Ithaka S+R (part of ITHAKA, which brings us JSTOR and Portico) has published the first of many studies it plans to conduct on the changing research methods and practices of scholars in various disciplines. Supporting the Changing Research Practices of Historians examines the needs of historians and provides suggestions for how research support providers (including libraries) can better serve them.
From their web site:
“Our interviews of faculty and graduate students reveal history as a field in transition. It is characterized by a vast expansion of new sources, widely adopted research practices and communication mechanisms shaped by new technologies, and a small but growing subset of scholars utilizing new methodologies to ask questions or share findings in fresh, unique ways.
Research support providers such as libraries, archives, humanities centers, scholarly societies, and publishers – not to mention academic departments that are often at the front line of educating the next generation of scholars – need to innovate in support of these changes. This report provides context and a set of recommendations that we hope will help.