ARCIS began operations in November 1990 at Nigeria’s premier university, the University of Ibadan, as the first tertiary-level educational institution in West Africa mandated to undertake research and consultancy services, and offer higher degree and continuing education training in information science. Information science is a multidisciplinary field that provides the required synergy among the various and more specialized disciplines and fields collectively described as the information sciences, and including information management, information systems, information technology, computer science, telecommunications, library science, records management, communication and media arts, etc.
ARCIS addresses, simultaneously, a series of African development problems that have demonstrable information services components, with a view to providing both short- and long-term solutions to them. More specifically, ARCIS
trains and retrains high-level personnel for African organizations and countries in information science, essentially through seminars, workshops and higher degree programmes. The graduates from the programmes are expected to become leaders in the practice of information science, as well as trainers of information services personnel at lower-levels;
engages in problem-resolution research into all aspects of information services in African countries;
serves as a reservoir of consultants in the information sciences to African governments and institutions in the public and private sectors;
provides expertise in the establishment, updating and application of appropriate standards for the construction, maintenance and effective utilization of digital content and databanks in Africa as a whole, and ECOWAS Member States in particular.
inculcates the spirit of innovation, quality and service in all its staff in regard to the development of information services components of Research and Development (R&D) programmes in Africa.