Senior Research Fellow
Indian Agricultural Statistics Research Institute (IASRI)
Library Avenue, Pusa, New Delhi
Information is an important commodity and a vital resource
needed for development in addition to other resources. The
accessibility of the information to its potential user is
only if it is available in organized and consolidated form.
The information products issued by industrial, commercial,
public service, or similar organizations, as promotional
material for the target audience. These products are
newsletters, house journals, Trend reportand state- of –the- art
A product generated out of services to be
provided to the users. It is a kind of
consolidation and presentation process giving
tangibility to information. Information
publication often simple in format and crisp
in style provides special information for a
TYPES OF INFORAMTION PRODUCTS
Libraries and information centers offer today a variety of
information products and services keeping in view the demand
for information from different categories of users. Some of
these varieties of information products are:
In house journals.
A regular publication focused on a particular subject, such as the
news of a special interest group. It may have announcements and
events listings. It may be in print or sent via electronic mail.
Newsletters are published by societies, associations, companies,
etc. to provide information of interest to their members or
employees. Some newsletters are created as money-making
ventures and sold directly to subscribers.
Newsletter can be defined as “a serial consisting of one or a
few pages in print, electronic or any other form, containing
recent information or news which is of interest to a special
or particular group of users and which is published
periodically . Organizations often issue newsletters to
members or subscribers”.
According to Encyclopaedia of Britannica, Newsletters are
publication issued by organizations, often simple in format
and crisp in style, that provides special information for a
Ex . OCLC Newsletter, IASLIC Newsletter.
Types of Newsletters
Newsletters can be categorized into different types
based on the publishing organizations
R&D Organizations (National and International);
Associations (National and International);
Public Sector Undertakings;
Private Institutions; and
Academic Institutions, etc.
Newsletters are publications, which are simple in format and
provide speedy information for a definite group of audience. The
newsletters are relatively easy, fast and inexpensive to produce.
The Newsletter serves as a medium to:
Publicize or promote products and services of the institutions;
Announce current and forthcoming events like conferences,
seminars or workshops; and
Communicate information about social and cultural activities,
personnel information , appointments, promotions, transfers,
retirements, obituaries, etc. of the concerned institution(s).
Newsletters published and distributed electronically over the
computer networks are known as electronic newsletters. ENewsletters started appearing in 1990s and have proliferated
since then. These are distributed by e-mail to people who
voluntarily subscribe to them online. Initially, e-newsletters
contained hyperlinks to web pages – a method employed by
website operators to draw users to their sites.
E-mail newsletters are convenient and delivered straight to the
user’s information desk;
E-mail newsletters have timely information and real-time
E-mail. newsletters are informative and keep users up-to-date
A product, system, or design that represents the most
advanced degree if technical achievement in its field at the
present time. In the construction of new facilities, libraries
typically strive for state-of-the-art design and technology but
must often settle fir what is financially feasible.
The state-of-the-art reports are of several types. They vary
marginally in the presentation of the content. However their
main purpose is to present consolidated information
available in various forms and to repackage the same in a
condensed form for the users.
The need for consulting this type of source arises when a
particular user desire to know about the development of a
particular area in which he has not been interested so long. This
requires basically consolidation work.
This category of reference source is generally serial publications
but they differ in frequency and format subject periodicals having
regular frequency. They contain articles dealing with current and
significant trends of development in a specific field. They are
compiled from primary sources but are arranged according to
some definite plan.
They deal with already published knowledge in a more organized and
systematic way, they are more frequently referred to than the primary sources
because they provide organized and consolidated information in useful
packages which are self-sufficient. They are published periodically to present
in a suitable form, analysis of the progress made through research and
The state-of-the-art reports can be grouped into three categories (for the sake
Reviews and Surveys:
– ex. Reviews: Annual Review of Information Science and Technology.
– Surveys: National Readership Survey’ Annual. London:- National
Readership Surveys Ltd.,1989.
Advances and Progresses:
•ex. Advances: Advances in Librarianship. New York: Seminar Press, 1971.
– Ex. Trends in cancer Research. New York: World Health
A trend Report is one such tool which is designed to help the
specialist reader by acquainting them with the recent
developments and research conducted in the particular
subject. So they can utilize their time more effectively in
According to M.A.Gopinath “a trend report is an
exposition of a subject, giving an account of general direction
of research in the subject based on the review of the documents
on current developments. The trend report helps the specialist
reader in productive utilization of his time and in conversation
of the research potential.”
