n Mousaion - Using information and communications technologies in the University of KwaZulu-Natal and University of Ibadan libraries

Volume 33, Issue 4
  • ISSN : 0027-2639



The use of information and communications technologies (ICTs) for knowledge management (KM) has become a critical success factor in present-day university libraries. University libraries have continued to use ICTs to foster and enhance the operations of information services on a daily basis in the library environment. The use of ICTs requires librarians to have proven knowledge and skills in order to achieve effective and efficient work performance in the libraries. This article focuses on the two research questions, namely: 'What are the skills needed for ICTs by librarians at the university libraries?' and 'What are the challenges faced by librarians in the use of ICTs for KM at the university libraries?' The research specifically targeted the libraries at the University of KwaZulu-Natal (UKZN), South Africa, and the University of Ibadan (UI), Nigeria. Quantitative and qualitative research approaches were adopted in order to conduct data collection and data analysis. The research findings were that, when compared, the two university libraries showed a correlation in the skills required by librarians. This is accompanied by knowledge of ICT hardware and software; various subject areas in librarianship; structure and process of cataloguing, and classification, to function better in the library environment. Several challenges, including the high cost of hardware and software; lack of implementation of ICT policies; and inadequate in-depth knowledge of the library holdings were observed. In conclusion, the dynamic information environment requires librarians to be proactive and have enhanced education that would enable them to address change management, leadership roles, and technical information skills. Librarians need to constantly update their knowledge and skill-sets to keep up with current trends of technology in library and information services.

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