About the Project

Saturday, 24 September 2016

Lost in information? Syrian new Scots’ information literacy way-finding practices


This research is a scoping study that aims to examine the information related experiences and information literacy practices of Syrian new Scots (the Syrian refugees in Scotland) during their resettlement and integration.

The project is led by Dr Konstantina Martzoukou and Professor Simon Burnett (i-school, Robert Gordon University, Aberdeen, Scotland) and is supported by The Information Literacy Group (ILG) of the Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals.

The research aims to explore the following areas:

  • To explore Syrian new Scots’ ‘ways of knowing’  for addressing critical social inclusion needs (e.g. housing, welfare, education, benefits, employability, rights and entitlements). This may involve interaction with people, tools and processes within their new socio-cultural setting.

  • To examine the barriers (e.g. English language, socio-cultural differences) and enablers (local community support, new technologies and media) they  encounter in the process of addressing their key information needs;

  • To investigate how Syrian new Scots could be further supported to adapt to their local communities, feel a sense of belongingness and successfully establish their identity into the Scottish society.


The project  is conducted by means of interviews with Scottish Refugee Council representatives and focus groups with Syrian new Scots families in Scotland.

Value of Study

The outcomes of this research will help towards making recommendations on how to best aid Syrian newcomers in their social inclusion and community engagement and how to support their habitual and emerging information landscapes for their resettlement and adaptation. 

The research findings will be of interest to local and regional support organizations and community volunteer groups who contribute to the social wellbeing and social integration of Syrian new Scots as well as public libraries as centres for educational and cultural orientation sessions and support for newly settled refugees and for the communities that welcome them. 

The complete proposal can be found here.

The duration of this project is from October 2016 to February 2017.