Internet and Web based library services provision among academic libraries in Zambia: a comparative study of the University Zambia and Copperbelt University libraries
This study sought to assess the extent to which the two big public university libraries in Zambia have implemented web library services by comparing and contrasting their web services. The paper further explored the challenges the two university libraries face in their quest to provide web based services to their users. The research was a qualitative comparative study in which a detailed study of web services provided by the two libraries was conducted. Data was collected through documents analysis. In addition, oral interviews were conducted with systems librarians from these libraries. The findings show that the concept of web library services provision in these two public university libraries is a far- fetched dream because many library services are not on the web. For instance, both the University of Zambia and Copperbelt University libraries do not provide on-line reference, self-circulation, and web inter-library loan services. However, both libraries provide web access to their institutional repositories. This research has also revealed that the Copperbelt university library has done far much better than the University of Zambia library as it provides WEBOPAC and on-line reservation to it’s users. Among the bottlenecks to web library services provision in Zambia identified include limited Internet bandwidth among these university libraries.