We cannot refuse the importance of library laws. Library laws become very helpful for the establishment, betterment and contribution of the libraries. Many countries of the world make their own laws and regulation for their libraries. Neighbor country India’s different states like, Madras, Andhra pardais, Mosor, Maharashtra and Eastern Bengal implemented library rules for their public libraries. Frank M. Gardner studied 14 countries’ library laws, he found library laws very necessary for the success and safety of libraries. America, Norway, Denmark and many other school’s libraries have their laws.
In Pakistan “Shams-ul-mah Dawood Pota Sindh Government library, Hyderabad” have importance that this institution established according to the act of ‘The Sindh Cultural Advancement Act, 1955’ but according to Dr. Anees Khursheed this law is never excepted for the successful of libraries as compared to the libraries established without any act. After the establishment of Pakistan, there was a need to save the rare documents in a systematic way, so the professional related to this field making strategies to save these pieces of knowledge. Society for the Promotion and Improvement of Libraries, SPIL (1961) gave the first library law in a seminar (Karachi). In which they highlight the importance and welfare of libraries and their role for the education. Hakim Muhamad Seed gave this law to the government for the purpose of acceptance.
Since 1957, PLA plays an important role for the establishment of libraries, first conference of PLA was presided by President, General Sikander Mirza which was held in Karachi (9-12, January, 1957). He gave the address on the importance on libraries. After this, many acts and policies were added and changed according to the need of time.
Some applied acts:
Public libraries act, 1989
Model Public Libraries Act for Provinces
Library Act for Sindh
Public Library Network in Pakistan
National Library Act
In 1998, different heads of libraries gave new laws and instruction for modern library system. They modified old laws and make new implementation according to the modern time. National library of Pakistan doing good job for the development of libraries and copyright works. It serves as depository of some international organizations like Asian development bank, international labor organization, and US department of Publications etc. The library is National ISBN Agency for Pakistani Publications. All the libraries (academic, special, public, national) work according to the laws and regulations.
Impact of Libraries on Economic DevelopmentImpact of Libraries on Economic Development
Economic development is a constant commitment to advancing human existence with quality of life including socio-cultural, political, economic, and general welfare of the people.Libraries play a vital role to the mentally growth of societies, as they gain knowledge for their career, educational, household and economically purpose. Access to information is one of the primary factors in economic development goals. Increased access to information and knowledge, underpinned by universal literacy, is an essential pillar of economic development “Ensure public access to information and protect fundamental freedoms, in accordance with national legislation and international agreement” (IFLA (2015). Increasing the access of information and knowledge across society,the availability ofinformation and communications technologies (ICTs), supports economic development and improves people’s lives.
“The Lyon Declaration on Access to Information and Development shows that libraries, information intermediaries, and development organizations are united behind the inclusion of access to information in the development framework”
With the underlying economic realities in our countrytheeconomy growth is at the stage of developing as inclusively, sustainably, and conductively; libraries intentionally focus on collecting, storing, and disseminating information across different sectors of the economy and bringing about a significant reduction in poverty and increased improvement of the economy.With the impact of libraries on the different institutional’ economy sections, it is shocking that the involvement of libraries in economically development policies has not been sufficiently defined. “Effective inclusion of Library and information services for sustainable development policies are continuously lacking” (Mngutyo et al., 2020).
The library extends its roles to see that all sectorshave global access to information resources and services tailored to the need of every sector especially economic needs. The growing presence of special libraries within private and public establishments makes it possible for the library to reach the specialized information needs of the organizations.Libraries of all kinds are all together helping to circulate needed information services to the respective sectors of the economy leading to the growth and development of the country. Valantin (2014) notes that the ability of the government to develop effective policies and plans depends on its capacity to interpret information relevant to the country’s economic, social, cultural, and financial situation.
Libraries, however, require sound policies to provide the necessary framework for the development of information and communication systems and services to meet the needs of all sectors’ economically requirements. Human knowledge is habitually enriched by information; hence, the collective intellectual abilities of a nation that is; human capital, which will also depend on access to information through a well-equipped library.
