Category Archives: Professional Organizations

Program: Panelists needed for International Program

2.23.16 –  Speakers Needed for ALA IRRT Program
Sarah P’s comments: If anyone is planning on attending ALA’s annual conference in June (Orlando, FL), has international experience and would like to be a panelist please let me know!  This was a program they began last year and proved very popular so they would like to repeat it this year.  So far, Ray Pun and I are going to be sharing however the more the better…
IRRT Connections sponsors a now-annual session called “leaning international: lessons from the field.”
The event description from last year, which may well be reusable this year,  said,” For MLS students through seasoned information professionals interested in working internationally, this annual program hosted by IRRT’s International Connections Committee features American librarians discussing their own unique international experiences.  Discussions are split between prepared topics and audience Q&A time.  These interactive sessions have included such diverse topics as leveraging networks to find work abroad, pre-departure language and etiquette training, adapting to regional librarianship as well as cultural standards, the practicalities of life overseas, and more! This annual program hosted by IRRT’s International Connections Committee features American librarians speaking about their own unique international experiences. 
Past speakers include: Rebecca L. Miller, Senior Research Officer at Afghanistan Research and Evaluation Unit; Catherine Shreve, Librarian for Public Policy & Political Science, Perkins Library, Duke University; Elly Shodell, Oral Historian Director of Local History Center, Port Washington Public Library, Ray Pun, ALA Emerging Leader 2014, Reference and Research Services Librarian, New York University Shanghai Library, Jim Agee, University Librarian, American University of Phnom Penh in Cambodia.
If interested please contact me via this blog and/or contact:

Ms. Jennifer T. Nardine, Assistant Professor
Learning Liaison Librarian for Performing Arts, Foreign Languages, English, and Religion & Culture
University Libraries, Virginia Tech, 560 Drillfield Dr, Blacksburg, VA  24061


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Volunteer: Join LWB in Guatemala

2.8.16 – Volunteer with Librarians Without Borders in Guatemala
Sarah P’s comments:  LWB is an American-based organization which has existed since 2005.  Their goal is ‘to build sustainable libraries and support their custodians and advocates — librarians’ and every year they organize a volunteer trip.
Service Trip Description 
Every Spring since 2010 LWB travels to the Miguel Angel Asturias Academy in Quetzaltenango, Guatemala to execute our remote work on the ground, to discuss emerging needs with our partners, and to re-connect with the students and school staff. We invite you to join us and work alongside us this year from April 22 to May 2, 2016.
This year’s work at the Academy will include ongoing collection management activities (cataloguing, processing, and organizing materials) and information literacy/outreach programming for students and teachers. LWB works with Asturias to also provide opportunities for trip participants to engage in activities that will help nurture a comprehensive understanding of libraries, education and culture in Guatemala. Typically trip participants are also given the opportunity to help finalize the last weekend activity (for example, visit scenic Lake Atitlán or trek to one of Guatemala’s volcanic peaks).
Primary Projects

  • Continued support of ILS implementation and lending system at the Asturias Academy through collection management support.
  • Information literacy and outreach programming targeting all students and levels through multi-day library events.
  • Professional development workshops for teachers supporting library integration into the curriculum.

Housing and Food
While in Quetzaltenango (Xela), participants will stay and eat most of their meals at the COFA Catholic Retreat Centre. On the weekends meals are eaten with a local family or at local restaurants. Vegetarian options will be available.
All trip volunteers are expected to:

  • Attend online meetings (3-4) to discuss projects and receive training on the Asturias Library and the local community context. These meetings are mandatory for all volunteers.
  • Join and contribute to a working team before the trip.
  • Participate in pre-and post-trip assessments (e.g. evaluation surveys).

Program Fees
The program fee is $1500 CAD* (= ~$1080 USD) for 11 days. This total covers lodging, food, transportation and entrance to all activities within Guatemala, as well as a fundraising fee to support LWB’s Guatemalan programs. Trip participants are responsible for paying their own airfare to and from Guatemala.
There is a $500 CAD non-refundable deposit due by all accepted applicants by March 3. The remainder of the fees ($1000 CAD) can be paid at the same time or by March 10*.
In addition, all trip participants are expected to bring extra spending money for additional purchases such as souvenirs and snacks, as well as occasional meals in Guatemala ($50-100 is adequate).
Important Dates

  • Guatemala Information Meeting (online) – February 9
  • Application Deadline – February 23
  • Successful applicants selected and notified – February 29
  • $500 CAD* non-refundable deposit due – March 3
  • $1000 CAD* (remainder of program fees) – March 10

*Note: The $1500 CAD may be revised to a new final figure if a significant change in exchange rate occurs. This information would be published by March 3.
How to apply: Submit a completed Volunteer Application to by February 23. Thank you!

