Ali S. Al-Aufi

Publications

1 Digital Scholarship and Disciplinary Culture: An Investigation of Sultan Qaboos University, Oman

Authors: Ali S. Al-Aufi, Paul Genoni

Abstract:

The emergence of networked information and communication has transformed the accessibility and delivery of scholarly information and fundamentally impacted on the processes of research and scholarly communication. The purpose of this study is to investigate disciplinary differences in the use of networked information for research and scholarly communication at Sultan Qaboos University, Oman. This study has produced quantitative data about how and why academics within different disciplines utilize networked information that is made available either internally through the university library, or externally through networked services accessed by the Internet. The results indicate some significant differences between the attitudes and practice of academics in the science disciplines when compared to those from the social sciences and humanities. While respondents from science disciplines show overall longer and more frequent use of networked information, respondents from humanities and social sciences indicated more positive attitudes and a greater degree of satisfaction toward library networked services.

Keywords: Academics, Scholarly Communication, oman, arab world, Disciplinary Culture, Networked Information, Sultan QaboosUniversity

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Abstracts

1 Citizens’ Expectations, Motivations, and Evaluation of Participatory Use of Social Media Tools for Civic Engagement in Oman

Authors: Ali S. Al-Aufi, Ibrahim S. Al-Harthi, Yousuf S. AlHinai, Ali H.S. Al-Badi, Zahran S. Al-Salti

Abstract:

Social media tools have currently been leading a major change in the flow and use of information for different life aspects within people and between people and their governments. They represent powerful channels for direct exchanges of information, ideas, and suggestions for purposes of civic participation. The current study aims at investigating Omani citizens’ perceptions, expectations, and motivations of their uses of social media tools to interact with the government for civic participation. A quantitative methodology was used to collect data through self-administered questionnaires from a random sample of university students and staff drawn from Sultan Qaboos University, considering them as well-informed and typically active users of social media. The literature was comprehensively reviewed to retrieve relevant empirical studies that particularly investigated the use of social media for civic engagement which provided a basis for the construct of the questionnaire; taken into consideration the delineated dimensions of perceptions, expectations, and motivations. The findings of the study offer practical and useful recommendations for governmental units in Oman and similar contexts in the region to inform better and efficient use of social media tools to interact with citizens in issues related to civic engagement; particularly to make best use of these tools for improving services and developing existing and newer initiatives, and hence, encouraging and strengthening citizens’ involvement for civic engagement.

Keywords: Social Media, Civic Participation, civic engagement, web 2.0, oman, social networking sites

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