Use of information and communication technology in academic libraries
Information Communication Technology (ICT) is a main compoundof the advancement and development of information in a technological way. Information, as power is effective an efficient resource and a vital tool needed for the development of all sectors in any country. It is an authoritativesystem in libraries to satisfying the information need of the users. The emergence of ICT has impacted greatly on the quality of information provided through academiclibraries. In this 21st century, the extreme role of ICT in library operations cannot be over emphasized. Many academiclibraries routines and operations that were performed manually are now converted into computerized system. Applications of ICT techniques providing better and faster services to the end users. According to Janakiraman and Subramaniah (2015):
“The world now experiences a digital scenario in which ICT has changed the possibilities of the library job promotions and has brought changes to expected library performances”
ICT is a generic term that refers to the technologies that are used to collect, store, edit and communicate information in various format (Raji, 2018). The use of ICT improves access to digital information. Adoption of ICT in libraries is a way of improving on information services provided in libraries. This is an era, when people need to access timely information with ease and fast, and this can only be done through the application of ICT to library services. It is also a way of contributing development of information of the country, since timely and effective provision of useful information can assist in building up a society ICT as an enabling tool, assist libraries in provision of information, which is very paramount to development of the various sectors in the nation. Libraries are playing a very important role facilitating access to global information and knowledge resources, using ICT.
Many institutions and organizations including libraries face technological challenges in the process of implementation ICTs to their services. Information provision is important to development and growth of any country’s success.ICT is a term used in the library to refer to application of computers and other technologies to library practices such as acquisition, storage, organization and dissemination of information. The world has become a global village and with ICT, many library users now have access to vast sea of information, without necessarily investing much time or energy. The process of generally and distributing information is now being facilitated through the use of ICT.
Benefits of ICT in Libraries
Globalization driven by ICT is presently having phenomenal impact on library practices ICTSs are significant and useful tools for sustainable development in all fields and all aspects of our society. ICTs provide means to actualizing developmental goals in education, health, agriculture, business and commerce among others.Internet provides up-to-date information on any subject. For the professional duties, computers are used to automate different manual functions. Acquisition, cataloguing of library materials, circulation, cataloguing of library materials, circulation and serials management are now automated in libraries, using available software in the market. ICTs enable libraries to locate store, retrieve and disseminate information. ICT tools such as CD-ROM and e-mail services are used in libraries for dissemination of information. In addition, digitization of information resources which involves converting print resources to electronic form is also carried out, using ICT.
Other benefits of ICT in libraries as stated by Ashikuzzaman (2014) include:
Provision of speedy and easy access to information.
Provision of remote and round the clock access to users.
Provision of access to unlimited information from different sources.
ICT enable easier, faster, cheaper and more effective library operations.
ICT helps to manage information overload as information retrieval is made easier in computerized systems.
Computerization helps the library to save space and reduce paper.
There is no doubt that integration of ICT into provision of library services is able to bring great benefits to the entire community and nation. ICT which remains an enabling tool for provision of timely and current library and information services is also indispensable to the sustainable development (Nwabueze and Ozioko, 2011) ICT can be applied to every aspect of human attempt to achieve excellent outcomes.
The role of research libraries is as significant as the role of library in other academic areas. The role of research library is pivotal on state level, libraries have in-depth resources in the form of books, journals, magazines, articles, and bibliographies. Libraries offer space for users to learn and provide excellent environment for research. Libraries have healthy staff that can help students in locating the information that a researcher might need and pay brilliant impact on state level.Most research libraries today have systematic digitized information, they provide digital access to e-books, e-journals and different website’s links etc. These libraries try to maintain their importance in current digital age. The age of research’ it was mentioned that electronic and digital services are the most important service that a library can provide to its users. The digital research library is a new trend and has added convenience for the users to search any information.
Good research libraries help institutions to produce and hold top researchers at the state level. We know there is a global competition for top researchers, and institutional reputation is key to attracting them. Many factors contribute to a good reputation, library contributes as a research body and its positively impact on state. The quality, nature, and extent of the library’s collections, effective staff and the services they provide, building design are all important. Successful and high-quality research libraries can be a significant factor in producing and holding top researchers.
Research libraries help research students to win research grants and contracts with international universities for further education. Success in winning research grants and contracts is critically-important, especially for research-intensive universities. Research Support Offices help researchers to generate a regular flow of high-quality applications for such grants and contracts, libraries are playing an increasingly significant role too. On the whole they do so in response to specific requests rather than proactively, however, researchers are not required to consult the library in generating their bids. Libraries could play a greater role if researchers knew that support was available, and if their involvement was more formalized. Libraries have an opportunity to use their skills to help researchers improve the quality of their funding applications, and to increase the institution’s success in winning research income. These services make a good image of research as state level.
