Background: Academic, medical and research libraries frequently implement Web 2.0 services for users. Several reports notwithstanding, characteristics and effectiveness of services are unclear.
Objectives: To find out: the Web 2.0 services implemented by medical, academic and research libraries; study designs, measures and types of data used in included articles to evaluate effectiveness; whether the identified body of literature is amenable to a systematic review of results.
Methods: Scoping review mapping the literature on the topic. Searches were performed in 19 databases. Inclusion criteria: research articles in English, Italian, German, French and Spanish (publication date ≥2006) about Web 2.0 services for final users implemented by academic, medical and research libraries. Reviewers’ agreement was measured by Cohen’s kappa. From a data set of 6461 articles, 255 (4%) were coded and analysed.
Results: Conferencing/chat/instant messaging, blogging, podcasts, social networking, wikis and aggregators were frequently examined. Services were mainly targeted at general academic users of English-speaking countries.
Conclusions: Data prohibit a reliable estimate of the relative frequency of implemented Web 2.0 services. Case studies were the prevalent design. Most articles evaluated different outcomes using diverse assessment methodologies. A systematic review is recommended to assess the effectiveness of such services.