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Report for the ALA conference

I’m attending the annual ALA conference in Anaheim, where we’re enjoying welcome
relief from Washington’s hot, muggy air.  ALA is so big that every attendee is
going to have a highly individual view.  I only arrived yesterday (Friday) afternoon, but
already I have several meetings under my belt.

My focus this time is
largely on international activities, given my current role as a member of the
Governing Board of the International Federation of Library Associations and
Institutions and as chair of it’s Professional Committee.  So yesterday I sat in
on the meeting of ALA’s International Relations Committee, where there were
numerous reports on how the association is reaching out to colleagues around the

I joined Sjoerd Koopman, IFLA’s Coordinator of Professional
Activities, in reporting on what IFLA was doing in many areas of the developing
world to advocate for libraries and freedom of information.

IFLA has
just published a world report on the status of intellectual freedom in over 100
countries.  IFLA is also helping to rebuild the library on the small island of
Yap; it’s library was completely destroyed in the
tsunami that caused a
disaster in Southeast Asia several years ago.  Yap was overlooked in the rush to
help the more publicized problems in the larger countries.  You can get more
information at IFLANET, the association’s website.

Right now (Saturday)
I’m sitting
in on a program about how to renovate library spaces to meet new needs in the
future.  More on this and the exhibits later.

– Nancy

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