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Volunteer: IFLA International Leaders Programme

2.7.16 –
The International Leaders Programme is a two-year Programme designed to increase the cohort of leaders who can effectively represent the wider library sector in the international arena, and to develop leaders within IFLA. The Programme provides opportunities that IFLA is in the unique position to offer through our global role and reputation and our extensive and diverse framework of activities and expertise.
For full details about the programme, project descriptions, selection criteria and application form, please visit our IFLA International Leaders Programme webpage.
The Programme will bring participants together at the 2016, 2017 and 2018 IFLA World Library and Information Congresses (WLIC) as the main face-to-face forum. In this dynamic and interactive environment, participants will have direct access to international leaders, and undertake eight days [excluding travel time] of activities including: seminar and workshop sessions on issues with a global impact led by leaders in the sector and related fields; participation in specified business meetings; attendance at specified professional programme sessions; working within groups to prepare presentations or reports; liaison with Governing Board members; building support networks.
This experience will be reinforced throughout the Programme with attachments to IFLA professional units and working/advisory groups to contribute to projects of direct relevance to IFLA’s international agenda, Strategic Plan and Key Initiatives. Participants will learn through practice, and be mentored as they strengthen their skills and knowledge.
Through participating in the programme, you will:

  • Contribute to important issues impacting on the future of the library sector
  • Gain experience in working at the international level
  • Gain experience in working with organisations such as the World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO), UNESCO, the European Commission, the Internet Governance Forum
  • Gain experience in the development of policy and position statements
  • Develop your negotiating and intervention skills
  • Develop your capacity to advocate and set political agendas,
  • Build relationships and develop your networks internationally
  • Build skills to have a broader impact as an advocate in your own library community

The Programme is administered by the Action for Development through Libraries Programme (ALP) under the general direction of the IFLA Governing Board.
Applications open until 2 March 2016

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Volunteer: Join the International Librarian Network

1/18/16 – Join the International Librarian Network
Sarah P’s comments:  If you are looking for a way to begin to have an international connection here is an opportunity.  I was involved in their previous round and was paired with a Canadian librarian working in Qatar.  It was an interesting experience and I am probably going to do it again with the hope of being paired with someone working in a different region as I already know so much about the Middle East from my years of working there.
The ILN Motto: A meeting place for librarians from around the world.

Applications are now open: new round begins March 2016

Want to build your professional network and learn about librarianship around the world? Love the idea of professional travel but just don’t have the budget? The International Librarians Network (ILN) is for you. We are pleased to announce the next round of this popular program will commence in early March 2016.
The ILN peer mentoring program is a facilitated program aimed at helping librarians develop international networks. Participating in the ILN brings wider professional awareness, an international perspective to your work, new ideas, and increased professional confidence. We know this because many of our participants tell us – and we’ve had over 3500 librarians from 120+ countries take part so far.
Applications for the next round of partnerships will open in mid January and close at midnight on Sunday 14th February 2016. Numbers are limited, so apply early to ensure you don’t miss out.
The ILN is open to anyone working (or studying) in the library and information industry around the world. The program is free and the only requirements to participate are an internet connection, fluent English skills, an hour each week and a desire to build professional connections and learn from colleagues.
Get involved now! Find out more about the way the program works, or apply online.

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News: Opportunity to submit to ALA newsletter

 10/25/15 – Anyone out there working internationally or partnering with a library from another corner of the world?
December will be here soon and so will the next issue of the (American Library Association )IRRT’s newsletter International Leads.  We are looking for articles about the ways in which libraries work with each other across borders, provide international services, as well as any special projects or research you are doing.  Please send articles to by Monday, November 16, 2015.  We cannot guarantee that anything received after the deadline will make the December issue.
Your international work is vibrant and interesting.  We hope you will share it with us!
Gail Sacco and Karen Bordonaro, Co-editors

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Organizations: About IFLA

9/28/15 –  For anyone interested in International Librarianship, IFLA is the United Nations of libraries. IFLA, which stands for The International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions, is the ‘global voice’ of the library and information profession worldwide. The organization was founded in 1927, currently has over 1500 Members in approximately 150 countries around the world, and is headquartered at The Royal Library, the national library of the Netherlands, in The Hague.
To be honest, I have followed IFLA’s activities for many years but not participated partly because they were very ‘white-paper’ based and partly because of the expense of traveling to their conferences. However, in recent years I have noted they are becoming much more hands-on and I they are collaborating more with organizations such as ALA.  For example here is here is the latest news supplement.
FYI: They also maintain  a very useful international jobs list (LIBJOBS).

