What is an e-library?

I am curious.

“What is an e-library?”

I am sure some will wonder why I even ask this question, as I am a librarian, working in the 21st century, so
at least I should have some answers, so why pose the question at all?

I ask this question, because during the last few days I have seen an advert in both The Ghanaian Times and the Daily Graphic newspapers for the following:

Invitation for Tenders
The Republic of Ghana
Ministry of Education
National Competitive Tendering (NCT)

Supply, installation and configuration of an e-library system.

Lot 1: Software application – quantity 1
Lot 2: Hardware – quantity 2

I have to admit that I wondered what was wanted?

Is the Ministry of Education planning to install an electronic library of e-books and e-journals? Or does it want to set up a virtual place where these could be placed? What will be the content of this e-library: books, textbooks, journals, articles, conference papers?  Who was it for? Would it be open access? or part of an intranet? If so, where would this content come from? How would it be managed? and promoted?

Or is this to be an institutional repository for the Ministry – basically an archive of documents and files produced by staff, ministers, consultants etc…? Or is it some kind of electronic filing system for the MoE?

I showed a copy of the advert to some professional colleagues, and they too were puzzled. Neither heard of this particular tender or what it was for, and both of these individuals are at the top of the library profession in Ghana.

NB:  Even the Public Procurement Authority doesn’t give many details in its tender details

So the question remains unanswered: “What is an e-library”?

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2 thoughts on “What is an e-library?

  1. they might worry that you are asking too many questions:). Probably someone’s pet project. I find that people carve out enclaves of power in the ministries and sometimes over issues that they know nothing about. Just to chop a little or a lot of money. Hopefully, this leads somewhere good.

    • Well, I guess we just have to wait, and see. It does me almost weep when I look at the Ministry of Education website here which has been “under construction” for the last two or three years!

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