Two days ago I received a pleasant surprise: IFLA’s Professional Committee (PC) has started its own blog site.
Picture: informal gathering of Finnish library activists (2010)
In Helsinki many people expressed an active interest in strengthening the flow of information and communication back and forth among us all. Anna Maria Tammaro proposed a working group to encourage dialogue about communication issues during the next few weeks.
The new IFLADIAL group has just posted an opening statement (English, Spanish) on the web and invites participation through different channels. The discussion will be linked through the use of a shared hashtag (#ifladial). We plan a proposal for the next PC meeting, in December.
The future is already here, it’s just not very evenly distributed. (William Gibson, 1993).
As an IFLA 2.0 enthusiast, I’ve collected sixteen examples from the IFLA corner of the world:
- There are lots of nice pictures from IFLA at the organization’s flickr account
- IFLA President Ingrid Parent and President-Elect Sinikka Sipilä have just started to Twitter
- Fiona Bradley at IFLA HQ reports from the BSLA project in Semantic Library (blog). She started blogging in 1999 …
- At this year’s IFLACamp in Hämeenlinna all tweets were projected on the big screen in the main meeting room
- The flickr pix are not CC, however – so they can not be reused by the IFLA community without applying for and being granted permission …
Librarians, teachers and researchers who need ISO standard 11620 – on library performance indicators - in their work, have a range of economic choices.
You can buy the paper version for USD 294 in the US. At the current rate (WolframAlpha) this is about 236 euro. Or you can go for the PDF at
- 204 UKP in Great Britain – 258 euro
- 2110 SEK in Sweden - 255
- USD 235 in the United States - 189
- 711 DKK (+ VAT) in Denmark – 95 (excl. VAT)
- 112 Swiss francs from ISO – 93
- 105 Lt in Lithuania(n) – 30
I am just back from Helsinki.
Picture: LATINA training at Makerere University Library
This was my first conference as an officer. Seeing the circus from the inside was energizing. IFLA activities follows an annual rhythm. In August we try to cram several months of meetings, discussions, planning and decision making into a single week. Here is a personal summary of the last year:
- to clear my own mind
- to keep friends and colleagues updated
- to do some open-ended thinking about IFLA communications
Finland was a great host. The whole gathering felt like a group therapy workshop – or perhaps a mixed sauna – with four thousand people.
- You don’t have to be mad to go there, but it helps.
[Plinius = Tord Høivik. This is a long blog post ... ]
The IFLA conference in Helsinki demonstrated that communication patterns on the web are changing. Ordinary blogging is strongly down – compared with earlier conferences, while twittering is way up.
Less than fifty blog posts (with the wlic2012 tag) were published from April 1 till August 15. More than fifty tweets were published (or republished) during the last four hours, from 11.30 AM to 3.30 PM (Helsinki time).
This year’s IFLA Express was nicely designed, with main articles in the middel and RSS streams from both channels on the side: blogs to the left and tweets to the right.
The normal way of keeping up to date with the news flow is now to follow the relevant hash tag(s). Using Flipboard – or similar aggregators – I can select any hashtag and scan the global web for input. The results are presented in a magazine format, with a nice mix of pictures, text and tiny information boxes.
Proposing change is easy. Making change is hard.
Next week is IFLA time. My trip to Finland starts with the satellite conference in Turku on August 8-9 (Wed-Thu):
For about ten years I have spent fair amount of time looking at the design and use of performance indicators in libraries. I have been struck by the imbalance between the number of indicator proposals, on the one hand, and actual indicator practices, on the other.
Many administrators and library researchers, as well as a few practising librarians are eager to develop new indicators. They establish committees, conduct long discussions and write ambitious and well-meant plans. Their proposals may be discussed by the library community. But they are very seldom implemented.
This summer I will join forces with Maria Musoke, the dynamic director of Makerere University Library, to give a practical workshop on Statistics for Advocacy (SFA).
SFA is a one day workshop for library professionals that want to use statistics to study, to document and to promote their libraries. The workshop, which is planned for Monday July 2, will use the digital training facilities of Maklib. The curriculum was created by the Statistics and Evaluation Section of IFLA, the International Federation of Library and Information Associations.
Irene, Philliam and Monica from Maklib followed the LATINA course in Oslo in 2010.
The training is part of a coherent series of training modules developed by IFLA for competence building in library associations. The main focus is advocacy, or the ability
- to mobilize people, politicians, parties and governments
- at all levels in society
- to support libraries
- based on their actual contributions to the communities they serve
The program is called Building Strong Library Associations (BSLA).
This paper will be presented at the main IFLA conference in Helsinki:
Picture: From the LATINA Summer course in Oslo 2010
The LATINA approach
The LATINA Lab is a training and development unit within the Learning Centre and Library of the University College of Oslo and Akershus in Norway. The Lab develops, demonstrates and provides intensive training in teaching and learning metods that are based on the current state of – and emerging trends in – user-oriented ICT. This paper will summarize what we have learned from LATINA about using libraries as centers of e-learning, with Maklib and East Africa as an illustrative case.
The LATINA approach is not lecture based, but centered on student, group and production activities. We emphasize the importance of team-work between teachers as will as between students or participants. We generally use software that is free and widely used. Our work is increasingly web-based, cloud-based and multi-media oriented. We access, produce, edit and curate resources through a variety of devices, such as portable computers, touch tablets and mobile phones. The materials we develop before and during our courses are normally published on the open web with a CC license.
LATINA is an international training program aimed at librarians, students, teachers and other professionals who want to develop their digital skills and understanding.
Picture: students from LATINA Summer 2010.
This summer we are offering two courses:
- a two week course in Kampala, Uganda, in cooperation with the Makerere University Library (June 18-29)
- a three week course in Oslo, as part of the HiOA International Summer School (July 2-20)
Recruitment for the Oslo course has already started – see LATINA Summer 2012 for details. Application details for the Kampala course will be announced in February – at LATINA in Africa 2012 and other web sites.
Social media allow scattered individuals to mobilize.
In December, the first calls for papers for next year’s IFLA (in Helsinki this time) are published. This time, people started to complain about the high conference fees that IFLA charges. The original issue had to do with members of the IFLA sections – who are (s)elected for four years and have to find money for five consecutive conferences.
The debate has moved from the IFLA mailing list to a website change.org, which organizes petitions of all kinds. I just added my signature to the petition, with the following comment:
I am glad this debate has started – supported by the power of digital technology