‘ASSOCIATION OF DEMOGRAPHIC VARIABLES VERSUS FEELINGS OF USERS TOWARDS USE OF ELECTRONIC INFORMATION RESOURCES (EIR)’ A RESEARCH SURVEY OF AEROSPACE SCIENTISTS AND ENGINEERS OF BANGALORE

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‘ASSOCIATION OF DEMOGRAPHIC VARIABLES VERSUS

FEELINGS OF USERS TOWARDS USE OF ELECTRONIC

INFORMATION RESOURCES (EIR)’

A RESEARCH SURVEY OF AEROSPACE SCIENTISTS AND

ENGINEERS OF BANGALORE

*

R Guruprasad1

*Scientist, Knowledge and Technology Management Division, CSIR-National Aerospace Laboratories, Bangalore, India.

+

P. Marimuthu2

+Associate Professor, Dept. of Bio-Statistics, National Institute of Mental Health and Neuro Sciences (NIMHANS), Bangalore, India.

ABSTRACT

A research survey was undertaken to ascertain the ‘Association of Demographic Variables versus the Feelings of Users towards Electronic Information Resources’, amongst the aerospace scientists and engineers of selected 16 aerospace organizations of Bangalore. The

2 test indicates that the demographic variables, viz., Category Wise Distribution of the Respondents, Occupation Profile, Gender, Age-Group, Qualification and Specialization by the ‘Feeling of Users towards Electronic Information’ have no significant association. This implies that the percentage of preference for the above mentioned demographic variables are approximately the same [Uniformly distributed].

Key Words: Electronic Information Resources, Use Patterns, Aerospace Scientists and Engineers, Feelings of Users, City of Bangalore.

I. Introduction

Aviation is one of the most significant technological marvels of our time and empowers the nation with strength. It is a major tool for economic development and has a significant role in national security and international relations.

Aerospace engineering is the application of advanced science and technology for the design and development of flight vehicles. These include aircraft, spacecraft, missiles and

GE-International Journal of Engineering Research

Vol. 4, Issue 10, October 2016 IF- 4.721 ISSN(O):(2321-1717), ISSN(P):(2394-420X)

© Associated Asia Research Foundation (AARF) Publication

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rockets. An aerospace engineer develops new technologies for control, navigation and propulsion that will lead to future milestones in the history of flight. Originally called aeronautical engineering dealing solely with aircraft, the broader term "aerospace engineering" has replaced the former in most usage, as flight technology advanced to include craft operating outside the earth's atmosphere. In analogy with "aeronautical engineering", the branch is sometimes referred to as astronautical engineering, although this term usually only concerns craft which operate in outer space. Aerospace engineering comprises several disciplines: aerodynamics, flight mechanics and control, avionics, navigation, propulsion, structures, materials, and manufacturing, etc.

In this information explosion age, it is practically impossible for an aerospace scientist or engineer to carry out his research work without embracing the network and Internet technologies. They greatly depend upon these electronic innovation tools for accessing electronic information resources in the form of e-journals related to aerospace engineering right at their desktops. In fact, many of the scientists in today‟s R&D organizations have the unique privilege of downloading full-text e-journals right at their desktops through their Organization‟s e-Conglomerate.

It is absolutely clear that the use of electronic media to support scientific communication has undoubtedly been one of the paradigm shifts in the practice of science in this era. For a research scientist today, with access to the Internet, working across continents and in different time zones and keeping in touch with his peers has indeed become a reality due to the exponential growth of the telecommunication infrastructure that the world has witnessed. Most surprisingly, all this happens with very marginal costs of communication.

With the coming of e-resources, there has been a significant transformation by which scholarly information is disseminated throughout the world. In fact, the arrival of e-journals has greatly affected the way a scientist or an engineer seeks this information, acquires it and then uses it effectively.

