The Discipline of Organizing

Glushko, Robert J., "The Discipline of Organizing," Bulletin of the Association for Information Science and Technology, 40(1), October-November 2013


It is normal to organize our world, but doing so systematically is key and the subject of the book The Discipline of Organizing (TDO). The driving concept is that, while organization of resources is fundamental to library and information science, it is a central issue for many professional fields employing different organizational strategies and descriptive vernacular. To bring the diverse perspectives together, a broadly applicable, abstract framework can be used, based on an assessment of what is being organized, why, how much, when and by what means. These points of analysis of the resources to be organized inform organizational design decisions, considerations of stakeholders and costs and strategic planning for tools and methods. Principles underlying an organization system’s design may draw on frequency of resource use or coordination of items, alphabetic or chronological ordering or unique approaches to manage hybrid and novel resources. The TDO philosophy reflects an information management approach that spans disciplinary silos and avoids field-limited terminology, while building the critical skills of resource organization and management.


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Last updated:

September 20, 2016