Reflecting on Yesterday, Understanding Today, Planning for Tomorrow

Although the JISC Observatory is being closed, Brian Kelly and Paul Hollins wrote a paper entitled “Reflecting on Yesterday, Understanding Today, Planning for Tomorrow” which was presented at the Umbrella 2013 conference.

As described in the abstract:

The JISC Observatory provides horizon-scanning of technological developments which may be of relevant for the UK’s higher and further education sectors. The JISC Observatory team has developed systematic processes for the scanning, sense-making and synthesis activities for the work. This paper summarises the JISC Observatory work and related activities carried out by the authors. The paper outlines how the processes can be applied in a local context to ensure that institutions are able to gather evidence in a systematic way and understand and address the limitations of evidence-gathering processes. The paper describes use of open processes for interpreting the evidence and suggests possible implications of the horizon-scanning activities for policy-making and informing operational practices. The paper concludes by encouraging take-up of open approaches in gathering and interpretation of evidence used to inform policy-making in an institutional context.

 The paper is available fr0m the University of Bath repository in MS Word and PDF formats.

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Final Version of TechWatch Report on ‘Preparing for Effective Adoption and Use of Ebooks in Education’ Published

The final version of the TechWatch Report Preparing for Effective Adoption and Use of Ebooks in Education is now available in PDF format.

The report has been updated in light of feedback received from a preview version made available in September.

As described in the report’s introduction:

As ebooks become mainstream and the percentage of academic publications delivered as ebooks rises steadily, this report is a primer to help academic librarians, managers and members of faculty prepare for the increasing adoption and use of ebooks in education.

This report aims to support the adoption of ebooks by:

  • introducing the historical and present context of ebooks
  • reviewing the basics of ebook technologies
  • considering scenarios for ebook adoption and usage
  • addressing current challenges.
  • considering future developments.

Written by James Clay, Gloucestershire College, this report is the fourth in a series of TechWatch reports that have been published by the JISC Observatory.

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Preview version of TechWatch Report on eBooks in Education Available for Comments

The JISC Observatory is pleased to announce the release of a preview version of a new TechWatch report entitled Preparing for Effective Adoption and Use of eBooks in Education.

Written by James Clay (ILT Learning and Resources Manager at Gloucestershire College), this report updates previous work researching the usage and adoption of ebooks within academic institutions and examines recent developments that are shaping how academic institutions can respond to growing interest in ebooks:

As ebooks become mainstream and the percentage of academic publications delivered as ebooks rises steadily, this report explains the importance of preparing for the increasing adoption and usage of ebooks in academic institutions. Specifically, this report: 1) introduces the historical and present context of ebooks; 2) reviews the basics of ebooks; 3) considers scenarios for ebook adoption and usage; 4) addresses current challenges; and 5) considers the future. This report also provides a glossary to help clarify key terms and a ‘References’ section listing works cited.

The preview version of this report is open for public comments from 27 September to 8 October 2012. A final version, taking into account feedback received, is scheduled for publication around the end of October.

We welcome comments of any nature regarding this report’s content (including your views on topics or examples included or omitted, relevance to your work, etc). Comments of appreciation are also welcome!

Please use one of the following options to send us your feedback:

  • The ‘Leave a reply‘ Web form below can help you send us your general comments.
  • For more detailed feedback, we have set up a  JISCPress site to help you post section-by-section comments.
  • If you would prefer to send feedback by email, you can send comments to Observatory Project Manager Thom Bunting (

We hope you enjoy reading this preview version of the forthcoming TechWatch report. If referring others to this preview draft, please link to and cite the URL of the main page for this TechWatch report on the JISC Observatory Web site (rather than the URL of the PDF version of the draft version of the report, which is subject to change).

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