Research libraries promote and exploit new research technologies and new models of scholarly communications. Research libraries are critically important in helping researchers to exploit the full benefits and opportunities of the networked world, including such developments as open access and social media. Many libraries have succeeded in addressing technological problems, by establishing stronger links with researchers and re focusing their services to promote and exploit new technologies and new models of scholarly communication. Research libraries provide easy access to high-quality content related to research, and its value is recognized by researchers.
Libraries spend huge amounts to manage and develop their collections provide access to researchers. But we saw researchers always want more. This need pressure on institutional budgets, good research libraries are still seeking to increase the content budget. Research libraries meet researchers’ needs more effectively as well as helping their dialogue with the senior managers from whom they seek funding. Libraries are one of the most enduring features of the academy, central to the values and the practice of scholarship, value of research library is alsovery crucial cornerstone and it represent the institutional research at state level in very positive and effective ways.
Marketing of information management centers’ services is vital to keeping their users and potential users informed and educated about the resources and services that match their needs and interests. Effective marketing skills are needed to increase awareness of the information center’s value and to expand its user base.Marketing in information centers is the link between its user’s needs and its resources and services; as aninformation marketer, he/she must create that link. His/her skills will help to connect the centerwith its users, so they will know how to get information many other ways without even coming to the information center building or interacting with information provider. With constant competition from other information providers centers, information providerneeds to communicate with their users that they can meet their needs better than other providers. With the development of technology, we just need to change that stereotype. Marketing of information centers reminds users that their center is still a great choice for meeting their information needs in today’s world.
Need of Marketing in Information Centers
Libraries and now information centers are facing a time of unexpected change and challenge. Recent technological developments are creating new forms of information, new sources of information and new ways of providing information bypassing traditional institutional like libraries. There has been an increasing pressure on libraries to mobilize resources and become self-reliant. Library users are transforming into customers with rising expectations, diverse needs and wants, and choices. Now, the real challenge for library and information professionals is not to manage the collection, staff and technology but to turn these resources into services. The concept of services has also changed, from basic to value added, from staff assisted to self -service, from in-house to outreach, from free to priced, from reactive to pro-active, and from masscustomization to individualized service.
In this environment information providers are finding new ways of serving users or customers effectively and efficiently. The information centers have gradually accepted both as relevant and beneficial ways. Marketing provides an opportunity to see as to how they can offer effective and efficient services to their users or customers.
Due to blast of information at global level, the more information available in the market, it is necessary to theinformation centersto meet the needs of users. In information management framework, the users are information needed, patrons, employees, etc. As such, satisfaction of the customer is of primary concern in the marketing process and the entire ethos and shared values of the organization owe the responsibility of satisfying the customer.
The developments taken place world over influenced the Pakistani librarianship as well. There has been a number of developments in marketing of library and information management services in the country. Many of our schools are fully aware of this area and included the course of “LIS marketing in their curricula.
Dr. Haroon Idrees &Ataur Rehman (2009) introduced a third-party theory in LIS marketing. “Now it is not only a two-way communication and dissemination system from information provider to information users rather it also involved funding agency, doners (third-party)”.
Information providers Information Users
Information centers are the best candidates for marketing among non-profit service organizations. The important thing is to understand the needs of users and communicate in the way they can understand and satisfied. The public image of the information centers comes through experiences or loyalty with their users. of truth when users. All promotion, advertisement, promises, will be wasteful if information centers are unable to transform these experiences into pleasant ones and that too from user’s point of view. Marketing helps the staff’s expertise, further an organization’s mission, promote services by quickly and efficiently finding the right information at the right time, and add value to an organization’s products and services. Without any promotional effort, some key individuals may not be supporters or even users of the Information Centre. Therefore, information centers will look impressive and will emerge as activists’ services providers to the users. Every service activity must be performed with a conscious mind to meet users’ needs exceptionally.
(A paradigm shift from clay tablets to e-tablets in libraries)
Back to the history, before the advent of online search engines, people usually found their questions to the most reliable source they knew was their local library.
