Bibliography Section member completes doctoral thesis

Sandra Gisela Martin recently completed her doctoral thesis “Conceptual model for universal bibliographic control”.



The present research sought to establish a conceptual model for universal bibliographic control (UBC) based on the study of three epistemic axes: the legal deposit, national bibliographies, and bibliographic and authorship identifiers. The methodological approach responded to the analytical method based on a bibliographic design of documentary research with a qualitative strategy.  The study population consisted of the 20 Latin American countries that are members of the Association of Ibero-American States for the Development of National Libraries of Ibero-America (ABINIA), excluding Spain and Portugal. A comparative content analysis and a hermeneutic reading of the legal deposit legislation were carried out, the coverage, format and degree of visibility of Latin American national bibliographies in progress on the Web were investigated, and the degree of insertion of bibliographic and author identifiers in the bibliographic control process in Latin American national libraries and/or national bibliographic agencies was investigated. Some categories of analysis proposed in the texts were selected and others that emerged from the reading of the documents were proposed, from which comparative tables with descriptive characteristics were elaborated.

Then, a proposal for a conceptual model of universal bibliographic control was presented, based on general systems theory (GST) and considered as a global system with a model structure of decentralized, distributed, collaborative, interconnected and linked.   The CBU was reflected upon based on the four principles of relevant knowledge proposed by Morin (1999): context, global, multidimensional and complex; and nine dimensions of analysis were proposed: theoretical/conceptual framework, political, legislative, librarian, collaborative, normative, technological, relational, services.

The results and conclusions show the need, on the one hand, to rethink the conceptualization and scope of documentary heritage from a theoretical dimension and, on the other, to question the visions and missions of national libraries.  It is also pointed out that the legal deposit does not represent the totality of a country’s documentary heritage, but only a part of it, which is subject to the legislation in force and the possibilities of complying with it. In relation to the CBU, it can be concluded by highlighting the need to move from a pragmatic vision oriented to data and the strict application of bibliographic description regulations, to a theoretical and systemic vision that contemplates the complexity of the bibliographic multiverse.