With this radical shift in scholarly research, it is not surprising that the role of the librarian as an „information provider‟ has dramatically changed. With constant advances in technology, the library and the librarian need to adjust by „embracing the electronic technology‟ to meet the constant fluctuation and demands in the user‟s information seeking behaviour and needs.

Today, scientists and engineers use electronic resources because of quick, easy access, and convenience. Also, very little effort is required to retrieve information from these e-resources.

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of scientific publications will more or less disappear. It is very clear that the World Wide Web has very largely facilitated and propelled the emergence of these electronic resources.

It is important to note that the scientists and engineers in aerospace organizations are currently working on projects, which are of strategic importance to this country. These scientists largely depend on rapid collection of information from various „electronic information resources‟

II. Need for Electronic Information Resources and Services among the Scientists and Engineers

During the late 1980‟s and early 1990‟s many new information technologies arose that revolutionized the way in which people searched for and gathered information. More and more publications began to profile the impact that new electronic resources had on different populations. The coming of the Internet itself was the most fundamental shift since Gutenberg‟s invention of the printing press, Gleeson [1].

Somewhere between 1994 and 1996 there was a profound shift in electronic resource usage by scientists. The shift could be attributed to the increase in popularity and usability of the Internet itself as well as the resources it contained. Curtis et al., [2] opine that the increase in the use of the electronic information resources was attributed to the availability of more and better electronic resources, desktop access through networked workstations, and user-friendly interface design.

With the coming of the twenty-first century, successful storage and retrieval of the exponentially growing body of scientific information quickly became dependent upon the Internet and World Wide Web. The way in which scientists seek information to support teaching, research and creative activities is changing as new technologies and information delivery systems emerge, Brown [3]. Consequently, the traditional model of scientific communication proposed by Garvey and Griffith [4], state that information is primarily disseminated through, and subsequently becomes most highly valued when printed in, refereed journals, is being challenged. Any early model of electronic communication proposed by Lancaster [5], and modernized by Hurd [6], bypasses printed journals, indexes, and abstracting tools and suggests that scientific information dissemination will eventually be purely electronic. In the light of the escalating cost to libraries for purchasing and archiving printed scholarly journals, electronic journals may prove to become the only alternative for maintaining an active platform for scientific scholarly communication, Tenopir and King [7], Odlyzko [8] and Walker [9].

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III. Aerospace and Defense Resources (AERADE) Pioneering Initiatives in Promoting the Use of Aerospace Electronic Information Resources

The Aerospace Information Management – UK (AIM-UK) project –found compelling evidence of „under-utilization‟ of „electronic information resources‟ by the aerospace scientists and engineers. It recommended a number of initiatives to raise awareness and improve access to useful electronic information resources, and to reduce the threat of „information overload‟. In particular, there was a call to establish an Internet gateway and portal to the aerospace and defense community that would act as a “jumping-off-point” for effective exploration and retrieval of information on the World Wide Web. Launched in November, 1999, AERADE is specifically designed to meet this need. It is an initiative developed by the Cranfield University to enable aerospace and defense experts to find relevant information on the Internet. Today, the reports archive is a historical collection of over 10,000 significant technical papers and reports produced by the Aeronautic Research Council (ARC) and the National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics (NACA), Hanley; Harrington and Blagden, [10].

IV. The Role of IAIN (International Aerospace Information Network) towards International Cooperation and Resource Sharing of Aerospace Electronic Information Resources

For the effectiveness of the research and development (R&D) process, it is a well understood fact that the identification, acquisition, and utilization of scientific and technical information is of supreme importance. In the year 1994, a working group was established to examine the issues, strategies, and actions required to develop a mechanism for improving the access to, and use of aerospace and aerospace-related information by developing a self-sustaining, worldwide network of partner organizations committed to sharing their data and information resources. It was decided by the working group that the Internet would be the most suitable vehicle and channel to provide such a mechanism and the work group decided to develop a prototype International Aerospace Information Network (IAIN) Web site, providing a catalogue of aerospace information sources from which information searches can be launched. So, the mission of IAIN was to facilitate access to, use, and understanding of aerospace and aerospace related information world-wide. It was decided that IAIN will develop a prototype organizational and technical infrastructure that will serve the aerospace research scientists and engineer and the broader community of policy analysts, resource managers, educators, and to some extent, the general public, Blados[11].

