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Article
Publication date: 1 February 1990

Arthur Midwinter

The links between expenditure and service provision on rural publiclibraries in Scotland are analysed, and patterns of provision betweenauthorities noted. Conclusions are…

Abstract

The links between expenditure and service provision on rural public libraries in Scotland are analysed, and patterns of provision between authorities noted. Conclusions are drawn concerning the adequacy of provision in these areas, the effects of the new community charge and patterns of public library provision.

Details

Library Review, vol. 39 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0024-2535

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Book part
Publication date: 28 September 2016

Peter White

The roles of ‘conventional’ (fixed-route and fixed-timetable) bus services is examined and compared to demand-responsive services, taking rural areas in England as the…

Abstract

Purpose

The roles of ‘conventional’ (fixed-route and fixed-timetable) bus services is examined and compared to demand-responsive services, taking rural areas in England as the basis for comparison. It adopts a ‘rural’ definition of settlements under a population of 10,000.

Design/methodology/approach

Evidence from the National Travel Survey, technical press reports and academic work is brought together to examine the overall picture.

Findings

Inter-urban services between towns can provide a cost-effective way of serving rural areas where smaller settlements are suitably located. The cost structures of both fixed-route and demand-responsive services indicate that staff time and cost associated with vehicle provision are the main elements. Demand-responsive services may enable larger areas to be covered, to meet planning objectives of ensuring a minimum of level of service, but experience often shows high unit cost and public expenditure per passenger trip. Economic evaluation indicates user benefits per passenger trip of similar magnitude to existing average public expenditure per trip on fixed-route services. Considerable scope exists for improvements to conventional services through better marketing and service reliability.

Practical implications

The main issue in England is the level of funding for rural services in general, and the importance attached to serving those without access to cars in such areas.

Social implications

The boundary between fixed-route and demand-responsive operation may lie at relatively low population densities.

Originality/value

The chapter uses statistical data, academic research and operator experience of enhanced conventional bus services to provide a synthesis of outcomes in rural areas.

Details

Paratransit: Shaping the Flexible Transport Future
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78635-225-5

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Article
Publication date: 16 September 2011

Stephen Moore

This paper seeks to explore the views and experiences of female offenders with problem drug/alcohol use living in rural areas and to provide their perspectives on…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper seeks to explore the views and experiences of female offenders with problem drug/alcohol use living in rural areas and to provide their perspectives on shortcomings in support services.

Design/methodology/approach

The research used in‐depth interviews with (ex) female offenders with problem drug/alcohol use living in rural areas in the East of England.

Findings

The research indicates that the barriers to adequate provision of services for women in rural areas have distinct, but overlapping, gender and geographical elements. Gender issues centre on the failure to see the female offenders in the context of their roles as mothers and partners. The geographical element includes a significant and under‐reported lack of public transport and childcare support.

Research limitations/implications

Given the localised and opportunistic nature of the study, no attempt is made to claim that one can necessarily generalise from these results to all rural areas.

Practical implications

Increased recognition of women attending drug/alcohol support services as mothers with children, faced with problems of organising childcare, or accessing public transport. This is exacerbated by inadequate, public transport provision.

Originality/value

The importance of service providers recognizing the insight which clients could provide through their own lived experiences as users of services. In a rural situation with thinly spread provision, the importance of women‐only provision should not take precedence over quality of service provision.

Details

Drugs and Alcohol Today, vol. 11 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1745-9265

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Article
Publication date: 1 November 2004

Kerry Benstead, Rachel Spacey and Anne Goulding

This research paper explores alternatives to the mobile library service in providing a public library service to rural communities in England and the impacts of best…

Abstract

This research paper explores alternatives to the mobile library service in providing a public library service to rural communities in England and the impacts of best value, public library standards and social inclusion policy on provision. A questionnaire survey was completed by librarians in public library authorities in England with rural hinterlands. The data derived were supplemented by follow‐up case studies. It was found that achieving social inclusion objectives and the results of best value reviews were the greatest motivating factors for much of the development of alternative library service delivery in rural areas, and that village halls were the most popular place for co‐location of library services. ICT was felt to have impacted positively on rural library service delivery and its use was demonstrated in co‐location facilities and learning centres. However, some authorities fail to consult users and non‐users in rural locations. This paper provides public library practitioners and researchers with a picture of public library service provision to rural area communities and shows the impact of Government‐driven policy. It appears that there is varying appreciation by public library authorities of rural communities’ distinct nature.

