Libraries at University of Nebraska-Lincoln


Document Type



Ledwaba, Lesiba Steve. 2019. The management of the internet connectivity in the South African public libraries


Free public internet access remains an anchor and a critical component of the role public libraries play especially in South Africa. This paper reports on a study that was undertaken to determine how internet access in South African public libraries is managed. The paper was guided by research questions on; the awareness of regulatory policies governing internet access in public libraries; the budget allocation to public libraries to fulfil their mandate; the level of ICT support in public libraries and the accessibility of internet in public libraries. The paper employed a survey design in which an interview was used to collect data from nine respondents. No sampling was done on the population (nine directors of provincial public libraries), as the nature of this population did not warrant further dissection due to its size. It emerged that internet access in public libraries was provided by various internet service providers (ISPs) and that the bandwidth capacity provided to these libraries differs from province to province. The paper recommended among others, that telecommunication infrastructure be made available to historically disadvantaged rural public libraries as well to enable them to access the internet, and that government should intervene to bring down the cost of bandwidth in the country to ensure sustainability of internet access