Printed and digital resources are equally important! – interview with Assistant Professor Ahmet Börütecene

Photo: Nevin Dogan

Ahmet Börütecene is interaction designer and assistant professor at MDB (Media design and image reproduction) ITN at Campus Norrköping. We had a talk with him about library services and what the library can do to make life easier for students, PhD students and researchers.

Could you tell us a little about your background and your research topics and how you chose this path?

– My background is in three, seemingly very different fields. I have a bachelor’s in Communication design from Istanbul, a master’s in Cinema and multimedia production from Bologna and my PhD from Istanbul was in Interaction design. They may seem very disparate disciplines, but for me the two first have been important for the third. I am now involved in different research projects working on human – AI interaction, extended reality experiences and  citizen-driven smart cities.

How do you use the library? What services and resources are important to you in your work?

– My home library is of course the Campus Norrköping library, and I would say, before the pandemic for sure, that my use of digital and printed resources is 50/50. I use the databases, e-books, printed books, conference proceedings and journals.

Is there any of the library’s services you appreciate more than others?

– The possibility to make purchase suggestions has been very helpful and surprisingly quick. I have been able to get some important books that way.

What in the library services would you like to see improved? 

– It is very annoying that when using e-books, one’s notes made in the book disappears as you “return” it, but I can see this does not only depend on the library. Maybe you could put some pressure on the providers/publishers for standardization and more reader-friendly platforms.

You teach in the master’s programme in design. What do you think every student should know about the library?

– They should know that they can book a time with a librarian to get advice on suitable resources covering the topic they are working on.

From your own experience, what can the library do to ease the life of PhD students?

– Three things. Seminars on how to approach your literature review, showing examples of how searches through the library can be done. And seminars on knowledge management, it could be simply by using techniques based on pen and paper, about how to organize all your notes. Finally, introducing a reference management system, preferably Zotero as it is open source.

Can you give an example of a smart interactive solution for the library?

– A quick idea would be a sticker with a QR-code on your bookshelf at home and when you direct your phone at it you get  “book of the day tips” or you get shown new books within your chosen discipline.

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