The library concept dates back millennia. The first systematically organized library in the ancient Middle East was established in the 7th century BCE by Assyrian ruler Ashurbanipal in Nineveh, in contemporary Iraq(Vaughan Don, 2021).It contained approximately 30,000 cuneiform tablets arranged by topic. Many of the works were archival documents and scholarly texts, but there were also works of literature, including the ancient Epic of Gilgamesh. Like many bibliophiles, Ashurbanipal was very protective of his library. An inscription in one of the texts warns that potential thieves would face the wrath of the gods.
Great civilization that followed built libraries, they were repositories of knowledge. Some libraries were so large and comprehensive that their legend lives on today. The Alexandria library in Egypt, for example, is believed to have700,000 documents from Greece, Persia, Egypt, India, and other regions. It was so large that it had a branch facility at the nearby temple of Serapis. The world-famous Bayt al-Ḥikmah (House of Wisdom) in Baghdad, established in 830 CE, was another “super library” famous for a huge collection, and the 10th-century library of Caliph al-Ḥakam in Cordova, Spain, boasted more than 400,000 books. Rome and Athens also boasted expansive libraries, as did cultures in other parts of the world, such as China and the Mayan and Aztec civilizations of Central America.
Previous literature shows ‘The goal of ancient libraries was simple: to collect knowledge, learn from it, and use it to make life better’.Ancient libraries used many things to save their knowledge mostly mentioned resources were ‘skin of calf, goat, stones, leaves and most usable thing was “clay tablets’.
Clay Tablets Mesopotamia 2400 BC
We know everything changes with time, and it’s alsoincluding the function of libraries. Before the invention of technology library invited users. But, as the influence of the Internet grew in the 1990s and 2000s, many communities would no longer be a need for libraries to visit physically,everything you could possibly want to know or learn would be just in users’ e-tablets.
Digital libraries are the digital face of traditional libraries that include both digital collections and traditional, fixed media collections. So, they encompass both electronic and paper materials. Digital libraries will also include digital materials that exist outside the physical and administrative bounds of any one digital library. Digital library work, will have to be revised and enhanced to accommodate the differences between new digital media and traditional fixed media. These libraries ideally provide a coherent view of all of the information contained within a library, no matter its form or format. Based on the users’ demand libraries provides the services in electronic formats (e-tablets).
Now the libraries around the world have been working on thischallenge (paradigm shift) for several years. They have created many digital library initiatives and projects, and have formed various national schemes for jointly exploring key issues. Librarians have discovered that, with a few exceptions, making a business case for digitization and investments in digital technology is more difficult than first envisioned, especially given the technical and legal constraints that must first be overcome. As with most other technical developments in libraries over the years, libraries will have to move forward in small, manageable, evolutionary steps, rather than in rapid revolutionary manner.
‘Library Professional is not a teacher of books; he/she is a teacher of knowledge’
Libraries are considered as Brain of every academic institution. Libraries play a vital role to achievethe goals of every degree awarding institution. Library is not a building loaded with books, it is a repository and source of information and ideas, a place for learning and examination, and for the generation of thought and the creation of new knowledge. Academic libraries have the potential to bridge the gap between the ‘information poor’ and the ‘information rich’ by ensuring the users from all educational sectors and provide the easy access of knowledge that they need. Importance of libraries cannot be neglected in the field of law. The law has always been information based and research demanding field it requires the brain-storming of the future lawyers. Law libraries are reflected as specialized libraries or legal research centers, which deal with special and differentlaws of information research sources, contain specifiedlegal materials and serve classifiedusers with narrow range of interests and with broader needs of interests.
As Danner, Estes, & Meadows, (2009) highlights the importance of law library,
“The primary mission of the law educational library is to meet the information needs of the faculty and students of the institution to support it and educating future lawyers, law libraries are the major producers of scholarly literature in law, provide the resources and support needed for research and publication.”
The field of library and information science play an essential role in legal education system. The ultimate goal of this field is to satisfy their users, depending on the legal education satisfied library professionalscheck, select, gain up to date knowledge in the field. Then distribute itthrough law library or law e-library, mostly current information available in book, brochures, circular, magazines, journals and newspaper etc.