The main purpose of a Trend Report is to fulfill the specific information
requirement of a specialist reader on a particular subject. It provides
an account of the general direction of research in the subject based on a
review of the documents on current developments. Trend report is a highly
useful IAC (Information Analysis and Consolidation) product, which
facilitates the specialists in their research work. These may be adhoc
documents in a particular subject or sometimes serial publications.
It provides first hand information about the research and documents on
current development work that are being carried out in a country or
through the world, in a consolidated form. This saves the time of the
researcher, which can be utilized effectively for the research work. Trend
reports are generally produced in house by various R & D organizations.
The Trend Reports are also produced by International
organizations like World Bank. UNESCO, FAO etc. and by other
Examples of Trend Reports:
FAO (1979) Development and Forest Resources in the Asia
and Far East Region: Trend and Perspectives. Rome: FAO.
World Bank. (1989). Trend in Developing Economics 1989.
Washington D.C.: World Bank.
In-house journal is a serial publication issued by an industrial,
commercial, public service or a similar organization to inform
the public of its performance and style of functioning. It also
serves as a medium to know the reaction and opinion of the
public about its performance. For an organization, the public
consists of its employees, customers, dealers, retailers of its
products, its shareholders, and the government that have social
control over it.
The functions of the house journal are to:
Improve business and industrial relations;
Keep employees and customers in the picture;
Serve as useful platform for communicating management’s
Promote and enhance the image of the management as well as
of the organization among its employees and customers; and
Provide an objective news service.
Types of House Journals
There are three broad categories of house journals –
Combinations of both.
Internal house journal is published for employees or members
of the organization, whereas external house journal is brought
out for customers or potential customers of the organization.
Combination publications try to do both.
Internal House Journal
Internal house journal is brought out for the employees of the
organization and is meant for internal circulation. Its prime
aim is to keep the employees of the organization informed of
the welfare measures and the concern of the organization for
its employees. It also aims at providing a forum for the
employees to express their views including their grievances.
Therefore, it serves as a forum for a two-way communication,
thereby promoting the healthy growth of an organization.
Ex . NCR world , John H. Patterson, United Nation, 1887.
External House Journal
The external house journals are designed for customers or
potential customers of an organization and are meant for
external circulation. Based upon their contents, they can
further be broadly grouped into three categories:
The first category is that of a scholarly journal and can be
equated in almost every respect with a standard technical
The second category is the magazine. This contains general
non-technical information and information about products of
the organization, without technical details.
The third category is the periodical catalogue, which is similar
to a trade catalogue. The basic difference between this and the
trade catalogue is, that the former is issued under the same title
at regular intervals, just like a periodical publication.
Ex. The Travelers Insurance, Companies at Hartford, 1865.
Characteristics of House Journals
They are produced by the sponsoring organization for
enhancing the image of the organization and for promoting its
products and services,
They are usually distributed free to the employees and
Financial support is provided through budget allocation by the
They carry no advertisements except that of the sponsoring
They are printed on good quality art paper and are usually
colourful and attractive.
A bibliography is an organized list of primary or other sources
related to a given subject(s) or persons. It is usually arranged
alphabetically by author or chronologically or topic-wise. It
may be comprehensive or selective. It may be published as a
part of large work or separate work. The basic aim of a
bibliography is to assist the user in locating the existence of
or identifying a book or any other material which may be of
interest to him. A well prepared bibliography provide a
definitive coverage of a document over a period of time within
Ex. ASLIB book list: monthly list of recommended scientific
& technical book with annotations, London, ASLIB, Vol.11935-monthly,
Types of Bibliographies
Commonly recognized types of systematic bibliography are given bellow:
Universal bibliography (including printing catalogue of great national
libraries) (e.g. bibliotheca universalis).
National bibliography (e.g. Indian national bibliography).
Trade bibliography (e.g. Cumulative book index, Indian book in print).
Bibliography of anonymous and pseudonymous work (Dictionary of
anonymous and pseudonymous literature).
Selective or elective bibliography (e.g. World’s best book).
List of periodicals (Ulrich’s internationals periodical's directory).
