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Promoting Use of EResources in Bangladesh: A Developing Country Perspective - Nafiz Zaman Shuva
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Promoting Use of EResources in Bangladesh: A Developing Country Perspective - Nafiz Zaman Shuva


Nafiz Zaman Shuva, University of Dhaka, Bangladesh …

Nafiz Zaman Shuva, University of Dhaka, Bangladesh

Presented at the 2010 Electronic Resources & Libraries Conference.

Abstract: This article examines the existing status of use of electronic resources in different types of libraries of Bangladesh. An attempt has been made to identify the constraints that hinder the use of electronic resources in libraries of Bangladesh. Finally it proposes some solutions to promote the use of electronic resources in libraries of Bangladesh.

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  • 1. Electronic Resources & Libraries Conference-2010Presentation on Nafiz Zaman Shuva Department of Information Science & Library Management University of Dhaka & Erasmus Mundus Scholar for International Master in Digital Library Learning
  • 2. • Bangladesh emerged as an independent andsovereign country in 1971 following a nine month warof liberation. It is one of the largest deltas of theworld with a total area of 147,570 sq km. Bangladeshhas a population of about 140 million, making it oneof the densely populated countries of the world. Theliteracy rate of Bangladeshi people is 43.1%. Over98% of the people speak in Bangla.• Bangladesh is among the poorest countries in theworld. The UNDP lists it as number 146 according tothe Human Development Index 2009, a composite ofdevelopment and human development indicators.The per capita income is $554 (BBS, 2008).• More than 35 million people in Bangladesh, arounda quarter of its population, face acute poverty andhunger.
  • 3. Source:Source: Source: oehl).jpgSource: Source: Source :,_Bangladesh.htm
  • 4.  First Mainframe computer came to Bangladesh in 1964. Internet came late in Bangladesh, with UUCP e- mail beginning in 1993 and IP connectivity in 1996. SEA-ME-WE-4 submarine cable connectivity 21 May 2006. According to the Internet World Stats as of September, 2009 there are currently 556,000 internet users in Bangladesh and the internet penetration is 0.4%.
  • 5. 1.36 % Computer 0.20 % Access E-mail Access • 4.88 in Urban Areas • 0.17 % in Rural AreasSource: Bangladesh Bureau of Statistics (BBS), HIES 2005 (provisional)
  • 6. Source:
  • 7. Library MovementStarted in 1854
  • 8. Government -68Non-GovernmentPublic Libraries- 1603
  • 9.  National Library of Bangladesh-1972  National Health andSource: Documentation Center (NHLDC)-1974
  • 10. 31 Public University Libraries 53 Private University Libraries 1600 College Libraries Under National University of Bangladesh 1200 Intermediate College LibrariesSource:
  • 11.  There are around 1000 special libraries in Bangladesh.  The exact number of special libraries functioning is not known since no one has taken this initiative up to now.  Notable special libraries includes: ICDDR-B Library, BIRDEM, SAARC Agricultural Information Center, CIRDAP Library, Community Development Library etc.Source:
  • 12. 1980s considered as the beginning of the automation era as far as libraries and information centers in Bangladesh are concerned. International Centre for Diarrhoeal Disease Research, Bangladesh (ICDDR,B) Library and Agricultural Information Centre (AIC) are pioneers in creating bibliographic databases on specialized fields using microcomputers.
  • 13. Frustration Ahead
  • 14.  Among the 68 government public libraries only14 public libraries have computers for administrative use. Bangladesh Central Public Library has 18 computers and the other 13 libraries have one computer each.
  • 15. Sorry Internet Service is Not Available !!
  • 16. Frustration Continues.....................Source:
  • 17.  Currently, National Library of Bangladesh has only 03 workable computers with internet facility. Automation Section of National Library was set up in 1996 with 6 computers. Users are not fully satisfied with the traditional services provided by National Library of Bangladesh. ICT status in National Health Library and Documentation is better than National Library of Bangladesh.
  • 18.  ICT status of some private university libraries are quite satisfactory. They are offering time befitting services to its users. ICT status in public university libraries in- comparison with some private university libraries are not satisfactory.
  • 19.  The largest university library in Bangladesh- University of Dhaka Central Library has ICT facilities but does not deserve praise for its ICT related services. Frustrated situation exists in all other academic libraries of Bangladesh specially affiliated to National University of Bangladesh.
  • 20.  Special libraries of Bangladesh offer good number of ICT based services to its users. Special libraries based in Dhaka offer time befitting, up-to-date library services to its users.
  • 21.  E-journals  Electronic books  E-Dictionaries  E-Reference books  Reference databasesSource:[1].jpg
  • 22.  Public Libraries Source: Nooooooooooooooooooooo!!
  • 23.  National Library of Bangladesh Source:
  • 24.  National Health and Documentation Centre Source:
  • 25.  University Libraries both Public and Private Source:
  • 26.  College Libraries both Government and Private
  • 27.  Ministerial Library-Government of Bangladesh Source:
  • 28. Bangladesh INASP-PERii Consortium
  • 29.  MoU between Bangladesh Academy of Sciences and INASP-2006 Bangladesh INASP-PERI Consortium (BIPC) established in 2007 Trial basis free of subscription in 2006 Participating libraries during the trial period- 10
