Details on article
|Bangani S.; Dube L.
|Institutional commitment to community engagement in South African academic libraries
Bangani S.; Dube L. Institutional commitment to community engagement in South African academic libraries,Journal of Academic Librarianship 49 2
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|The paper sought to examine institutional commitment to community engagement (CE) in South African public university libraries. The research approach adopted was qualitative using three methods, interviews with Library Heads (LHs), focus groups discussions with Librarians and content analysis of the libraries' strategic plans. Data were collected, analysed and interpreted thematically using ATLAS.ti and according to the objectives of the study. Findings revealed that most libraries in South Africa reflect CE in their strategic objectives. However, having CE in the strategies objectives does not often translate to its funding and assessment by the universities. This points to a dissonance between policy and implementation. The study recommends that South African academic libraries should strive to utilise more quantitative and qualitative methods to assess their CE initiatives. Similar to other main functions of universities, such as teaching, learning and research; government should consider introducing a competitive funding model for the CE mandate to stimulate practical, academic and research interest in this niche. © 2023 The Author(s)