Abstract

Information literacy was conceived originally as a policy goal in 1974, when Paul Zurkowski expressed the need for establishing a major national program to achieve universal information literacy. Despite such early recognition of its political imprinting, the policy dimension of information literacy has been given scant attention in the academic literature. In order to pave the way toward concrete and coordinated policy measures, this article proposes a stratification of the information literacy discourse into three different perspectives of analysis: (a) sociopolitical perspective: analysis of information literacy as a policy goal (Education to Information); (b) disciplinary perspective: analysis of information literacy as a form of study of information (Culture of Information); (c) cognitive perspective: analysis of information literacy as a form of personal competence (Information Skills). Focusing on the sociopolitical perspective, this article moves on to discuss the view that information literacy is a policy goal crossing the borders of both information and education domains, in that it is an information policy issue that also enters the sphere of influence of education policies. The next sections propose a framework for analyzing and comparing information literacy policies in European countries. The overall aim is to apply a grid of analysis based on a set of variables, suitably defined in order to give a measure of what we call the IL-readiness of a country. Finally, the application of the proposed analysis framework leads to the identification of different policy axes for information literacy.

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Additional Information

ISSN
1559-0682
Print ISSN
0024-2594
Pages
pp. 395-418
Launched on MUSE
2012-01-01
Open Access
No
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