News from the Nuclear Information Section
International Nuclear Information System (INIS), IAEA Library & SDSG

No. 15, December 2013


Interview with Head of NIS

During the 57th IAEA General Conference held in Vienna from 1620 September 2013, Dobrica Savić, Head of the Nuclear Information Section (NIS) was asked to comment on the current status of nuclear information.

In the interview, Mr Savić offered his view on the requirements of today's nuclear information users, and the improvements made in accessing nuclear information. In addition to a brief historical overview of changes made during the last few years, special emphasis was placed on the latest activities of the International Nuclear Information System (INIS) and future activities in improving user access to nuclear information, especially by providing a single and easy access point to all nuclear information available from the IAEA Department of Nuclear Energy.

What are the requirements of today’s nuclear information users?

Mr Savić: The world of information, and in particular the world of nuclear information, is undergoing some major changes. Until recently, the main concern of information users was the quantity of information that could be found and the actual access to that information.

Today, nuclear information users have different requirements.

Firstly, they want information to be directly relevant to their search and their specific needs.

Secondly, in the ocean of available information, trustworthiness and source become of utmost importance.

And finally, one of today’s concerns is not the quantity of information, but rather the quality of the information.

When searching IAEA’s International Nuclear Information System – one of the world’s largest collections of published information on the peaceful uses of nuclear science and technology, one searches a highly specialized set of over 3.6 million academic and technical publications and documents - so the relevance is very high.

Searching the INIS Collection eliminates the information noise generated by using search engines such as Google. In contrast to searching the web, INIS provides access to trusted and hand-picked quality information which has been processed by national INIS liaison officers for the last forty-some years. And, that is very important to the field of nuclear energy.

What has been done to improve access to nuclear information?

Great efforts were made by the IAEA and by the Department of Nuclear Energy to improve access to its nuclear information resources. I will mention only the results achieved by the International Nuclear Information System, which is the IAEA’s largest information system.

In 2009, the INIS Collection was opened to all Internet users around the world, giving them free, open and unrestricted access to millions of records and hundreds of thousands of full text documents.

In 2010, INIS developed a search widget which was integrated into third-party Web sites.

In 2011, INIS replaced its legacy search engine with Google-based technology. Search speed was dramatically improved, while offering indexing of full text non-conventional documents. The English Thesaurus was integrated, and a multilingual user interface was introduced, together with cross-language searching.

In 2012, a mobile version of the INIS website was introduced, allowing users to access the site from their mobile devices. At the same time, the Thesaurus was extended to cover 8 languages. Also, the IAEA Library catalogue was included in INIS searches.

In 2013, a new feature was introduced which allows the INIS Collection to be browsed by Subject Category. The IAEA Meetings on Atomic Energy database was added to the INIS search.

Recently, an NE News app for iPad was released, offering access to news and information from the Department of Nuclear Energy through an easy to use application.

Our future efforts will continue to be directed towards improving user’s access to information, especially by providing a single and easy access point to all nuclear information available from the Department of Nuclear Energy.

The complete interview can be viewed here.