Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to contribute to understandings of how documents are experienced by looking to work in reception studies for methodological examples. Based on a review of research from literary studies, communication studies and museum studies, it identifies existing approaches and challenges. Specifically, it draws attention to problems cited in relation to small-scale user studies and suggests an alternative approach that focusses on how infrastructures influence experience. Design/methodology/approach – This paper presents data collected from over a year of ethnographic work at a cultural archive and exhibition space and analyses the implications of infrastructural features such as institutional organization, database structures and the organization of physical space for making available certain modes of reception. Findings – This research suggests that infrastructure provides a useful perspective on how experiences of documents are influenced by larger systems. Research limitations/implications – This research was conducted to explore the implications of an alternative research methodology. Based on the ethnographic study presented, it suggests that this approach produces results that warrant further work. However, as it is intended only to be a test case, its scope is limited, and future research following the approach discussed here should more fully engage with specific findings in relation to the experience of documents. Originality/value – This paper presents an alternative approach to studying the experience of documents that responds to limitations in previous work. The research presented suggests that infrastructures can reveal ways that the experience is shared across contexts, shifting discussions from individuals and objects to technical systems, institutions and social structures.
Journal of Documentation – Emerald Publishing
Published: Jan 11, 2016
It’s your single place to instantly
discover and read the research
that matters to you.
Enjoy affordable access to
over 18 million articles from more than
15,000 peer-reviewed journals.
All for just $49/month
Query the DeepDyve database, plus search all of PubMed and Google Scholar seamlessly
Save any article or search result from DeepDyve, PubMed, and Google Scholar... all in one place.
Get unlimited, online access to over 18 million full-text articles from more than 15,000 scientific journals.
Read from thousands of the leading scholarly journals from SpringerNature, Elsevier, Wiley-Blackwell, Oxford University Press and more.
All the latest content is available, no embargo periods.
“Hi guys, I cannot tell you how much I love this resource. Incredible. I really believe you've hit the nail on the head with this site in regards to solving the research-purchase issue.”Daniel C.
“Whoa! It’s like Spotify but for academic articles.”@Phil_Robichaud
“I must say, @deepdyve is a fabulous solution to the independent researcher's problem of #access to #information.”@deepthiw
“My last article couldn't be possible without the platform @deepdyve that makes journal papers cheaper.”@JoseServera