Book Review: Business Analysis

Now in its third run, Business Analysis is a key text for anyone eager to use their LIS qualification outside of the traditional library setting. Placing the reader squarely in the IT world, Business Analysis discusses the historical context, development, and future of the discipline, whilst providing the reader with professional techniques, process models and skills frameworks. The text serves as a handbook for those developing information systems to fulfil business operations, whilst also providing a very balanced and valid introduction to the relatively new discipline of business analysis. Filling the gap (read, gigantic fissure) between business needs and business change solutions, the role and skillset of a business analyst has too often been overlooked, often due to the lack of a standard definition across industries. However, this BCS published text standardises and validates the experience and knowledge base of this specialist profession.

Not only for the Business Analyst, I would recommend this book to anyone undergoing change, or looking to instigate change in their workplace.

 

Paul, D., Cadle, J., and Yeates, D. (2014). Business Analysis, 3rd edition. Swindon, BCS Learning & Development Ltd.

 

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Book Review: Information Literacy beyond Library 2.0

A sequel to Information Literacy meets Library 2.0, Information Literacy beyond Library 2.0 is in my opinion, a must read for all information professionals. Exploring the shift of the information environment triggered by social and mobile channels, the contributors within this text explore the impact of technology trends on information as well as digital consumption and literacy, whilst sharing case studies to demonstrate trends and suggest theories. Questions are asked, new ways-of-working and theoretical frameworks are introduced, all in an effort to respond to the ‘new’ information literacy.

Key case studies include: Using games as treatments and creative triggers: a promising strategy for information literacy, written by Susan Boyle; and Informed cyberlearning: a case study, by Hilary Hughes.

 

Godwin, P and Parker, J. (2012). Information Literacy Beyond Library 2.0. London: Facet Publishing.

Book Review: Essential Thesaurus Construction

Vanda Broughton’s book Essential Thesaurus Construction is a great introduction to the thesaurus. Gleaning material from the MA in Information and Library Studies course that Broughton teaches at University College London, the volume provides an insight into the principles and practice of thesaurus construction, as well as providing broader application principles for vocabulary and retrieval tools.

Outlining the difference between a thesaurus used in information work, and a thesaurus providing synonyms and antonyms, Broughton provides a basic manual in indexing tools for both LIS students and practitioners alike. Highlights include: classification schemes; special thesauri; building and maintaining a thesaurus – structures, hierarchy and software.

 

Broughton, V. (2006). Essential Thesaurus Construction. London: Facet Publishing.

Book review: The Number Mysteries

This book comes with the offer of a million dollars. Well, sort of. Each chapter of Marcus Du Sautoy’s book reveals a mathematical mystery. Mathematical mysteries, all of which come with a cash prize from Mr. Landon Clay when solved. Du Sautoy discusses the real-life application of mathematics throughout, relating big mathematical themes back to every-day interests: sports, Google, pomegranates and tossing coins.

The book functions as both a very accessible piece of nonfiction for the generalist reader, and also a reference guide to dig deeper into the themes and ideas presented in the text. The book is littered with interjections: web addresses, QR codes, apps, games, videos, Continuing Education courses, working as a wonderful guide, engaging with the world of mathematics outside of the book itself.

Du Sautoy’s book is wonderfully approachable for the uninitiated, applying textbook mathematics to science, technology, the economy – the future of our planet even. A valuable companion to students and general-readers alike.

 

Du Sautoy, M. (2010). The Number Mysteries:A Mathematical Odyssey Through Everyday LIfe. London: 4th Estate.