V. Review of Literature

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interplay between document and people sources can be explained by the nature of the design task. The study also revealed that, people become a critical source of information because they can explain and argue about why specific decisions were made and what purpose is served by individual parts of the design. This interesting study concludes by briefly outlining how computer systems could support searches for people. Given the immense practical importance of searches for people there seems to be a large need for such computer systems and, consequently, for addressing the open research questions involved in designing them.

Tucci, V.K., [13], in his study has pointed out that computer scientists and engineers are ahead of other disciplines in desiring change and have advanced information-gathering habits. Adjustments and changes to policies and services had to be initiated quickly since the role of the library is diminishing for this segment of the Faculty of the Schools of Science and Engineering at The College of New Jersey, (TCNJ) user population and they were in danger of migrating away from the library to other information sources. Changes included replacing print journals with online-only versions of the journals, developing new interlibrary loan and acquisition policies and processes and subscribing to a major engineering and computer science resource (IEEE Xplore), but even more important is initiating a dialogue with faculty via the focus groups.

Hemminger, et al., [14], opine in their paper that the information seeking behavior of academic scientists is being transformed by the availability of electronic resources for searching, retrieving and reading scholarly materials. The authors conducted a census based survey of academic science researchers at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill to capture their current information seeking behavior. Nine hundred and two subjects (26%) completed a 15-minute web-based survey. Significant changes in information seeking behavior were found, including increased reliance on web based resources, fewer visits to the library, and almost entirely electronic communication of information. The results can guide libraries and other information service organizations as they adapt to meet the needs of today‟s information searchers. The survey tool and protocol used in this study have been adopted for use in a nationwide survey of the information seeking behavior of academic scientists.

Mahapatra, G., [15], mentions that, with regard to the information needs of scientists and technologists in the electronic formats, maximum number of middle level executives (i.e., E-l to E-4 executives) need electronic databases. The factual databases are more needed

among the higher-level executives (i.e., in

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Hemminger, Lown and Adams, et al., [16], surveyed a population of 2,063 academic researchers in natural science, engineering and medical sciences from five research universities in the United States. The most significant findings reflected the dominant utilization of electronic methods for searching and accessing scholarly content. The researchers in the five universities are rather similar in the information seeking behavior. The findings have implications for academic libraries who must adapt to continue to support the needs of the scientists. Another notable trend observed by the authors is that novel forms of scholarly communication such as collaborative information sharing technology are evolving gradually. This may the beginning of a more significant transformative change particularly in sharing information within laboratories or groups or among multisite collaborations. Many professors have begun utilizing blogs, wikis and multimedia (e.g., YouTube) to communicate with their colleagues or students. Collaborative search systems (I-SPY), Academic social bookmarking systems (CiteULike), open shared rankings and reviews (Faculty 1000, Adobe Acrobat 8.0), open access journals (PubMedCentral, BioMedCentral, PLoS), and online sharing bibliographic databases and annotations (Connotea) are all examples of new scholarly communication information technologies. The adoption of these is consistent among the respondents across the five universities.

Kumar, A., et al., [17], in their study on information seeking behavior by the research scholars and faculty members of the Kurukshetra University bring to our attention that, providing high speed Internet connectivity has a direct reflection on the (a) speedy access to utilization of information for research work, education work, writing and presenting papers, administrative work, entertainment and also for downloading relevant materials. The library should be better provisioned to conduct training programmes for the information professionals so that they are aware of different search interfaces, latest changes in the journal web-sites and develop sophisticated searching and retrieval techniques. Most of the respondents in this study suggested that the University should take the necessary steps to utilize the library resources, improved Internet connectivity and awareness programmes to the students about e-Journals and e-Resources available in INFLIBNET.