List of theses, dissertation (e.g. Indian dissertation abstract).
Author bibliography (e.g. Chaucer: a bibliography manual).
Subject bibliography (e.g. Library literature)
Bibliography of bibliographies (e.g. bibliographic index).
A review is a survey of primary literature. It aim to digest
and correlate the literature over a given period. It also
indicates the developments and trends in the field
concerned. It may appear as a collection of papers on regular
basis (annual or quarterly or monthly) or in the form of an
article in the periodical. A review provides background
information to a new problem in a suitable from and serves
as a key to literature.
Ex. Advances in nuclear science and technology, 1962-, New
York Academic Press, Irregular.
A directory is a list of names and addresses of persons,
organizations, manufactures, or periodicals. It may list
information in way which best service the requirements of its
users so as to enable them to get the required information
readily. The word directory may or may not appear in the title.
A directory is define “ a list of persons or organization
systematically arranged, usually in alphabetic or classed
order, giving addresses, affiliation, etc., for individuals and
addresses, officers, functions, and similar data for
Ex. World of learning, 1947-, Annual.
Types of Directories
We may recognize the following types of directories:
General: International, national/regional, local.
Others: Scientific and learned societies, trade,
Majority of directories are brought out by commercial
firms. Telephone companies also publish a very large
number of directories. Government agencies form a
large publisher in this area. Associations bring out
directories relating to their members.
Indexing and Abstracting Periodicals
An Indexing Periodical is a regularly issued compilation of titles of
articles that appear in current primary source journals, Generally , titles
of new books, pamphlets,etc.,are also included.
Ex. Applied science and technology index, New York, Wilson, 1913-,
An Abstracting Periodicals “ is a regularly issued compilation of
concise summaries of (1) significant articles that appear in current
primary source journals, and (2) important new research monograph,
reports, patents, and other primary source publications in that field.”
An Abstracting Periodical serves as an index, a tool for retrieval of
information on a specific subject and provides survey of information on a
specific subject and provide survey of current state of the art about the
Ex. Indian science abstract, Delhi, Indian National Scientific
Documentation Centre ,Vol.1-,1965-, Monthly.
Bibliography of bibliographies
A Bibliography of bibliographies lists of Bibliographies
which direct readers to useful bibliographies through
subject , name of an individual place, institutions etc. The
bibliographies referred to may be in the form of a separately
published book or part of the book or part of a periodical
article or some other type of document. As the number of
bibliographies published every year is large, therefore,
Bibliography of bibliographies are highly selective in nature.
Ex. Bibliographic index , cumulative Bibliography of
bibliographies , 1937-, New York, Wilson, 1938.
A Union Catalogue is an important tool for a librarian. It is
“ a Catalogue listing in one sequence the holdings or part of
the holdings two or more libraries.” we may recognize local,
regional and national union catalogues. Further division may
be done on the basis of the kinds of material included, e.g.,
books, periodicals, films, etc.
A Union Catalogue can serve the following function:
To serve as a tool for the location of a document
To identify a given document for which bibliographic
information is provided.
To help in inter library loan
To serve as a tool for selection of documents
To help to achieve coordination in the acquisition and
selection programme of a group of libraries
To reveal the total document resources of libraries in a given
geographical region, thereby indicating the strengths and
weaknesses of the holdings in that area.
Ex. Union Catalogue of learned periodical publications in
South Asia, compiled by S. R. Ranganathan, etc.,vol.1:
physical and biological sciences, Delhi, ILA,1953.
Information products (Newsletters, In- house journal, trend
reports, State-of-the-art reports etc.) plays important role in
specific field because they provides the bird’s eye view of a
Information explosion and availability of information in
variety of languages and formats creates problems for their
effective use. Information consolidation and repackaging can
solve these problems to a great extent. Newsletters, In- house
journal, trend reports, State-of-the-art report etc. are examples
of information consolidation and repackaging which can
overcome the barriers in the use of information.
1. Ane’s Encyclopedia dictionary of Library and Information
Science. vol.2,Dr.Amjad Ali, 2006.
2. Encyclopaedia of Britannica, v.8, p.661,1768.
3. Krishan Kumar ,Reference services, 4th rev. ed., 1991.
4. Pauline. Handbook for information systems and Services.
Paris: UNESCO, 1977.