  • 30.  i) A Coordination Committee headed by the Director of BAS with Primary Contact Officers from all institutions as members. ii)An Advisory Committee headed by the President of BAS with heads of institutions as members.
  • 31. 40 3835 30302520 No. of Participating 16 Libraries1510 50 2007 2008 2009
  • 32. Members Profile of the Consortium 1 1 Public University Libraries Private University10 14 Libraries Special Libraries Regional University Library International Islamic 12 University Library
  • 33. Year Fees ($) No. of Libraries Participated 2007 80,000 16 2008 120,000 30 2009 170,000 38Source:
  • 34. Source:
  • 35. Number of Articles Downloaded120000 111000100000 9300080000 77000600004000020000 0 2007 2008 2009 (June)
  • 36.  INASP sends a list of resources offered for Bangladesh.  Coordination Committee selects the resources from the list provided by INASP.Source:[1].jpg
  • 37.  Consortium offer technical support to the participating libraries . 3% of the contributions from the institutions are retained at BAS for in-country management / operational costs. Consortium performs promotional activities to encourage more and more use of electronic resources among the users of the participating libraries.
  • 38.  Number of libraries Surveyed-15  3 Public University Libraries  4 Private University Libraries  06 Special Libraries  01 National Library  01 Public LibrarySource:
  • 39. Name of the Year Year of Number of Number of Total Number Staff with Library & of Establishment Inception of Computers Computers for of Staff Electronic Information ICT Available in the Users with Resource Centre Library Internet Management Connection Skills Bangladesh 1958 - 18 411 40Central Public LibraryBangladesh Bank 1962 2003 12 12 19 10 Library Bangladesh 1972 2000 40 19 29 10 National Parliament Legislative Information Centre BUET 1962 1998 61 44 43 Almost all BIRDEM 1975 2003 09 05 12 06 BSMMU 1965 2000 17 15 28 03 East West 1996 2000 16 06 22 12 University ICDDR-B 1962 1987 23 12 08 08 Independent 1993 35 35 22 05 UniversityMinistry of Law, 1963 2008 (Partial) 01 - 04 02 Justice andParliamentaryAffairs Library
  • 40. Name of the Year Year of Number of Number of Total Number Staff with Library & of Inception of Computers Computers for of Staff ElectronicInformation Establishment ICT Available in Users with Resource centre the Library Internet Management Connection Skills National 1972 1997 03 03* 63 07 Library of Bangladesh North South 1992 2000 55 35 21 11 University Library SAARC 1985 - 03 01 03 02 Agricultural Information Centre South East 2002 2006 03 02 * 07 01 University Library University of 1921 1998 60 57 237 30Dhaka, Central Library
  • 41. 5 E-book10 Printed Book
  • 42. 08 libraries have website07 libraries have training program on use of electronic resources
  • 43. Need to Establish National E- Resource Task ForceSource:
  • 44. Secretary, Cultural Ministry , Chairman of the Task ForceJoint Secretary, Ministry of Science and Information & Communication Technology, MemberChairman , University Grant Commission, MemberRepresentative from Dept. of Information Science & Library Management, University ofDhaka, MemberDirector, Bangladesh Central Public Library, MemberDirector, Directorate of Archive and Libraries, MemberRepresentative from Bangladesh Academy of Sciences, MemberRepresentative from Bangladesh Computer Council, Member
  • 45.  1st Phase All Ministry library based in Dhaka Legislative Information Centre, Bangladesh National Parliament Bangladesh Central Public Library National Library of Bangladesh and National Health Library and Documentation Center
  • 46.  2nd Phase Remaining Government Libraries Including Judicial Libraries Based in Dhaka City Public libraries in district town of Bangladesh Government offices in district town of Bangladesh  3rd Phase  All remaining government libraries including the libraries in rural areas
  • 47. Chairman, University Grant Commission Vice - Vice - RepresentativeChancellors Librarians Chancellors From From All From All From All Bangladesh Respective Public Private Academy of UniversitiesUniversities Universities Sciences
  • 48.  Major Problems  Lack of sufficient funds  Absence of comprehensive national and local ICT policies  Lack of ICT knowledge and skills  Resistance to change  Bureaucratic procedures  Low priority given to librariesSource:
  • 49. Unskilled and shy librariansLack of proper planningLack of cooperation among the libraries and lack of cooperative spirit among the librariansLack of international cooperationLack of government supportLack of strong, effective library associations in Bangladesh
  • 50.  Improvement of ICT infrastructure .  National E-resource Task Force should be created immediately.  Creation of E-resource Consortium is a must.Source:
  • 51. The Government of Bangladesh should allocate sufficient funds in the budget for the development of library sector in Bangladesh. Practical electronic resource management course should be integrated in the LIS curriculum at the university level.Source:
  • 52.  Library and information science teaching and training institutions should introduce different types of training programs for unskilled library professionals. The library associations of Bangladesh should organize seminars, workshops, etc. to create awareness among librarians about current developments in technology. Database service providers should offer some packages for the developing country libraries. Service fees should increase gradually. International cooperation is a must in the library field.
  • 53. Source: &
  • 54. Photo Credit:
  • 55. Want to conduct research on Bangladesh? I am here to help you!!