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information. It is also observed that engineers read less than scientists, they use literature and libraries less, and seldom use information services which are directly oriented to them. They are more likely to use specific forms of literature such as handbooks, standards, specifications, and technical reports, Allen [21].

VI. CSIR-National Aerospace Laboratories, Bangalore

The National Aerospace Laboratories is India‟s premier civil aviation R&D aerospace research organization in the country. Its main mandate is the „Development of aerospace technologies with strong science content and with a view on their practical application to the design and construction of flight vehicles‟. NAL is also required „to use its aerospace technology base for general industrial applications‟. „Technology‟ would be its core engine-driver for the future. NAL is also best known for its main sophisticated aerospace R&D testing facilities which are not only unique for this country but also comparable to similar facilities elsewhere in the world.

VII. Objectives of the Study

To determine Association of Demographic Variables versus the „Feelings of Users

towards Use of

E-Resources‟ among the aerospace scientists and engineers of Bangalore.

To ascertain whether the percentage of preference of Association of Demographic Variables versus „Feelings of Users towards Use of E- Resources‟ by the aerospace engineers and scientists are approximately the same.

To study whether similar patterns exist (homogeneity) of Association of Demographic Variables versus „Feelings of Users towards Use of E-Resources‟ amongst the aerospace scientists and engineers of Bangalore.

VIII. Null Hypotheses

There is no association between the six demographic variables, namely: (a) Category wise distribution of the respondents, (b) Occupation, (c) Gender, (d) Age, (e) Qualification and (f) Specialization of the Aerospace Scientists and Engineers with the „Feelings of Users of Electronic Information Resources‟ viz., (1) I can do better research because of availability of electronic information resources, (2) I need to rely on librarians more when searching for electronic information resources, (3) It is much better to find needed information online, (4) I prefer access to electronic information resources than print resources.

IX. Materials and Methods

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aerospace scientists and engineers belonging to these 16 aerospace organizations. A total number of 612 questionnaires were received back finally 583 (89.7%) were selected for the study which were found suitable for the study.

A survey questionnaire has been used to conduct this research study. The total population size of this research study is restricted to the 1220 aerospace scientists and engineers in Bangalore. The distribution of Source Data is indicated in Table 1. Random sampling technique has been used for selection of the sample size.

Table-1: Distribution of Source Data (Sample Size) Sl.

No.

Organizations No. of Questionnaires

distributed

No. of Questionnaires

received

No. of usable questionnaires

usable

1. ADA 67 63 58

2. AFTC 19 16 15

3. ADE 14 12 12

4. ASTE 33 30 29

5. CABS 16 15 14

6. CEMILAC 33 30 29

7. C-MMACS 8 6 6

8. DARE 11 9 9

9. LRDE 5 3 2

10. GTRE 24 22 21

11. HAL 144 140 134

12. IAM 40 36 33

13. ISRO-ISTRAC

25 24 22

14. IISc 38 37 34

15. JNCASR 5 3 1

16. NAL 168 166 164

Total 650 612 583 (89.7%)

Geographical Boundary of the Study (16 Prominent Aerospace Organizations of Bangalore, INDIA).

Key: ADA=Aeronautical Development Agency, AFTC=Air Force Technical College,

ADE=Aeronautical Development Establishment, ASTE=Aircraft Systems Testing Establishment, CABS=Centre for Airborne Systems, CEMILAC=Centre for Military Airworthiness and Certification, C-MMACS=Centre for Mathematical Modeling and Computer Simulation, DARE=Defense Avionics Research Establishment,

LRDE=Electronics and Radar Development Establishment, GTRE=Gas Turbine Research Establishment, HAL=Hindustan Aeronautics Limited, IAM=Institute of Aerospace Medicine, ISRO-ISTRAC=Indian Space Research Organization,

IISc=Indian Institute of Science, JNCASR=Jawaharlal Nehru Centre for Advanced Scientific Research, NAL=National Aerospace Laboratories.

