Scenario of rural library services in Bangladesh: Proposed model for the future
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The purpose of the paper is to identify and examine the current state of rural library services in Bangladesh, a country currently in the early stages of shifting towards a more information-based society. This paper is based on fieldwork conducted in 2001 and 2003 and is designed to contribute to the current knowledge of rural library services in Bangladesh. It is based on empirical research through extensive field visits and face-to-face interviews with the field level operators, as well as managers and top executives of the programs. The paper provides a brief scenario of information services provided in rural areas of Bangladesh including radio and TV programs dedicated to rural dwellers; agriculture extension services; print media services; family planning and health services. A few notable library and information technology services providers in rural Bangladesh the Bangladesh Rural Advancement Committee (BRAC) and the Community Development Library (CDL), Dhaka Ahsania Mission and the Village Computer and Internet Facility Centre of Grameen Communication (a sister concern of the famous Grameen initiative) are discussed as the main focus of this article. These organisations provided a good basis for assessing rural library services to the disadvantaged. Finally this paper proposes that a rural multipurpose community library and information centre could be a more realistic way of disseminating information by both government and non-government agencies.
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