Constituencies of Use: Representative Usage Scenarios in International Digital Library User Studies, a Case Study on Europeana
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Digital libraries are still being developed independently of the extensive involvement of end users, those who form their constituencies of use. The traditional approach to digital library development is to consult with experts or communities of practice in a particular field and attempt to incorporate recommendations into the interface functionality and service models, whilst user needs are often not comprehensively scoped in advance, at the development stage, or regularly consulted for the purposes of formative and summative evaluation. Recent developments in digital library design concentrate effort on the use of innovative search and browse tools, streamlined techniques for navigation and display, and the provision of personalised areas for search management and information sharing; such developments, however, remain unaligned to any thorough understanding of exactly how user behaviour alters depending on scenario of use, and the problems encountered by end users in task completion within different contexts. This paper reports on the deployment of usage scenarios to evaluate the Europeana digital library v1.0 prototype.