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Qualification and (f) Specialization of the Aerospace Scientists and Engineers with the

„Feelings of Aerospace Scientists/Engineers towards

e-Resources‟, viz., (1) I can do better research because of availability of electronic

information resources, (2)

I need to rely on librarians more when searching for electronic information resources, (3) It is much better to find needed information online, (4) I prefer access to electronic information resources than print resources are analyzed in Table 2.

Table 2

Association of Demographic Variables versus Feelings of Users towards Use of e-Resources

CATEGORY WISE DISTRIBUTION

Category V/s. Feelings Towards Use of e-Resources

Total Strongly

Disagree Disagree Uncertain Agree Strongly

Aerospace Scientist 2 4 32 171 86 295

(0.7) (1.4) (10.8) (58.0) (29.2) (100.0)

Aerospace Engineer 1 7 30 172 78 288

(0.3) (2.4) (10.4) (59.7) (27.1) (100.0)

Total 3 11 62 343 164 583

Percent (0.5) (1.9) (10.6) (58.8) (28.1) (100.0) Chi-Square and

P Value

2

=1.525, P = 0.822

OCCUPATION PROFILE

Occupation V/s. Feelings Towards Use of e-Resources

Total Strongly

Disagree Disagree Uncertain Agree Strongly Scientific/

R & D

1 6 35 199 86 327

(0.3) (1.8) (10.7) (60.9) (26.3) (100.0)

Armed Forces 1 2 10 42 26 81

(1.2) (2.5) (12.3) (51.9) (32.1) (100.0) Teaching &

Research

0 0 2 22 13 37

(0.0) (0.0) (5.4) (59.5) (35.1) (100.0)

Managers 1 3 15 80 39 138

(0.7) (2.2) (10.9) (58.0) (28.3) (100.0)

Total 3 11 62 343 164 583

Percent (0.5) (1.9) (10.6) (58.8) (28.1) (100.0) Chi-Square and

P Value

2

=5.901, P = 0.921

GENDER PROFILE

Gender V/s. Feelings Towards Use of e-Resources

Total Strongly

Disagree Disagree Uncertain Agree Strongly

Female 0 2 7 43 19 71

(0.0) (2.8) (9.9) (60.6) (26.8) (100.0)

Male 3 9 55 300 145 512

(0.6) (1.8) (10.7) (58.6) (28.3) (100.0)

Total 3 11 62 343 164 583

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Chi-Square and and P Value

2

=0.927, P = 0.921

AGE-GROUP

Age Group V/s. Feelings Towards Use of e-Resources

Total Strongly

Disagree Disagree Uncertain Agree Strongly

21-30 1 5 18 117 69 210

(0.5) (2.4) (8.6) (55.7) (32.9) (100.0)

31-40 1 2 22 103 52 180

(0.6) (1.1) (12.2) (57.2) (28.9) (100.0)

41-50 1 3 13 84 29 130

(0.8) (2.3) (10.0) (64.6) (22.3) (100.0)

51-60 0 1 9 39 14 63

(0.0) (1.6) (14.3) (61.9) (22.2) (100.0)

Total 3 11 62 343 164 583

Percentage (0.5) (1.9) (10.6) (58.8) (28.1) (100.0) Chi-Square and

P Value

2

=8.923, P = 0.709

QUALIFICATION

Qualification V/s. Feelings Towards Use of e-Resources

Total Strongly

Disagree Disagree Uncertain Agree Strongly

Doctorate Degree 0 2 9 53 22 86

(0.0) (2.3) (10.5) (61.6) (25.6) (100.0)

Master’s Degree 1 4 23 155 74 257

(0.4) (1.6) (8.9) (60.3) (28.8) (100.0)

Bachelor’s Degree 2 5 30 131 68 236

(0.8) (2.1) (12.7) (55.5) (28.8) (100.0)

