Bringing Libraries into the ICT Policy Conversation in the Philippines

This brief examines the current state of libraries in the Philippines and their potential to partner with the Government to ensure social inclusion and access to information.

The government of the Philippines has demonstrated a commitment to inclusive growth through good governance and citizen empowerment, and in 2011 it submitted an action plan to the Open Government Partnership. The government has also developed the Philippine Digital Strategy (2011–2016) — an information and communication technology (ICT) blueprint designed to support the goal of sustained, broad-based development. The government recognizes the importance of ICTs for citizens’ access to information, participation, and empowerment, while being mindful of the gain and lessons learned by similar e-government initiatives.

If the 1,124 public libraries in the Philippines coordinate with other information access programs — and find a way to integrate into the country’s digital strategy — they can help bridge the gap in services that directly contribute to community development.