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Harnessing digital power for relevance: status of digital transformation in selected university libraries in Uganda

Sarah Nakaziba (Aga Khan University, Kampala, Uganda)
Patrick Ngulube (Department of Interdisciplinary Research and Postgraduate Studies, University of South Africa, Pretoria, South Africa)

Collection and Curation

ISSN: 2514-9326

Article publication date: 9 January 2024

Issue publication date: 26 March 2024




This study aims to assess the extent to which Uganda university libraries have implemented digital transformation technologies and to determine the facilitators and barriers affecting the implementation of digital transformation in selected university libraries in Uganda.


This study used a convergent parallel mixed methods design. It was conducted in six selected university libraries in Uganda, which were in three private and three public universities. The study sample included 103 librarians with a minimum qualification of a bachelor’s degree and six library directors.


The findings indicated that there was an average (n = 37, 48.7%) implementation of digital transformation in the selected university libraries in Uganda. Some of the barriers hindering digital transformation included inadequate funding, lack of awareness of digital technologies, inadequate ICT skills, insufficient ICT infrastructure and limited staff among others. There is a need for library management to provide support in the form of funds, policies and human resources to implement such digital transformation.

Research limitations/implications

The criteria for choosing universities were those that have been around for at least 10 years. The reason for this was that it was assumed that these universities would have well-established staff development programmes and procedures as well as be likely to have incorporated technology into their services, including libraries. This study’s limitations stem from the fact that this criterion for selection might not apply to all Ugandan university libraries, particularly those that are less than 10 years old and may not have been well represented in this study.


The magnitude of the problem of digital transformation in university libraries in Uganda is unclear because of the limited research available in the Uganda library and information science field. This study presents the status of digital transformation in Uganda university libraries.



The authors would like to show their gratitude to Mary Namuguzi, Shamim Namukasa, and Joseph Atukwase for their contribution towards this study.

Funding: No funds of any kind were provided for the study.

Credit author statement.

Sarah Nakaziba: Conceptualization, methodology, investigation, writing original draft.

Patrick Ngulube: Supervision, conceptualization, reviewing and editing.

Competing interests: The authors affirm that no financial or commercial relationship might be construed as a potential conflict of interest.


Nakaziba, S. and Ngulube, P. (2024), "Harnessing digital power for relevance: status of digital transformation in selected university libraries in Uganda", Collection and Curation, Vol. 43 No. 2, pp. 33-44.



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