The law library professionals play anexclusive and central role to providing the right information to the right users at the right time for the legal process and for the social justice.Even though the basic education and the essential experiences of law library professionals are similar to the other types of library professionals, but there are sufficient differences in their missions and responsibilitieswhich makes them unique and special.The collections of law libraries are relevant to the specific research needs and thrusts of the institution. Depending on their areas of interest, library professionals acquire materials at the national and international research fronts of their disciplines. They modeling the quality of the legal education system at all levels by the virtue of their unique library products and services.
Library professionals are the goldenpart in legal education process from the very beginning; they were highly participated in legal education,saved the timeand provide the bestlibrary services(online reference service, selective dissemination of information current awareness service)and legal sources to their users.The ideal law library professional is completely knowledgeable about every term of the legal studies. He/she is the personofall the necessary character traits, attitudes, and skills which makes him effective legal information professional.Law Judges, researchers, practitioners, and professors and the students have no much time to find out the relevant piece of information from the library, which are spread over vast variety of sources and only choice is to relay upon the library professional and his professional skills enhanced the capability of law library user to arrive at proper book place in the library. (Right book at the right place).
“Providing legal education is the motto of every law library professional”. Law library professionals have unique combination of professional skills, because documents related to legal matters always require special skills to manage; especially moot court practices, court judgments, legislative enactments, constitutional laws, contract acts, company’sordinances, administrative rules and regulations. They perform their role by bridging the gap between the growing needs of the law users in an information society and developing the abilities of the users to access, evaluate and use of legal information they need. Of course, the role of library professionals in legal education is quite different and significant from other librarians.
We live in a knowledge driven society, where the information needsand demandof every library patron is becoming increasingly complex and difficult, especially law library users find something which is very unique and different becausethey are responsible to providing justice in our society.So, library is the place where “The books are for use” (said by S.R.Ranganathan in his 5 laws of Library and Information Science), where user found every answer of difficult question, library professionals provide them vital legal informationfrom the law library materials. Law library patronsalso use the other library services like book loan service, re-issued services, reserved material service,internet service, online law-site and legal databases service and library-licensed electronic resources as well.
Modern library professionals have a lot of responsibilities for the selection, acquisition,storage, managing and distributing the accurate and precise information source (printed or electronic) of legal relevance in suitable and immediately ways, which is suited to the nature of the legal research of their users/patrons.Library professionals feel pleasure when their library patrons frequently use library services and empty the book shelves.
As the father of Library and Information Sciences S.R. Ranganathan said,
Library professional’s first priority is to enhance the preservation and access of the legal education that is at the core of the legal profession and a core function of every law library. Library professionals support legal researchers to reach at early conclusion stage in his/her research work. They survey, understand, and are sensitive to the search behaviors and requirements of legal researchers in order to help them avoid wasted research time and effort. In doing this, they can play a vital role in the management of Justice. That’s why library professionals are called the ‘teacher of teachers.
Before the advent of ICT, libraries housed printed materials. The 21st century libraries have witnessed a tremendous turnaround in information generation and retrieval. Now the library professionals no longer hold only printed materials but also hold the combination of both printed and electronic materials. The world has truly become a global village as a result of the internet availability our society also moved into digital world, where the numerous legal databases, law sites, e-libraries (e-library Sargodha) and digital libraries(HEC digital library) are created and made available in online form for the subscribed libraries. Digitization makes library professionalsmore critical and fundamental when there is information overload in print form and uploaded into the Internet as well. Library professionals always amend their roles and adapt new technology changes (from Stone Age to digital age).They have accepted the paradigm shift from clay tablets to e. tablets.
Digital revolution has touched every aspect of law librarianship. Library professionals moved from the card catalogues to online public access catalogue (OPAC). Many of the law materials now available in machine readable form (MARC). Digital technology has affected the way we select, order, and process legal materials.The need of a library professional is a must not only for getting books from the library but to acquire the actual information from vast selection of information sources. Advocates in any academic and research institute as well as corporate professionals need to spend their time in getting relevant information. A library professional here needs to work with them as a co-worker and help them in getting relevant information when required.
Library professionals conduct different training and resource guide sessions, workshops, seminars, conferences (both national and international levels),orientation lecturesand book awareness programs/walk for the students to use and how to use the library sources which are readily available in the law library. They organized many book fairs/book exhibitions to create awareness about the importance of books in the user’s mind. In this way library professionals expresses the reputation of libraries and promote the newly product (books, journals, and magazine) and service of their libraries.
