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  • Subject area(s): Marketing
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  • Published on: 14th September 2019
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Information Communication Technology (ICT) is the process of accessing or getting, storing, transferring, processing and transferring ideas and information through computers and other communication facilities (Fabunmi, 2012). Wikipedia defines ICT as the hardware and software of electronic devices such as computers, radio, television, digital camera, telephone, and computer's networks to improve communication. ICT has played a critical task in the development of any nation; it has been a tool to achieve social, economical, educational, scientific and technological development (Adedeji, 2010).

The development of science and technology has made incredible improvement in the lifestyle of the society today. It has Influence nearly everything in   life, especially, the magnetic words; IT has been mentioned around the world and has been incorporated in organization, managerial, development and marketing sectors. These are services offered with the aid of Information Communication Technology (ICT) which is faster and more effective. Libraries have not been exempted from the impact on the ICTs. The implementations of ICT in the library and Information Centers have made great improvement in the management of these centers. These have made libraries users friendly and have improved the efficiency of the library professionals (Kumar, 2011).

According to Khan et al.., (2012) Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) have impacted greatly on many fields including teaching, learning, research, and school management in a many way's. In libraries ICT has made information faster from acquisition, organization, storage, retrieval. ICT has improved the service delivery of library and information services reducing time, distance and other barriers. However, it is extensively settled that ICT adoption in libraries is not a solution for all library problems as initially assumed. Regardless of their remarkable potential, ICTs have also brought different challenges that must be dealt with to boost the efficiency of libraries in industrialized countries.

Avemari, (2011) describes library automation as computer use and general/ customized software designed for library and information services procedures that are used to perform specific information services deliver. Globally automation in libraries first began in the 1960s.  According to Muhammad (2014) Libraries automation began in the 1970s, where libraries began adopting software applications and Machine Readable Cataloguing (MARC). In 1980s, network technologies, optical discs, CD-ROMs and communications technologies were introduced. The major goal of the early technology applications was used in automation circulation, acquisitions and the catalogue to make library operation and services efficient and effective. The 1990s witnessed radical changes in the application ICTs in libraries such as the Internet, World Wide Web protocols. The 2000s is an era of digital libraries, virtual collections, paperless environment and 24/7 instant remote access to unlimited resources.

In Africa it began in 1950s, however, there were several challenges which were making it harder for academic libraries to adopt it, thus depriving them of the numerous benefits a library stands to achieve from automating its services (Thompson, 2014). In Kenya, most libraries, especially universities, schools, private organizations and little-funded institutions, were using Computerized Documentation System/Integrated Set of Information System (CDS/IS) library software. CDS/ISIS was used mainly for maintaining databases. For instance, the University of Nairobi maintains a list of research theses in Kenyan institutions of higher learning and a list of publications held in libraries in Kenya using Computerised Documentation System/Integrated Set of Information System(CDS/IS) (Mutula, 2012).

Kamba (2011) also noted that Information Communication and Technologies are not well spread and used in African higher learning institutions, mainly due to poor communication network, inadequate ICT hardware and software and government's ineffectiveness to offer sufficient finances to run the libraries. Inadequacy of skilled staff, inadequate funds, lack of awareness on the importance of ICT, lack of funds were among other factors have been cited by several authors.

1. 2 Statement of Problem

ICTs have become an important subject for all information providers Nebeolise (2013). This is because of its significance and application to the library operations such as quick and easier access of information and performing of library tasks with greater efficiency. Despite these benefits of ICT use many libraries are still not automated. Most of the problems faced by these libraries include; lack of sufficient funds to support the purchase of the technology, lack of qualified library professionals, lack of motivation and poor remuneration need among librarians to adopt ICT in their daily operations, lack of awareness of ICT potential users and poor attitude of library staff on automation. Other problems such as government policies, maintenance and security issues also consist of challenges faced by the libraries in the adoption of and implementation of ICT.

Libraries need adequate finances to obtain current ICT facilities such as scanners, photocopiers, computers, servers, software and paying of online and offline services such as e- journals and digital libraries which are very expensive to be purchased, and this has made many libraries lag behind because of insufficient funds. Lack of qualified professional has been a great hindrance to adoption since most of the staff lacks skills in to handle computers and other information technologies. Staff motivation, poor remuneration and attitude have also been considered as factors affecting adoption in libraries. This has contributed to migration of experienced staff in search of green pastures thus affecting the adoption of ICTs.  Staff attitude has also been considered as problem since most staff feel that automation of libraries will take away their jobs.

Lack of sufficient information on the potential user has also been a problem that hinders adoption, since most users had bad perception on ICT. University libraries need to sensitize their students and library staff that ICTs are very important part of library and library systems. They make it possible for information to be easily accessible, available with minimal effort. Given that libraries are the physical foundation of knowledge.  It is therefore critical that they are equipped and every opportunity to make them efficient explored. However various factors impede the progress for the adoption of ICTs in universities. Therefore the study will assess the factors that influence the adoption and use of ICT in the university libraries in Kenya.

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