JLIS abstracts

ROBINSON (William H).

ROBINSON (William H). Building a Parliamentary Research Capability. 16,1;1991;34-47

Introduces some theoretical linkages connecting information, legislatures, and democracy. Considers a number of fundamental design issues like how independent of the executive the legislature wishes to position itself, which clients to serve, functional operating values to adopt, the advantages of a parliamentary oversight committee, and other basic design concerns. The next section explores more detailed choice in terms of size and make-up of staff, as well as internal organization. The following two sections address operating style including institutional culture and values, and ways of relating to the outside world of clients and other information providers that will assist the legislative research unit in meeting its objectives in the context of inevitable resource constraints. Concludes with a case study tracing the modes of operation of the Congressional Research Service of the Library of Congress, in an attempt to illustrate some of the key concepts .