Details

New Library World, vol. 105 no. 11/12
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0307-4803

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Article
Publication date: 1 April 2003

Sarah Haggis and Anne Goulding

Discusses alternative methods of providing a public library service to one‐house stop clients of south Lincolnshire’s mobile libraries. A literature review revealed a lack…

Abstract

Discusses alternative methods of providing a public library service to one‐house stop clients of south Lincolnshire’s mobile libraries. A literature review revealed a lack of up‐to‐date cost information for alternative methods of service provision. Four methods were selected for further investigation: books by mail; village shop libraries; extending the housebound service; and transporting clients to the library. Annual cost and cost per issue were calculated and compared to the cost of the mobile library. Staff and users were also surveyed for their opinions of the current service and the alternative methods proposed. The results of the costing exercises showed that transporting users to the library was the most cost effective method but this was not popular with the current users of the service. Services considering replacing the one‐house stop mobile service will also need to consider issues including social inclusion, best value and the public library standards.

Details

New Library World, vol. 104 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0307-4803

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Article
Publication date: 21 November 2008

Valeda F. Dent Goodman

The purpose of this paper is to provide an overview of the historical development of the rural library services in Africa, and highlight modern rural village libraries in…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to provide an overview of the historical development of the rural library services in Africa, and highlight modern rural village libraries in Ghana and Burkina Faso within this context.

Design/methodology/approach

The information in the article comes from a number of different impact studies, including one research study of the rural village libraries in Ghana and one research study of the rural village libraries in Burkina Faso. In particular, the studies examined the impact and role of the libraries on the communities they serve, and enquiries included library use by students, reading habits, leisure reading, attitudes of community members towards the library, and the library's role in academic support. The methodology included focus groups, interviews, questionnaires, examination of library circulation information, and many hours of observation. A review of the professional literature is also provided to contextualize the historical review and the findings from the studies.

Findings

Findings indicate the rural village libraries in Ghana and Burkina Faso are successful village/community libraries that are of great benefit to their users. The models for development of these libraries might be used in other similar rural villages to serve both schools and the community.

Research limitations/implications

Future research might include the review and evaluation of other rural libraries in Asia, the Caribbean, and South America, and an analysis of their impact and sustainability.

Practical implications

The information presented in this paper offers some basic considerations in terms of the implementation of rural library services, which have great potential to bridge information gaps in rural areas. Provision of such services is becoming increasingly important as more and more of the world's population desires to become literate. At the same time, efforts to provide access to information must integrate cultural practices, local languages and traditions, and operate from a place of respect and understanding by involving those who will be served in outreach efforts.

Originality/value

The paper builds on previous studies of rural village libraries in Uganda, and provides more support for the village/community library concept as being a potentially powerful solution for provision of reading materials in rural areas. Literacy continues to be a major factor in terms of economic and personal development in underdeveloped nations, and all libraries, but perhaps these small village libraries even more so, have the potential to play an important role in the eradication of illiteracy, development of a reading culture, and provision of services for the “newly literate”.

Details

New Library World, vol. 109 no. 11/12
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0307-4803

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Article
Publication date: 3 October 2016

Guangjian Xu and Yan Wu

The purpose of this paper is to examine the financing and provision of basic public services in China. The main issue addressed is how to reform the public finance system…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to examine the financing and provision of basic public services in China. The main issue addressed is how to reform the public finance system to achieve quality and fairness in the provision of basic public services.

Design/methodology/approach

Based on an historical analysis of the functional transformation of the public finance system in China and on an empirical analysis of the current public finance system and the public service provision system, a comprehensive understanding was gained about the relationship between the financing and provision of basic public services.

Findings

The paper argues that there is a close relationship between the provision of basic public services and the functional changes made to the public finance system. Based on a systematic retrospective study of the Chinese Government’s efforts to improve basic public services over the last three decades, this paper offers policy suggestions on further public finance restructuring that would support better service provision.

Originality/value

By analyzing issues in the public service provision system, this paper contributes to the debate about the efficiency improvement made to governmental functions in China.

Details

Asian Education and Development Studies, vol. 5 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2046-3162

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Article
Publication date: 11 April 2008

Nana Owusu‐Frimpong

To ascertain customers' usage level and perceptions of the image of rural community banks (RCBs) in Ghana. This research examines whether women and men differ in their…

Abstract

Purpose

To ascertain customers' usage level and perceptions of the image of rural community banks (RCBs) in Ghana. This research examines whether women and men differ in their levels of satisfaction and expectation about the banks' services. It also assesses the contribution of RCBs towards infrastructural development in the rural areas.

