Monthly Archives: April 2013

Report of the IFLA DIAL Working Group

Cut from the CPDWL Newsletter 

Ulrike Lang, Co-Chair of CPDWL

During the World Library and Information Congress (WLIC) in Helsinki the issue of communication within IFLA was discussed and an active interest in strengthening the flow of information and communication was expressed.

As a result of one of these discussions, during the Division IV Leadership Brief on August 12, led by Division Chair Anna Maria Tammaro, the IFLA DIAL Working Group was established to investigate concerns related to IFLA communication issues and to develop proposals for the Professional Committee to consider at its meeting in December 2012 and to develop a work strategy and establish a consultation mechanism.

The group posted an opening statement in English and Spanish inviting participation to contribute to web-based discussions using different channels, including IFLA-L and comments on several IFLA blogs.

A short online survey available in English and Spanish received replies with a good geographical spread. 45% of the respondents were IFLA Officers, SC Members or SIG Conveners.

The questions of the survey were also posted on twitter.

Q1. What do you think about the way that IFLA communicates with its activists?

Q2. What do you think about the way that IFLA communicates with its members?

Q3. What do you think about the way that IFLA communicates with the general public?

Q4. What do you think about the way that IFLA uses social media? (blogs, twitter, etc)

Q5. What suggestions do you have to improve communications within IFLA?

A majority of respondents would like to see more transparency in decision-making processes, and more open discussions rather than just decisions communicated to officers and other activists.

There was also the general feeling that officers are limited by rules and the communication between sections is minimal and should be encouraged.

Most communication between IFLA officers and activists is face to face at the WLICs and some email contacts.

If members cannot join the WLIC, there is almost no communication. And for many colleagues IFLA is something far away and expensive.

Most respondents would like ongoing, constant communication online. The need for an

intensified exchange in these virtual spheres and the shift towards more participating media like social networks was expressed.

The responses of the survey also pointed out that IFLA would benefit from a much stronger and more strategic social media strategy. So far (with some exceptions) new media have just been added on top of the old structure. Respondent missed personal blogging and twittering that allow readers to sense the breath and pulse of the organisation.

IFLA’s Professional Committee’s own blog, ProfSpeak: was welcomed as a very good start although it should be more visible – at the moment the new blog, which uses a locally hosted WordPress platform, is not visible on IFLA’s own list of featured blogs thus, new ProfSpeak posts are not visible under Recent posts.

IFLA is the sum of its members. Respondents expressed a wish for IFLA to change for transparency and collective learning purposes, and in order to try new ways of engaging with the community.

While library and information professionals are eager to demonstrate the contributions we are making to society through our work in learning and research, information literacy, health information provision, social engagement, etc., IFLA communicates from the inside out,

We need a communication strategy from the user’s perspective (outside in) to showcase our contributions and bring the voice of librarians to the public discussion, especially in political issues such as copyright, open access, freedom of speech, etc.

IFLA is quite a large body with many parts, and rules and deadlines are needed to ensure that things get done in a coordinated way.

IFLA is made up of many people from many countries and different backgrounds and so there are different communication needs at different levels, in different groups and for different purposes.

While an update is definitely required and social media offers great opportunities, we should not forget that a significant proportion of IFLA members and potential members still encounter barriers due to lack of access to technological advances as well as language and skill barriers. Lack of resources brings a gap in participation as wide as the digital divide, which also needs bridging. Balancing IFLA participation between members from developed countries and professionals from countries still in development through greater communication and involvement, incorporating those from countries which currently still do not have much of a presence, and communicating with and strengthening national library associations are good starting points to achieve more balance.

How could we change for the better?

We could change for the better by practicing real dialogue, deep listening and organisational learning.

For example the leadership forums could be arranged as platforms with GB and PC members’ presence for activists to ask and suggest, and put more effort into organising virtual meetings to encourage greater participation.

Some investment on the website may be appropriate in order to develop a more user friendly IFLA website, including check lists / FAQs for newcomers, a blog to get the answers to common questions etc.

Library blogs exist in a competitive universe. Web readers expect blogs to be relatively informal but also frequently updated.

The IFLA Dial working group is very happy that PC and GB accepted the statement and will start a discussion within the IFLA community.

We see the importance to include this topic in our section work and ask everyone to come up with suggestions how we can improve our work in line with the surrounding needs.

Members of the IFLA Dial Working Group of CPDWL are Catharina Isberg, Information Coordinator and Ulrike Lang, Co-Chair of CPDWL.

Recording available– Free IFLA/ALA webinar “New Librarians Global Connection: best practices, models and recommendations

Dear colleagues:

We continue to work to provide opportunities for membership participation via new worldwide online programming. Here, below, is the link to the recording of the IFLA/ALA free webinar with Speakers:
IFLA President Elect, Sinikka Sipila from Finland:: Susanne Riedel, former President of German Library Association:: Kate Byrne, Program Coordinator of International Librarians Network, Australia.

