Women Academic Library Leadership in Pakistan: A Qualitative Study on the Journey of Career Progression and Serving the Community

Murtaza Ashiq, Shafiq Ur Rehman, Sadaf Rafiq, Muhammad Tariq

Abstract

Women library professionals are greatly underrepresented in key leadership positions, especially in the developing countries. This study explored the women academic library leadership in Pakistan and investigated the major challenges faced by women leaders during their ascending to the top, the key indicator of their success, as well as the community services and professional contributions made by them during the course of their careers. Qualitative research design was used and data were collected by conducting in-depth interviews of 16 senior woman library leaders in Pakistan. The findings indicated that organizational challenges, family responsibilities, and gender discrimination were the major barriers that hindered the women leaders during their career progression. The key indicators of their success were effective use of technology, professional commitment, academic contributions, community services, family support, international exposure, and continuous learning. The implications of the study highlight the various areas of improvement for women library leadership.

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