THE SCIENTIFIC JOURNAL ON THEORY AND PRACTICE OF LIBRARIANSHIP
eISSN 2217-5563 ISSN (Print) 2217-5555
 





Ћирилица Latinica English
 


Predrag Jeremić
pega.jeremic@gmail.com

Dragana Sabovljev
dragana.sabovljev@gmail.com

Gradska narodna biblioteka „Žarko Zrenjanin“, Zrenjanin

doi: 10.19090/cit.2021.39.35-46
No. 39 (November 2021), p. 35-46


Work of Public Libraries in Serbia in Situation
Caused by the Covid-19 Pandemic


Summary

The text deals with the work of public libraries in Serbia in conditions caused by the Covid-19 pandemic. It is based on the questionnaire sent to the librarians of parent departments, members of the Section for the Parent Libraries of the Serbian Library Association. Since less than half of the colleagues answered the questionnaire, the authors supplemented their knowledge with the data presented during Biblionet, the professional and scientific meeting held in Leskovac in 2021, which was dedicated to this topic. The respondents’ answers were presented and interpreted, and attention was also given to the activities of public libraries on the official websites and social networks. This research provides an overview of the activities of libraries in the conditions of emergency and imminent danger to human health and lives. It shows the redirection of communication with users from the traditional provision of services in the institutions to a new, digital environment. It has been proven that these institutions have quickly and successfully adapted to the new circumstances and managed to animate a new user group by presenting their funds, collections, exhibitions, events, and various activities in the virtual world. The conclusions singled out by the respondents themselves can be divided into pessimistic and optimistic. It is obvious that librarians were concerned about the declining number of direct users and visits to the institutions, as well as about the users’ dissatisfaction with the impossibility of staying in reading rooms and freely searching books in library funds. It is the fact that many of the users, especially those who do not cope well with a virtual environment and do not use social networks, have been deprived of certain contents, but one of the answers of the librarians who participated in the research, which, in the opinion of the authors, could be applied to all libraries, was that all the users who approached librarians were given service. Optimistic conclusions refer to the creativity of librarians and the flexibility of institutions to adapt to the new environment and new working conditions. The result of these activities is attracting new user groups and creating different habits. The general conclusion is that the libraries will continue working in direct contact with the users but will also work in the virtual world and that their activities will continue being an important part of the social life of local communities.


Keywords:

public libraries, Republic of Serbia, Covid-19 pandemic, web pages, social networks, library funds, digital technologies, promotional activities, online services


Submitted: 26th October 2021
Correction to the manuscript: 8th November 2021
Accepted for publication: 11th November 2021

Creative Commons License
Work of Public Libraries in Serbia in Situation Caused by the Covid-19 Pandemic by Predrag Jeremić and Dragana Sabovljev is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.


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