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Knowledge without boundaries. Usage Perception study findings IFLA, Helsinki, 2012.

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Presentation on theme: "Knowledge without boundaries. Usage Perception study findings IFLA, Helsinki, 2012."— Presentation transcript:

1 Knowledge without boundaries

2 Usage Perception study findings IFLA, Helsinki, 2012

3 Research context EIFL Public Library Innovation Programme to support innovative use of technologies in public libraries Gap of knowledge about perceptions of public libraries in African countries EIFL – PLIP grantees

4 Study on the Perceptions of Public Libraries General state of public libraries Current awareness, perceptions and attitudes Role of librarians in local community development Perceptions of public libraries in Africa

5 Scope and targets 6 countries: Ghana, Kenya, Tanzania, Zimbabwe, Ethiopia and Uganda 5 target groups: 2000 library users 1201 library non-users 283 librarians 278 local officials 112 national officials Source: Flickr, Labuto Library Project

6 Key findings

7 Libraries are important to individuals and communities Opinion of users Opinion of local government officials

8 Primary use of public libraries is educational Purpose of libraries by (users) Total Kenya Uganda Tanzania Ghana Base (=total sample) %%% Educational purposes (for homework or to take a class) National news or information Local news or information Entertainment Information on health issue International news or information To conduct a job search or write a CV Loan books To look for information on starting or running a business

9 But the benefits derived go beyond education Total Kenya Uganda Tanzania Ghana Base (=total sample) %%% Developed new skills or learned something new Obtained new ideas, new interests Got helpful information for school/ learning Experienced the library as safe and quiet place for study and reading Save time Enjoyed the visits- have you felt comfortable in the library Got helpful information for health and well being Made contacts with other people Got helpful information for business and commerce Got helpful information about your community Be better in your job

10 National officials strongly agree with the library helping to bridge the digital divide

11 Local government officials perceptions regarding the potential of libraries

12 Overall findings Awareness of libraries is high General perception about libraries is positive There is a need for technology Librarians are competent but have limitations in ICT Both local and national government readily accept the notion that libraries could contribute in the areas of economic development, employment, health, agriculture and the digital divide

13 Dissemination/ Use of findings

14 Dissemination Publicity, communication Articles and presentations (IFLA, Ariadne, African Library Summit, IGF) Internet Governance Forum in Nairobi, Kenya Workshop title: Do policymakers understand the role of libraries in mobilizing the internet as a catalyst for development, innovation and freedom? EIFL web site:

15 Dissemination Publicity, Advocacy Presentations of findings to media and stakeholders in Ghana, Kenya, Uganda; Africa awareness raising groups – Advocacy plans; small grants to support innovation and AARG work

16 Dissemination Publicity, Advocacy Presentations of findings to media and stakeholders in Ghana, Kenya, Uganda; Africa awareness raising groups – Advocacy plans; small grants to support innovation and AARG work Libraries Foster Development Africa: Failure to Adopt Technology in Libraries Results in Fewer Users Kenya: New Research Shows Libraries in Africa Are "Essential," Yet Underutilized

17 Dissemination Publicity, Advocacy Presentations of findings to media and stakeholders in Ghana, Kenya, Uganda; Africa awareness raising groups – Advocacy plans; small grants to support innovation and AARG work Africa Awareness Raising groups

18 Uganda ARG Objective: To Advocate for and get more funding for library services Most participants in the survey including policy level officials (85%) say that libraries are underfunded Objective: Re-enforce Perception of instant association of libraries with information/knowledge storage Users (71%) and non-usrs (69%) of libraries see libraries as places where information can be obtained

19 Dissemination Publicity, Advocacy Presentations of findings to media and stakeholders in Ghana, Kenya, Uganda; Africa awareness raising groups – Advocacy plans; small grants to support innovation and AARG work Innovative services in libraries

20 Thank you!


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