The purpose of this paper is to clarify whether it is possible to offer information services in the humanities or not, and what kind of services should be offerred, based on the information needs and uses of scholars in the humanities.
To persue this purpose, a review of previous studies in this field is made, from which the hypothesis about the information needs and uses of humanities scholars is derived. To test this hypothesis, 7 humanities scholars at Keio University are interviewed. The results of interviews prove the hypothesis is right for the most part. And it is found as follows that: 1) There is only a small need for and use of information services because of some factors which obstruct the use of those services. 2) If the obstructions are removed, the need for and use of information services should increase. 3) Two types of information need are identified: “basic information” and “considerably specialized information”. 4) The need for and use of information services depends on the type of information need.
From the above, it is concluded that in order to offer effective information services in the humanities, it would be necessary: 1) to remove factors which obstruct the use of services, 2) to distinguish between the two types of information need, 3) to try to understand what kind of data each scholar needs, especially in cases where they need “considerably specialized information”.
© 1991 三田図書館・情報学会© 1991 Mita Society for Library and Information Science
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