MoU with 49 Universities, Digital Libraries Helps Overcoming Disparity between Science and Information
Solo, Central Java - As many as 49 universities in Central Java signed Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with National Library, on Monday (16/12). The MoU was signed at the sidelines of National Seminar and Regional Meeting (Musda) of Central Java University Library Forum (FPPTI) at Universitas Muhammadiyah of Surakarta (UMS) campus. In the MOU draft, the two parties agreed to jointly utilise digital library repository, INLISlite, improve the quality of library human resources, promote library and reading culture, as well as preserve printed and recorded works (KCKR).
On the opening of the event, Chairman of Central Java FPPTI Wiji Suwarno stressed the importance of libraries in the world of education, especially in universities. Not just a book warehouse but an information centre. At several world-renowned campuses, the existence of library is of high concern. In fact, it is one indicator of higher education that has special quality. A good university should also have good quality library.
"The rectors and directors of higher education actually understand the benefits of libraries, it's just that they don't pay enough attention. Therefore, hopefully the signing of this MOU will be a trigger, a turning point of universities," added Wiji.
Meanwhile, UMS Rector Sofyan Anif commented on the development of science and technology that slowly leads people away from library; feeling everything can be accomplished with technology and applications. Science and Technology indeed provides convenience. "As a matter of fact, library is the strategic key if we talk about the quality of education. This means that the signification of library must be expanded. And science will not develop if it does not have network," said Sofyan.
In line with UMS Rector, Head of National Library Legal Affairs and Planning Bureau Joko Santoso said that the essence of networking in the implementation of MoU is the formulation of activities according to the agreement.
In his presentation Joko Santoso explained the development and distribution of libraries from the western end to the eastern part of Indonesia. Of the 164,610 libraries in Indonesia, 6,552 are university libraries. Meanwhile, the greater distribution of libraries is in Java as many as 47.89% and Sumatra 23.55%. The east the smaller. "In a simple sense, there is a disparity in the distribution of knowledge and information," he explained.
Now to overcome this gap, the development of digital libraries is one of the solutions provided by National Library. This includes the development of transportation-based librarys as an integral part to overcome the gap in the comunity in accessing knowledge and information.
The World Culture Index survey gave a score of 52.92% to Indonesia in the aspect of reading fondness. This value puts of Indonesian people’s reading activity into medium category; although it continues to experience growth from 2016.
"This shows that it is not the lack of public interest in reading, but access to the availability of reading material and inadequate quantity of reading material sources," explained the Head of Legal Affairs and Planning Bureau.