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Dissertation Information for Khaled Al-Arfaj

NAME:
- Khaled Al-Arfaj

DEGREE:
- Ph.D.

DISCIPLINE:
- Library and Information Science

SCHOOL:
- Indiana University (USA) (1993)

ADVISORS:
- David Kaser

COMMITTEE MEMBERS:
- George Whitbeck
- Thomas E. Nisonger
- Blaise Cronin
- Barry Rubin

MPACT Status: Fully Complete

Title: The information industry in Saudi Arabia: An analytical study defining information industry policy issues and options through cooperative interaction

Abstract: Recent research in the information policy field highlights the concept of "the information industry" as a possible framework for information policy making. Within this framework, information is considered a national resource, having a market value that contributes to national economic and social growth.
This study attempted to contribute creative insights to information policy initiatives adopted recently in Saudi Arabia. The goal of the study was to provide a systematic analysis of information industry policy issues and options through cooperative interaction among library and information professionals, information industry representative, and planners and decision makers in Saudi Arabia. Such interactive cooperation was the underlying hypothesis of the study.
Two sets of variables comprised the study's conceptual framework. The first set, identified as policy inputs, consisted of five variables: environmental indicators, economic policies, education and Research and Development (R&D) policies, science and technology policies, and government and private sector relations policies. The second set, identified as policy outputs, included six categories of issues relating to information availability, information accessibility, information utilization, information technology, information economics, and information regulations.
The study's methodology involved reviewing the literature, conducting personal interviews, and administering two rounds of policy Delphi questionnaires. Eighty participants responded to the first-round questionnaires and sixty one returned their responses in the second round. Data were analyzed in terms of a descriptive statistical summary, a comparison of responses to selected issues according to participants' backgrounds and/or expertise levels, and a comparison of responses to the first and second rounds. Chi square analysis was used to test the significance associated with these two comparisons.
Study participants considered the Saudi information industry to be economically viable, although some referred to a number of obstacles that might make investment in the information industry risky. Several policy options that could stimulate information industry growth were presented from market development, regulatory, organizational, and social perspectives.
Participants' appraisals of policy options highlighted the following points:
1. there is a need for a governmental policy to ease private sector investment in information services and activities.
2. government support with respect to legal protection of the information industry needs to be enhanced, and certain policy measures to direct the private sector in conducting R&D projects need to be taken.
3. a number of policy options were judged highly desirable but not likely to emerge, including a cooperative policy among Arab countries to Arabize information technology products, and establishing translation centers in Saudi universities and research institutions and a national database of works translated into Arabic.
4. in order to stimulate growth of the information industry some corrective measures to enhance the level of information use are needed. Reasons behind low information use involved professional and political factors, but socially-related problems represent the major causes for low information use in Saudi Arabia.

MPACT Scores for Khaled Al-Arfaj

A = 0
C = 0
A+C = 0
T = 0
G = 0
W = 0
TD = 0
TA = 0
calculated 2008-01-31 06:07:57

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Students under Khaled Al-Arfaj

ADVISEES:
- None

COMMITTEESHIPS:
- None