Debbie Benrubi, Gleeson Library Technical Services Librarian, attended the International Federation of Library Associations (IFLA) Annual Congress in Wrocław, Poland, August 19-25th, 2017.
From the website: “…(IFLA) is the leading international body representing the interests of library and information services and their users. It is the global voice of the library and information profession. Founded in 1927 in Edinburgh, Scotland at an international conference… we now have more than 1,400 Members in over 140 countries around the world.” Gleeson Library is a member of IFLA.
Debbie noted that the Secretary General of IFLA, Gerald Leitner, is leading an effort to unify and amplify library voices worldwide with the Global Vision Discussion. Everyone interested in libraries was invited to participate. The responses to the questionnaire, will form the plan of action for IFLA’s goal: “to build literate, informed and participative societies.”
The American Library Association (ALA) Video Round Table nominated Debbie to represent ALA at IFLA and she was elected to the Standing Committee of the Audiovisual and Multimedia Section (AVMS) session in 2015. She chaired the AVMS’s joint session with the Information Literacy Section and the School Libraries Section at the 2017 World Library and Information Congress, with “Media is the Message: Critical Use of Video in the Digital Age” as the theme. 5 papers were presented, each showing different ways of using video in libraries, to an audience of approximately 200 people.
As a cataloger, Debbie was particularly interested in a session on enhancing controlled vocabularies to make it easier for researchers to find information about different aspects of indigenous people and cultures. Subject headings in a catalog use a controlled vocabulary to bring together resources on a particular subject. For instance, one cataloger presented his work in augmenting Library of Congress Subject Headings (LCSH) to include more Native American tribes’ names. Another presentation discussed a joint project of three Scandinavian national libraries developing subject headings to bring out aspects of the Sami people and culture of the far North.
Justine Withers, Gleeson Library Electronic and Continuing Resources Catalog Librarian, attended the 4th African Library Summit and 2nd AfLIA Conference. It was held in Yaounde, Cameroon, May 16th-19th, 2017.
AfLIA stands for African Library and Information Associations and Institutions. From the website: AfLIA is an independent international not-for-profit organization which pursues the interests of library and information associations, library and information services, librarians and information workers and the communities they serve in Africa. More details here.
The theme of this year’s conference was, “Libraries in the Development Agenda: Repositioning African Libraries to deliver on the Future We Want.”
According to Justine, “Much of the discussion revolved around the inseparable relationship between access to information and meeting the goals set forth in the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. I attended the conference in order to learn how I could assist some local libraries in Cameroon and how they handle the technical challenges of electronic resources. I learned the importance of meeting users where they are — including the technology they have access to and actual geographic location — and supporting local resources as much as possible. I will be thinking about how our own researchers access the library catalog as I make our resources visible.”
If you’d like more information about the conference, the program is downloadable in .pdf format here.
David Ferguson, Acquisitions Coordinator, Gleeson Library, att
ended the NASIG (North American Serials Interest Group) Annual Conference in 2016. A particularly interesting and alarming session he attended was, “We went mobile! (or did we?): reviewing and promoting third-party device-neutral library resources.”
The University of San Diego librarians discovered they were unaware how many students used mobile devices to access e-journals via the library website. They also realized they did not know how many successful versus unsuccessful attempts are made, if some providers are better than others, and the fact that vendors offer apps for either iPad or iPhone but often not both.
After a thorough study, they established a workflow when promoting mobile access and implemented a “training the trainers” (especially public service staff) to help address any questions or problems encountered. Check out the results of the study in their published article: http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/0361526X.2017.1297594