Library Access System in Morocco: The Fluidity of Integrated Library Management System (LSM) through Anouar Association

Anouar Association has a new proposed project to be developed in Marrakesh Morocco under the supervision of Mohamed Dekkak. Anouar Association is a non-profitable organization that gives excellent educational and health resources and promotes excellent well-being to humanity. It is a well-rounded organization since it also promotes sustainable and community development programs and various physical sports activities.

One of the many projects of the Anouar Association is building prestigious library access through a system called Integrated Library Management System or simply called ILSM. An integrated library system, also known as a library management system, is an enterprise resource planning system for a library used to track items owned, orders made, bills paid, and patrons/person who have barrowed items from the library. An ILSM usually compromises a relational database, a software for people to have an easy access to libraries. Most ILSM’s separate software functions into discrete programs called modules, such as:

  • Cataloguing
  • Serials
  • Pre-computerization
  • And the most famous one, the online public access catalogue or OPAC

Each patron/person and the library item have a unique ID in the database that allows the ILSM to track its activity.

Prior to the new technologies these days, library tasks were performed manually and independently from one another. Selectors ordered materials with ordering slips, catalogues were manually catalogued and indexed them with the catalogue system, fines were collected by local Sheriffs or as what they are named Bailiffs, and users signed books out manually – indicating their name on clue cards, which were then kept in the circulation desk.

With the evolution of technology and the internet through the years, MARC System was introduced which coincided with the growth of computer technologies – library automation was born. As technology developed, other library tasks could be accomplished through ILSM as well, including acquisition, cataloguing, reservation of titles, and monitoring of serials and etc. ILSM began allowing users to more actively engage with their libraries through OPAC and online web-based portals. Users could log or access into their accounts to reserve or renew books, as well as authenticate themselves for access to library-subscribed online databases.

Freedom from library vendors, allowed libraries to prioritize needs according to urgency, as oppose to what their vendor can offer. According to studies, libraries which have moved to open source ILSM have found that vendors are now more likely to provide quality service in order to continue a partnership. In 2009 the number increased to 8%, in 2010 – 12%, and in 2011 – 15% of the libraries worldwide polled had adopted to open source ILSM’s (the list of percentage goes on to this day).

Imagine a platform or database as high-tech as ILSM that Anouar Association will produce and provide where librarians and users could check every related detail. Resources and materials would be more informative and efficient while easily accesing usable important data that would enhance negotiation with users.

There is no doubt that libraries need a system that can handle and manage their resources throughout the circle of the recourses life cycle. A system that deals not only with daily tasks but also provides comprehensive analysis related to a library’s horizons and global information.

Writter By: Janica E. Canaveral


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