The contribution of the National Library of South Africa towards the achievement of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)

MAEPA, Maisela Edward and MARUMO, Khomotso (2016) The contribution of the National Library of South Africa towards the achievement of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Paper presented at: IFLA WLIC 2016 – Columbus, OH – Connections. Collaboration. Community in Session 115 - National Information and Library Policy.

Bookmark or cite this item: http://library.ifla.org/id/eprint/1534
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Language: English (Original)
Available under licence Creative Commons Attribution.

Abstract

The contribution of the National Library of South Africa towards the achievement of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)

The attainment of the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals requires a concerted effort from government and other role-players in order to ensure that the Goals are achieved through a sustained, focused and coordinated approach. Like many other countries on a developmental trajectory, South Africa is plagued by poverty, high levels of illiteracy, unemployment and gender inequality, amongst other challenges. These are some of the seventeen areas that have been identified by the United Nations as being key to the attainment of sustainable development. As a national resource, the National Library of South Africa is tasked with the responsibility of preserving the cultural heritage of the people of South Africa and fostering social cohesion. It also runs a number of programmes that contribute directly or indirectly to the attainment of Sustainable Development Goals. As a result of these programmes, the NLSA contributes immensely to the education of young adults through provision of free access to ICT’s, reading and research spaces and workshops aimed at preparing young people for the job market. This paper will profile the areas in which the National Library plays a role in various ways, such as providing relevant information that relates to some of the Goals, such as information on climate change to support researchers and providing health-related information, as well as information on how to access government services. An analysis of the nature of information requests by the public will be conducted to determine their information needs and how these relate to SDGs. A matrix that maps the contribution of the NLSA to some of the Sustainable Development Goals will be developed in order to identify specific SDG’s that the NLSA has an impact on. The paper is intended to stimulate debate on how National Libraries should support government initiatives and programmes to contribute towards the achievement of SDGs.

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