What would Google do?
Whilst reading Paul Miller's new(ish) blog this morning I browsed my way over to his profile page on Business Week and thence to an article entitled Detroit Should Get Cracking on its Googlemobile by Jeff Jarvis which contains a short video (8 minutes or so) interview with the author. I haven't read the article or the book(!) but I quite liked the video despite the fact that it is not much more than an excuse to plug Jarvis' book, What would Google do?
It's a good question, and one that I tend to ask regularly in the context of things like institutional repositories. Come to think of it, it's probably not a bad question to ask about universities more generally (as I think Jarvis does in the book). I don't know if I would agree with Jarvis' answers but I think it is an interesting place to start a discussion.
In the video Jarvis characterises the Google approach as having four aspects:
- Give up control to the people/your users.
- Think like a platform and/or a network - let people build on top of what you do.
- Scale has changed - "small is the new big".
- Make mistakes well.
How would these characteristics apply when thinking about the way that universities operate?