISDL would be information systems, the lessons learned could be applied to other domains. The paper argues that, to be successful, a virtual community-based approach is needed for the planning, analysis, organization, development, and operation of an ISDL. Taken together, the development of an ISDL and the institution of a virtual community-based approach provide rich opportunities for research into information systems that serve an entire community, development approaches that take community and consensus-building needs into account, and ways to restructure and improve upon the IS research community as an inquiring system. The paper briefly describes a framework for a research program and initial and planned research toward the practical realization of both an ISDL and community-based IS development.


Digital library group support system soft systems methodology information systems development virtual community virtual organization scholarly discourse 


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Copyright information

© IFIP International Federation for Information Processing 2000

Authors and Affiliations

  • John R. Venable
    • 1
  • Julie Travis
    • 1
  1. 1.Curtin UniversityAustralia

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