Best regards,

CPDWL programme at the WLIC 2013, Singapore

CPDWL is happy to welcome you to the roundtable session Taking charge of your career in Singapore during the IFLA Conference.

We`ll start with the lecture Competence wheel: strategic, personal, communicative and professional technical skills, presented by Catharina Isberg, Communication coordinator of CPDWL.

The tables will give attention to:

1. Intercultural competencies for the international floor.  How to behave and react with international counterparts?  Intercultural competence doesn`t mean to resolve differentess but to use it.  We will discuss different behaviours, gestures etc. Host: Ulrike Lang

2. What to do to be published, whom to contact.   Publishing can take many forms – for example blogging, writing book reviews or conference reports, and presenting conference papers. This table will showcase some IFLA options which increase the reach of your work – writing for IFLA and Emerald journals and books. Host: Eileen Breen

3. How to prepare your papers to be published. Publishing papers can advance your career: Learn strategies for getting your interesting results and important best practices published.  This table will cover how you identify the right publication, write for your audience, and present your content for publication. Host: Sandy Hirsh

4. Gap analysis (Self managed career).   As the self-managed career is replacing the traditional career, librarians need to take contol of their own destinies.  Learn tips and techniques for planning the career that you want. Host: Margaret Law

5. Personal skills and competencies. Personal skills are the foundation in leadership as well as in employeeship, where you lead yourself in your daily work. In order to understand other people, you need to understand yourself and your actions. Host: Catharina Isberg

6. How to connect: using social media. Social media – looking at strategies to use social media to continue your professional development or how to manage your own social media profile to enhance your career. Using different social media to network with others in our profession or with our clients. Host: Anne Lehto

7. Internationalizing your career.  Getting the international into your career: hear about strategies for developing cross-cultural competencies and multicultural awareness. Host: Susan Schnuer

8. Alternative career.  Librarians possess many transferrable skills that can be used outside of a traditional library. How do you identify them? What types of jobs are possible? How does one find and obtain these jobs?  Host: Monica Ertel

9. Jump starting career. Learn how to maximize your investment in your personal development. 10 essential education and career resources to help you strategize powerful moves. Join our discussion of a practical shortlist of resources to help you start making connections to continue moving forward. Host: Loida Garcia Febo

10. Professional ethics.  At the library workplace we are challenged by ethical dilemmas quite often. Main issues are free access to information/censorship, privacy, equitable services for everyone… How do you become aware that you are facing a dilemma? How do you treat ethical conflicts? How can professional ethics help you to solve an ethical conflict?  Host: Hermann Roesch


A report from the “Satellite Meeting in Tampere”, 2012

Cut from the CPDWL Newsletter (in the newsletter you’ll also find some pictures)

Juanita Jara de Súmar. Newsletter Editor

The Road to Information Literacy: Librarians as Facilitators of Learning is the title of the Satellite meeting convened jointly by the Continuing Professional Development and Workplace Learning and Information Literacy Sections and hosted by Tampere University Library, in Tampere, Finland, 8 – 10 August 2012 . The organizing committee was chaired by Susan Schnuer and Leena Toivonen.

Conveners, host and editorial team did a fantastic job,. The venue was excellent and the programme was rich, varied and very interesting. For the first time a CPDWL satellite meeting had it own website, where you can find the slide shows that accompanied the presentations.

A mentoring programme for first time participants was offered for this event, The help of seven volunteers coordinated by Arne Gundersen and Zuza Wiorogorska was much appreciated by those who benefitted from it.

Also, as is customary in all CPDWL satellite meetings, the editors of the proceedings: Roisin Gwyer, Ruth Stubbings & Graham Walton delivered the volume containing the Elizabeth Stone Memorial Lecture and 22 selected papers. The proceeding have been published as IFLA Publications Series 157.

A total of 126 registrations were received. Participants came from all five continents, but mainly from Europe. And something they appreciated very much was the friendly atmosphere and the opportunities for networking.

The local committee organized a city and surroundings tour, various library tours, a reception at the Old City Hall, offered by the City of Tampere, and an excellent Conference dinner.

The Conference itself started with a Welcome address from Katja Kannonlahti, the University of Tampere Head of Communications. This was followed by the Elizabeth Stone Memorial Lecture, delivered by Kirsti Lonka from the University of Helsinki, on Engaging Learning Environments for the Future.

The second day started with the Keynote Lecture Facilitating Learning Through Guided Inquiry, delivered by Carol Kuhlthau, Professor Emerita Rutgers University

The rest of the program of the two days was divided in seven sessions, with a total of 37 papers and 6 workshops. There were also 6 poster sessions on display.

The organizers expressed their gratitude to the Tampere University staff who helped in multiple ways and the librarians who conducted visits and library tours, and to Standing Committee members who volunteered to be moderators of the sessions.

And, of course, the coffee breaks and lunches were wonderful!

Additional photos can be seen at