Libraries and LIS education in Vietnam: a view from the outside

Bernadette Welch (School of Business Information Technology & Logistics, RMIT University, Melbourne, Australia)
Janet Murray (Murray Consulting & Training Pty Ltd, Brighton East, Australia)

Library Management

ISSN: 0143-5124

Publication date: 27 July 2010



Documenting some of the developments in libraries, and LIS education in Vietnam, this paper aims to suggest directions for achieving goals of education, collaboration, policy development, and access to resources in this rapidly developing country.


The report is based on an extensive literature review of available English language material together with information obtained from structured interviews with a group of LIS professionals in Vietnam. These data support an analysis of current initiatives, programs and developments taking place in the different library sectors in Vietnam.


Significant developments have occurred in Vietnam in terms of national policy agendas and development of the internet backbone. The pace of change, particularly in the national and university sectors, has been dramatic but the pace of change at other levels is somewhat slower. Community development, access to electronic resources, and education of information professionals are identified as areas for development. In particular, the paper focuses on the emergence of improved professional communication, which is facilitated by an improved ICT infrastructure within Vietnam, which allows managers to cooperate and share experiences more effectively.

Research limitations/implications

The major limitation to the research is the fact that much of the literature about this topic is only available in the Vietnamese language. This research was conducted using the available English language material, and the interview responses of the LIS professionals in Vietnam. Further research is needed by Vietnamese library professionals on the state of the industry, and the directions being taken at the different levels.

Practical implications

The study identifies a number of strategies, and areas for development, which could have an impact on training of library staff, and moving towards more collaborative approaches at all levels of library resourcing.


This paper brings together information published in a variety of sources, not always readily available to give a more detailed view of library development in Vietnam for the international community.



Welch, B. and Murray, J. (2010), "Libraries and LIS education in Vietnam: a view from the outside", Library Management, Vol. 31 No. 7, pp. 521-534.

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