Teamwork in academic legal research
Every endeavour is achieved as the result of teamwork, and librarians are fundamental members in our team when researching in law. Librarians provide able hands and without them effective research would be an almost impossible mission, especially in the Internet era. Above all, librarians hold the keys to the centres where knowledge is generated.
The active role of librarians
Librarians are acquainted with that active role they play as part of our team. They devote efforts to facilitate the teamwork capacities of patrons.
First, librarians are actively involved in research projects.
They left behind–already for several decades–a passive role that could hamper the creation of knowledge. Librarians have now a hands-on approach in research projects, and are often the best co-authors.
Second, librarians welcomed change in the design of libraries.
Space mutated and invites for teamwork. For example, cubicles that used to hold individual patrons are being replaced by roundtables, where patrons and librarians can jointly generate knowledge. Multiple elements combine within the new habitat: naturally the Internet, while there is also a proliferation of screens, projectors, boards, training-labs, and discussion rooms, to name a few. Librarians are the key to all these elements and to the universe of materials within libraries (stacks and databases). Yes, libraries are temples where knowledge is created.
Third, librarians inspire patrons that enter the temple.
For example, the British Library correctly indicates that it exists for “research, inspiration and enjoyment.” Librarians can therefore trigger the serendipitous finding that researchers eagerly pursue.
Librarians are the bridge between
all existing building blocks.
Legal researchers, amongst other social scientists, should be acquainted with the active role that librarians play as part of a team. Legal science benefits from the fruitful teamwork between researchers and librarians. After all, that teamwork will further result in a common objective: creation, dissemination, and communication of knowledge!
Parise, Agustín (2010) "The 13 Steps of Successful Academic Legal Research," International Journal of Legal Information: Vol. 38 : Iss. 1, Article 4. Available at: scholarship.law.cornell