Law being an information rich subject day-by-day, it grows rapidly, it is very difficult for lawyers to practice without using effective, efficient and up-to-date law resources.
Lawyers/students swim in the law libraries and upswing with legal solutions with the cooperation of library professionals. Their specialized knowledge, experiences, skills and library services positively affect in the assets, lives, and liberty of their ultimate end users. In the near future libraries will have to cooperate much more successfully than in the past if library professionals hope to meet more research needs of their patrons, preserve print law books, and ensure that their digital collections are not lost.
In other words, law libraries have functioned as magical stick for all troubled and tussled.
(The most technologically efficient machine that man has ever invented is the book)Promoting Library Services by the Library Professionals among the Users in this Digital Era
Technology has become the key focus in our lives today. Indeed, so many aspects of our behavior are governed by the need to stay connected to the world through technology. Now, the college and university going students no longer want to visit the library for a few hours of quiet reading. Instead, they want a quick and technology-based solution to everything.
In this digital era, information seeking behavior is constantly changing and the younger generationwant current and latest information, means more interesting. This statement applies equally to the use of the library. Today, librarians facing challenges in making the young users aware about the latest library resources and services in the different ways. Different means through which this threat can be made as an opportunity. The opportunity is to use the library in a differently way will directly and indirectly promote the reading habits among the young generation.
We are living in the age of ICE (Information Communication Entertainment) where users want a fast, technology-based solutions to everything including in the use of the library. E-learners and traditional learners now have access to a universe of digital information through the information superhighway. This has thrown challenges to the librarians to re-evaluate the way they develop, manage, deliver and promote resources and services in digital form.
‘It is hard to imagine the evolution of books and libraries without technology’because library users no longer want to visit the library physically rather, they want to get things in their fingertips by clicking on the devices (similar to virtual library). Many times, they are reading while traveling from one place to others. There is a huge change in the information seeking behavior and the way information is accessed by them. To face the technological challenges, librarians play an important role. If students are not coming to the library, then the library should travel (Mobile Library) to them with the help of the technology which will indirectly help in promoting the reading habit among the youth. Librarians no longer can confine themselves to the physical library rather they need to invent new ideas which can address this issue which can help in promoting the library usage. As the English writer and poet Sidney Sheldon (1917-2007) said,
“Libraries store the energy that fuels the imagination. They open up windows to the world and inspire us to explore and achieve, and contribute to improving our quality of life”.
Digital libraries are changing the concept of the librarian, their collection and services. Various new terms as digital libraries, digital librarian, libraries without walls, virtual libraries, hybrid libraries, electronic libraries, green libraries and online librarieshave emerged to describe the libraries of digital era. The aim of the library and information science profession has always been to provide the users the access to the required services at the right time.
“Dr. S. R. Ranganathan- The father of library and information science in India stated that, Librarianship is a noble profession. A librarian derives his joy by seeing the dawn of joy in the face of readers, helped by him to find the right book at the right time.”
LIS professional need vision for the modern professional skills and technological competencies in order to have bright future in the 21st century. So, the essential future vision of the academic library professional is to achieve the necessary information transformation and to face the digital informational needs of the users. Now, the role of the academic library professionals is totally changed in this digital environment, from librarian to information manager / knowledge manager. To satisfy the information need of users at maximum level is the main goal of the library. Establishing a digital library without refreshing the information technology and information retrieval skills of the academic library professionals is a difficult task. The adoption of the e-resources has made great advantage over the library services. In fact, most of the users are satisfied with such facilities since they can easily retrieve their required information within a short period of time.
Libraries are an integral part of the knowledge society that surrounds it. The library is first and foremost a service. Its primary mission is to support the learning, teaching and research activity in any situation. The explosion of coronavirus known as Covid-19 has thrown the world into terror and anxiety. Quarantine and lockdownlead to reducethe levels of physical activity and turn into online job system.Library professional also install different apps “zoomapp” found most popular app for online job purposes.
Library and information science/Information Management is the field of business. Many library professionals built a ‘winning library marketing plan’ for the purpose to share and promote their services very effectively. As, Dr. Haroon Idrees (Late) the expert oflibrary and information science field said:
“The field of library and information science/ information management are in the business of information”
We as library professionals cannot ignore the changing library environment, and need to adopt ourselves to the digital library era.