Diploma 0 0 0 4 0 4

(0.0) (0.0) (0.0) (100.0) (0.0) (100.0)

Total 3 11 62 343 164 583

Percent (0.5) (1.9) (10.6) (58.8) (28.1) (100.0) Chi-Square and

P Value

2

=6.709, P = 0.876

SPECIALIZATION

Specialization V/s. Feelings Towards Use of e-Resources

Total Strongly

Disagree Disagree Uncertain Agree Strongly

Thermal & Fluid Sciences

0 3 9 52 21 85

(0.0) (3.5) (10.6) (61.2) (24.7) (100.0) Avionics, Guidance

and Control

0 1 10 74 31 116

(0.0) (0.9) (8.6) (63.8) (26.7) (100.0) Aerospace

Structures and Allied Mechanical

Sciences

0 0 6 37 25 68

(0.0) (0.0) (8.8) (54.4) (36.8) (100.0)

Materials and Metallurgy

0 1 4 18 6 29

(0.0) (3.4) (13.8) (62.1) (20.7) (100.0)

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and other Allied

Disciplines (0.0) (4.3) (17.0) (51.1) (27.7) (100.0) General

Engineering and Support Sciences

3 4 25 138 68 238

(1.3) (1.7) (10.5) (58.0) (28.6) (100.0)

Total 3 11 62 343 164 583

Percent (0.5) (1.9) (10.6) (58.8) (28.1) (100.0) Chi – Square and

P Value

2

=16.232, P = 0.702

Key1: Feelings of Aerospace Scientists / Engineers towards Use of e-Resources: (1)

I can do better research because of availability of electronic information resources, (2) I need to rely on librarians more when searching for electronic information resources, (3) It is much better to find needed information online, (4) I prefer access to electronic information resources than print resources.

Key2: Figures in Brackets indicate Percentages

X. Results and Discussion

The 2 test indicates that the demographic variables, viz., Category Wise Distribution of the Respondents, Occupation Profile, Gender, Age-Group, Qualification and Specialization by the „Feeling of Users towards use of Electronic Information Resources‟ have no significant association.

XI. Conclusion

The main conclusions that the authors would like to infer in this paper are:

The 2 test indicates that the demographic variables, viz., Category Wise Distribution of the Respondents, Occupation Profile, Gender, Age-Group, Qualification and Specialization by the „Feeling of Users towards Use of Electronic Information Resources‟ have no significant association.

This implies that the percentage of preference for the above mentioned demographic variables are approximately the same [Uniformly distributed].

XII. Acknowledgements

The authors are very grateful to Director, NAL and Dr J S Mathur, Head, KTMD for supporting this research work.

XIII. References

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Degree, School of Information and Library Science, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill.

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About the Authors

Dr Ramachandran Guruprasad received his MLIS degree from Annamalai University (1994), MSc in Information Technology from Karnataka State Open University (2006) and a Ph.D. Degree in Library and Information from the University of Mysore (2010). He has two international books to his credit, several book chapters, international conference presentations and national and international journal publications. His areas of interest and specialization include: analyzing the „Use Patterns of Electronic Information Resources among Scientists, Engineers and Technologists‟, „Digital Content Management‟, „Digital Video Archiving‟. He has also played a significant role as a Digital Footage expert in research, planning and execution of several R&D documentaries in the Aerospace Domain. Presently he works at the Knowledge and Technology Management Division, CSIR-NAL, Bangalore as a research scientist.

Figure

Table-1: Distribution of Source Data (Sample Size) No. of Questionnaires

Table 1.

Distribution of Source Data Sample Size No of Questionnaires . View in document p.8
Table-1: Distribution of Source Data (Sample Size) Organizations

Table 1.

Distribution of Source Data Sample Size Organizations . View in document p.8
Table 2 Association of Demographic Variables versus Feelings of Users towards Use of e-

Table 2.

Association of Demographic Variables versus Feelings of Users towards Use of e . View in document p.9