Survey works, carried out by 15 MSc (Information Science) students of the School of Information Studies for Africa (SISA) in the course of their dissertation work, reveal some important facts related to information systems and services in the countries studied. This paper analyses the student dissertations in order to present an overview of the library and information systems and services available in seven eastern and southern African countries-Ethiopia, Kenya, Malawi, Sudan, Tanzania, Uganda and Zambia. It is noted that the state of library and information services needs to be improved in all respects; and there is a trend towards introduction of IT, albeit quite slow, in university, special and research, and national libraries and documentation centres. The condition of public, school and college libraries is very poor in all the countries concerned. Lack of a national policy on information systems and services in the countries concerned results in the inconsistent and insufficient growth of information services in different sectors. Major problems in the area are: lack of resources, particularly foreign currencies, lack of awareness on the part of planners and policy makers, lack of trained manpower, lack of adequate servicing facilities for IT equipment, and the continuing political, social, and natural problems that prevail in most African countries.
- student dissertations
- library and information systems
- eastern Africa
- Southern Africa