Exploring Information Needs of Swahili Speakers in Tanzania

Telemala, Joseph and Suleman, Hussein (2018) Exploring Information Needs of Swahili Speakers in Tanzania, Proceedings of 20th International Conference on Asia-Pacific Digital Libraries, 19-22 November 2018, Hamilton, New Zealand, Springer.

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Studies investigating the information needs and search behaviour of Swahili speakers are rare, and this correlates with little Swahili information available online and few tools to support its access. In this study, we explored the information needs of Swahili speakers to understand their search behaviour - search language and preferences on language of information among professional and ordinary citizens. We interviewed 11 library/information experts and Swahili language specialists from Tanzania. The results indicate that Swahili speakers are increasingly searching for information from the Web. Despite the fact that many of them are not competent in English, they preferred English to Kiswahili as their search language due to the relevant results they get. They claimed, furthermore, that outdated Swahili information and scarcity of Swahili documents on the Web were other reasons for them to prefer English.

Item Type: Conference paper
Subjects: Information systems > Information retrieval
Date Deposited: 09 Nov 2018
Last Modified: 10 Oct 2019 15:31
URI: http://pubs.cs.uct.ac.za/id/eprint/1289

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