Design/methodology/approach

Both desk and primary research methods were employed. Face‐to‐face interviews took place in 15 bank branches in the eastern region of Ghana. Over 170 respondents consisting of 105 males and 65 females co‐operated for this study. Analyses are presented in a statistical format using mean score and t‐test.

Findings

RCBs are perceived as fairly active in rural infrastructural development, and have collaborated with NGOs to help identify, mobilise and educate rural groups in the usage and benefits of banking services. Men and women are gradually cultivating the banking culture. Both genders perceive the quality of financial advice, provision of information and service delivery as areas that need significant improvement. There are no significant differences between both genders in their perceptions and expectation of the banks services.

Research limitations/implications

The sample size was limited to only one part of Ghana and may not be entirely representative.

Practical implications

This study provides a meaningful insight into consumer behaviour in rural banking sector and useful platform for future studies in marketing of financial services in a developing country context.

Originality/value

The study is unique in that it looks at a rural banking service provision in a sub‐Sahara African country, a setting that markedly differs from the traditional high street banks sectors in the developed world. The results will enable financial service providers to consider the changing needs and wants of RCBs customers.

Details

International Journal of Emerging Markets, vol. 3 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1746-8809

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Article
Publication date: 1 January 2006

Valeda Frances Dent

To provide background on how the Kitengesa Community Library in rural Uganda, which serves as both a community library and a school library, might be seen as a model for…

Abstract

Purpose

To provide background on how the Kitengesa Community Library in rural Uganda, which serves as both a community library and a school library, might be seen as a model for other similar libraries in developing countries. To use a case study of the library to highlight certain characteristics of rural libraries as developed by B.J. Mostert and presented in his 1998 article.

Design/methodology/approach

The information in the article comes from a two‐year study of the Kitengesa Community Library. The methodology included focus groups, interviews, door‐to‐door visits, questionnaires, examination of library circulation information, and many hours of observation. Information from the study was then used to support the comparison to Mostert's characteristics of the rural community library. A review of the professional literature is also provided.

Findings

Findings indicate that the Kitengesa Community Library is a successful working model that might be used in other similar rural villages to serve both schools and the community. Implications of the findings are discussed in detail.

Research limitations/implications

Future research might include the impact of the library on the achievement of students, and the impact of the library on the teaching and learning practices of users.

Practical implications

The information presented in this paper offers some basic considerations in terms of the implementation of rural library services. Provision of such services is becoming increasingly important as more and more of the world's population becomes literate, and more of the world's attention is focused on the welfare of those living on the African continent.

Originality/value

The study itself is unique in that the data hail from a two‐year study of a small village library. Literacy is a major factor in terms of development in underdeveloped nations, and libraries have the potential to play an important role in the eradication of illiteracy, and provision of services for the “newly literate”.

Details

New Library World, vol. 107 no. 1/2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0307-4803

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Article
Publication date: 7 March 2016

Mika Immonen and Sanna Sintonen

Ageing and population movement from rural regions to regional centres have raised new questions regarding the value of locally available services. The purpose of this…

Abstract

Purpose

Ageing and population movement from rural regions to regional centres have raised new questions regarding the value of locally available services. The purpose of this paper is to analyse the influence of individuals’ functioning status, housing arrangements and social context on services value. The authors approach the topic with the following research question: how do the personal capabilities and social spheres of rural residents influence demand for local services?

Design/methodology/approach

Results are based on a postal survey conducted in southeast Finland. Data were collected using a random sample of 3,000 people from age 60 to 90 years in rural areas surrounding a regional centre. A total of 1,121 valid responses were received.

Findings

The influence of individuals’ mobility on value depended on the travel distance between services and living arrangements. The authors find that subjective norms and social interactions influenced attitudes; meanwhile, the government indirectly influenced the perceived value of services.

Research limitations/implications

The self-efficacy of future rural populations in adopting new services would also be a worthwhile topic. Further research should compare different living arrangements and cultures.

Originality/value

The findings of this study highlight the importance of community-wide interventions. Governmental influence did not have a direct influence on perceived value of service but has significance for the subjective norm. The moderation effect, however, revealed that governmental influence is significant where community population density is high.

Details

International Journal of Public Sector Management, vol. 29 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0951-3558

Keywords

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