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News: Writing Opportunity

9/23/15 –  If you are doing anything Steve talks about, consider writing for this journal. It is not paid but it will up your ‘international profile’ and add to your CV.
Dear Colleagues,
As you are beginning new research projects, considering where to submit recently completed work, or editing a recent conference paper, please consider IFLA Journal.  The journal publishes peer reviewed articles on library and information services and the social, political and economic issues that impact access to information.  The journal publishes research, case studies and essays that reflect the broad spectrum of the profession.
All papers are peer reviewed, and we provide prompt feedback within 30 days of submission. IFLA Journal is widely disseminated to IFLA members around the world and available online on the SAGE Journals platform: hosted by HighWire.  Articles are available Open Access with no embargo on author archiving of the accepted version of your work in institutional repositories (RoMEO Green).
Although IFLA Journal no longer publishes IFLA Congress papers directly, the journal editorial committee is pleased to review papers presented at the IFLA Congress and other conferences.  All papers previously presented at a conference must be edited with at least a 30% change in content.  In addition, the paper must have a new title.
How to submit:
SAGE Track:
Visit the IFLA Journal website at
Steve Witt
Editor, IFLA Journal
PS: Follow IFLA Journal on Twitter to stay up to date on relevant research and issues in the field.

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Volunteer: Become a Peer Mentor with the International Librarians Network

7/13/15 –  Become a Peer Mentor with the International Librarians Network
Sarah P’s comments:  If you are looking for a way to begin to have an international connection here is an opportunity.  I was involved in their last round and was paired with a Canadian librarian working in Qatar.  It was an interesting experience and I am probably going to do it again with the hope of being paired with someone working in a different region as I already know so much about the Middle East from my years of working there.
The ILN Motto: A meeting place for librarians from around the world.
The International Librarians Network (ILN) peer mentoring program is a facilitated program aimed at helping librarians develop international networks. We believe that innovation and inspiration can cross borders, and that spreading our networks beyond our home countries can make us better at what we do.
Peer mentoring helps professionals develop partnerships and grow their network. The ILN uses a model where all participants are treated as equals who have valuable experiences to share. This means that partners are not placed into established mentor/protégé roles, but rather are encouraged to view their partnership as a way to learn from each other; all are mentors and all are protégés.
So why participate in a peer mentoring program?
Peer mentoring can allow you to:

  1. rediscover your own valuable skills by sharing your experiences with your partner
  2. learn a different perspective on your profession
  3. build your network
  4. reinvigorate the passion your career
  5. develop your professional skills

Interested? Applications are now open for the next round of the ILN – it’s an amazing opportunity to get your very own international peer-mentor (and be one too) and it’s completely free – but hurry they close at Midnight on Sunday 26th July 2015!
Find out more about our peer mentoring program and how it works on our website.

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News: International Leads Newsletter, June 2015

6/25/15  – ALA IRRT publishes International Leads, an increasingly relevant newsletter about international librarianship.

This month there is a list of all IRRT events for those attending ALA in San Francisco, an interesting article about efforts to preserve Middle East culture among an era of unprecedented destruction, and a call for submissions for anyone with any news to share about libraries worldwide:

(You must be a member of ALA/IRRT to submit)

Call for Submissions
Do you have news about…
  • International library activities?
  • People in international librarianship?
  • Upcoming international conferences?
Then why not submit to International Leads? Send your news
and stories to the co-editors:
Elizabeth Cramer,
Kevin Murphy,

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News: International Table & Programs @ ALA @ 2015 Conference

6/16/15 –
Sarah P’s comments: I have just been elected a committee member for ALA’s IRRT (American Library Association’s International Relations Round Table).  Unfortunately, I cannot attend this year however if you are attending IRRT is hosting some informative programs for anyone interested in international librarianship.
The list of IRC and IRRT meetings is now available. Please click on the title of each program. It will take you to the program’s page on the ALA scheduler. Please take a moment to review the list of speakers and descriptions only. Email me with any changes or corrections.
Meetings and programs:
Dear colleagues,

If you are attending the ALA Conference in San Francisco this June 2015.
Below is the link to the schedule of international programs. Please note that on Saturday, June 27 during the all committee meetings time, we will have a table for new librarians interested in international matters and wanting to network from 9:00-10:00 a.m. at the Westin St. Francis Hotel – Tower Salon A&B.
We are looking forward to see you there,
Loida Garcia-Febo
Chair, ALA International Relations Committee
ALA Councilor

IFLA Governing Board Member

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