Post Doctoral Researcher
323 Hinds Hall
I am a post-doc with the title Project Manager for International Development. As such, I am currently working on a number of projects related to global librarianship and increasing the global reach of our iSchool, including the following:
1. Improving Teacher-Librarian Education in Rwanda - We are working with ITOCA to help the Kigali Institute of Education in Rwanda start a program in Teacher-Librarianship. This summer, four lecturers from the Kigali Institute of Education will visit Syracuse and start a certificate program in Teacher-Librarianship. They will do the majority of the coursework through distance, and when finished, we will help them set up a program in Teacher-Librarianship at the Kigali Institute of Education. This project is funded by the United Kingdom's Department for International Development.
2. Collaboration with Effat University - I am taking the lead in the iSchool's collaboration with Effat University. Next fall, we will be visiting the school to see their curriculum in action, and in the spring, we will try coordinating some student projects between the two universities.
3. Teaching a Course in Italy - Last summer, five masters students and I traveled to Italy for a course in Global Librarianship. We visited many amazing libraries and ate great food. Our blog describes some of our adventures.
My overarching research interest is in the role of public libraries in society. The public library, as an institution, may be facing change as new media and technologies are used for information and entertainment. Therefore, understanding its fundamental role and function may aid policy makers and librarians as they make these changes. Public libraries are often described as educational, cultural and recreational institutions. They are also often touted as cornerstones of democracy (Kranich, 2001) and institutions that help create social equality. But as Buschman (2008) points out there is little empirical evidence to back up these claims. My research aims are therefore to help clarify three points. 1. Are libraries supporting democracy? 2. How are they or can they support democracy and social equality? 3. What is the effect of changes in information and communication on the library and the ability (or inability) of libraries to support democracy and social equality. The first research aim can also be stated more broadly, as understanding the role of the library in society and whether that role is related to democracy and equality and the building of a democratic society. Democracy is difficult to define or use as a research construct, and therefore, I have been working around it instead of approaching it directly. The idea of government-supported information provision is the underlying idea behind the public library, and it may be that new technologies change the public library into a substantially different form of government-supported information provision. I do not want to exclude this possible transformation from my research.
Publications and Presentations:
Ignatow, G., Webb, S.M., Webb, Poulin, M., Parajuli, R., Fleming, P., Batra, S., and Neupane, D. Public Libraries and Democratization in Three Developing Countries: Exploring the Role of Social Capital. Libri v. 62, March 2012
Webb, Sarah M., Public Libraries in a World Society. Poster at I-Conference. February 3-6, 2010. Champaigne-Urbana, Illinois
Webb, Sarah M., Library Use in Community Library Serving the Urban Poor: A case study of two libraries. Presented at Standing Conference of Eastern, Central, and Southern African Librarians and Information Workers (SCECSAL) Biennial Conference, December 6-9, 2010, Gaborone, Botswana.
Sturges, Paul and Webb, Sarah M., Access to Information on HIV/AIDS Workshop. Standing Conference of Eastern, Central and Southern African Librarians and Information Workers (SCECSAL) Biennial Conference, July 14, 2008. Lusaka, Zambia
Sturges, Paul and Webb, Sarah M., Practicalities of Intellectual Freedom. Standing Conference of Eastern, Central and Southern African Librarians and Information Workers (SCECSAL) Biennial Conference, July 10, 2006. Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania
Silverstein, Joanne. and Webb, Sarah. M., School Librarians, Informal Learning and Digital Reference Services. IASL annual conference, July 6, 2006. Lisbon, Portugal.
Inoue, Keisuke and Webb, Sarah M., Globalization and Information Studies. Connections, May 20, 2006. Syracuse, New York.
Webb, Sarah M. (2005) Creating a Reading Culture: one librarian’s mission in Rwanda. Children and Libraries v. 3 #3, winter 2005.
Younker, J.M. and Sarah M. Webb, (2005) Mind the Gap: what’s missing in teen realistic fiction. VOYA v. 28 #3, August 2005.
IST600 International Librarianship, Florence Italy. August 2012.
|Summer 2012||IST600||M808||International Librarianship||
|Fall 2010||IST600||M009||International Librarianship||
|Spring 2010||IST616||M001||Info Rsces: Organiz & Access||