LRRT announces winners of the Jesse H. Shera Award for 2003

Contact: Mary Jo Lynch, ORS Director


For Immediate Release

June 13, 2003

LRRT announces winners of the Jesse H. Shera Award for 2003

The Shera Award Committee of the American Library Association (ALA) Library Research Round Table (LRRT) has given the 2003 Jesse H. Shera Award for Distinguished Published Research to “The Impact of the Internet on Public Library use: An Analysis of the Current Consumer Market for Library and Internet Services,” by George D’Elia; Corinne Jorgensen; Joseph Woelfel; and Eleanor Jo Rodger. This article appeared in
Journal of the American Society for Information Science and Technology
, 53 (10): 802-820, 2002.

The $500 award is given annually for a single article published in English during the preceding calendar year. In this year's winning article the authors discuss their research on the relationship between the adult U.S. population's use of the library and its use of the Internet.
The authors developed a consumer model of the adult U.S. market for library and Internet services. Their model is concerned with the choices consumers make between two information providers – the public library and the Internet.
They conclude that current use of the two providers appears to be complementary, but stress that monitoring consumer choices to understand emerging trends and plan for the future is extremely important.

“The article contained timely research in an area of great interest to all librarians,” Chair Christine Avery said. “The authors shed light on how consumers differentiate between information providers and examine what this means to libraries as we plan for the future.
Knowing more about what it is that people value in public libraries and library service - and conversely, what it is that leads consumers to prefer the Internet over the library, is invaluable.”

D’Elia is a professor of
library and information studies, University of Buffalo, The State University of New York.
Jorgensen is an associate professor at the school of information studies, Florida State University, Tallahassee.
Woelfel is a professor of communication, University of Buffalo, The State University of New York.
Rodger is the president of the Urban Libraries Council in Evanston, Ill.

The award will be presented on Saturday, June 21 at the LRRT program, “Chat And All That,” during the ALA Annual Conference in Toronto.

Jesse H. Shera, former dean of the school of library and information science at Case Western University, was known for his outstanding leadership in promoting the importance of research to the effective development of the theory and practice of library and information service.
He died in 1982 and an endowment to support the award was established by LRRT in 1987. For many years LRRT’s Shera Award was given for an outstanding unpublished paper but this was changed in 1998.
Now LRRT offers two Shera awards annually--one for “distinguished published research” and one for “excellence in doctoral research.”

Guidelines for both awards in 2004 will be announced in September 2003 and posted on the LRRT homepage by:
going to, clicking on “Our Association” from the top level navigation, clicking on “Roundtables”, clicking on “LRRT.’

Or clicking on the direct link: