ALCTS sponsors representatives to seven sections of the International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions annual meeting (named World Library and Information Conference beginning in 2003): Acquisition and Collection Development, Bibliography, Cataloguing, Classification and Indexing, Knowledge Management, Preservation and Conservation, and Serial Publications. We regret that reporters were not available to to cover the Serials Section activities.
Acquisition and Collection Development /
Classification and Indexing /
Knowledge Management /
Preservation and Conservation / Serial Publications
Acquisition and Collection Development SectionLynn Sipe, University of Southern California
The Acquisition and Collection Development Section maintained its usual high level of activity, albeit within the context of a more truncated meeting schedule, during IFLA’s 71st World Library and Information Conference, held in Oslo, August 14-18, 2005. The city of Oslo was a wonderful site for the conference, providing an unusually broad range of historic, cultural and scenic amenities to tempt the conference attendee when not at one of the conference sessions. A thriving and diverse local restaurant scene and a superb public transportation system further enhanced the attractions of the host city.
Approximately 185 people were present for the Section’s well received “Open Program,” held on Tuesday, August 16, 2005. The theme was “Electronic Resources—Different Approaches for End-Users.” Speakers from Canada, Norway, Germany and the United States discussed how to improve access to electronic resources in developing countries; collecting and providing access to digital documents in the National Library of Norway; national licenses and end-user access; and the story of North Carolina Live. Joe Hewitt, formerly University Librarian at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, presented the last paper.
Following standard practice, the Standing Committee of the Acquisition and Collection Development Section held two lengthy meetings during the conference. At the first of these meetings, I was re-elected to a second two-year term as Secretary/Information Officer of the Section. The two meetings addressed a broad range of issues. A significant amount of time was devoted to following up on the Committee’s discussions on the Section’s Strategic Plan from its mid-term meeting in Bologna in February. Considerable progress was made, but the text must be finalized before the November deadline for submission. Work of the Section is not limited to what transpires during the annual conference!
Preliminary discussions were held in the Committee, and subsequently elaborated upon in planning meetings outside of the Committee, for a joint open program with the Continuing Resources (Serials) Section at the Seoul Conference (2006) and for a satellite meeting immediately prior to the Seoul conference. “Evolving Business Models for Hybrid Collections” is the theme of the joint open program in Seoul. The Acquisition and Collection Development, Document Delivery and Reference Sections are jointly sponsoring the satellite meeting. The theme of that meeting will be “Resource Sharing, Reference and Collection Development in the Digital Age—A Practical Approach.” The Committee also discussed possible topics for the open program at the Durban Conference (2007). Nothing was finalized at the meeting.
Committee members agreed to initiate work on developing an electronic resources manual, with an emphasis on its utility for less developed countries. A draft of possible content was distributed and discussed. Several members of the committee were drafted or volunteered to work on individual sections of the manual, with an initial deadline of February 15, 2006 for submission of the first drafts. It was agreed that a review of the drafts would be on Committee’s agenda for a probable mid-term meeting which is likely to be held in Paris in mid-March 2006.
Bibliography SectionD. Whitney Coe, Princeton University (retired)
Three thousand and ninety-six participants arrived in one of the world's most expensive cities to embark upon a Viking "Voyage of Discovery—Libraries," theme of the 71st IFLA General Conference and Council, August 14–18, 2005. The impressive opening ceremony was marked by the attendance of His Majesty King Harald V of Norway. Everyone was taken by surprise when he took his seat, not on the main-floor level, but up in the gallery where most attendees were seated.
The first business meeting of the Bibliography Section on Saturday morning was highlighted by the election of new officers: Unni Knutsen, Chair (Norway) and Beacher Wiggins, Secretary (United States). Following lunch, members of the Working Group on Guidelines for National Bibliographies continued discussion of the development of guidelines (general and electronic specific) and their eventual publication. The Section reviewed what had already been covered, next steps, and set deadlines for 2007.
The Division of Bibliographic Control and its Sections programs took place on Wednesday, August 17, 2005. The final presentation of the Division's program was a detailed examination of "Bibliographic Control in the Nordic Countries" by Unni Knutsen (Oslo University College). This paper was both a fitting conclusion to the Division's program and a solid introduction to the Bibliography Section's program on "National Bibliography: New Tools, New Materials." Knutsen's paper is available at www.ifla.org/IV/ifla71/papers/166e-Knutsen.pdf.
In keeping with the regional emphasis of the conference, the Working Group on Guidelines for National Bibliographies conducted a survey on the inclusion of electronic resources in the national bibliographies of Europe. In his presentation, Beacher Wiggins (Library of Congress) provided a summary of this survey. This summary is available at www.ifla.org/IV/ifla71/papers/177e-Wiggins.pdf. The complete survey will be made available shortly on the Section's website.
In his paper, "Recommendations for Urgently Needed Improvement of OPAC and the Role of the National Bibliographic Agency in Achieving It,” John D. Byrum, Jr. (Library of Congress) addressed the need for current OPACs to expand beyond traditional methods to meet the rising expectations of current and future users who are more familiar with searching and using Web resources than traditional catalogs. He described a variety of tools currently used by the Library of Congress to enhance their bibliographic records to retain the support of satisfied users. Mr. Byrum's presentation is available at www.ifla.org/IV/ifla71/papers/124e-Byrum.pdf.
Christian Lupovici (Bibliothèque Nationale de France), in his paper, "Web Crawling: the Bibliothèque Nationale de France Experience," covered the techniques used by the Bibliothèque Nationale to effectively search the Web for documents appropriate for inclusion in their national bibliography. Mr. Lupovici's paper is available at http://www.ifla.org/IV/ifla71/papers/074e-Lupovici.pdf
Concluding the program, Maja Zumer (University of Ljubjana, Slovenia) summarized the activities of the Working Group in her presentation, "Guidelines for (Electronic) National Bibliographies: Work in Progress." Dr. Zumer's presentation is available at www.ifla.org/IV/ifla71/papers/073e-Zumer.pdf.
The second business meeting of the Section was held on Friday, August 19, 2005. Topics discussed included programs for both Seoul and Durban that will continue the regional theme of national bibliographies of the regions and emphasize the unique challenges and issues these national bibliographic agencies have faced; the Section review; the Strategic Plan for 2006–2007 and the next steps for the Working Group, which will meet again early next February in Vilnius, Lithuania.
Now is the time to start bringing out the kimchi to prepare for the Seoul experience in August 2006! It will be a conference for which, as USIA/ALA Library Fellow at Seoul National University Library in 1993/1994, I will be happy to answer any questions and urge everyone to attend.
Cataloguing SectionWilliam Garrison, Syracuse University,
John Hostage, Harvard Law School Library, and
Glenn Patton, OCLC, Inc.
The World Library and Information Congress and 71st General Conference and Council of IFLA was held August 14–18, 2005, in Oslo, Norway. The meeting, held under the patronage of His Majesty King Harald V of Norway, attracted some 3,200 participants from 113 countries. This conference marked the end of the term for President Kay Raseroka of Botswana and the beginning of the presidential term of Alex Byrne of Australia, with Claudia Lux of Germany beginning her term as President-Elect. This conference is also the first for Peter Lor, IFLA’s new Secretary General. Gunilla Jonsson (Royal Library of Sweden) chaired activities of the Cataloguing Section with Judy Kuhagen (Library of Congress) serving as secretary of the section. Gunilla’s term as chair ended with this meeting. Section members elected Judy Kuhagen to serve as chair and Ben Gu (National Library of China) as secretary. Patrick Le Boeuf (Bibliothèque National de France) was re-elected as the Section’s Information Officer. Also during this meeting, Glenn Patton completed his term as an ALA representative.
Section members heard a special presentation about the newly developed Cataloging Cultural Objects: A guide to Describing Cultural Works and Their Images (CCO) by Murtha Baca of the Getty Research Institute. The CCO Project is interested in working with the IFLA Cataloguing Section and its various working groups to develop compatible standards across the archival, library and museum communities.
Renate Gömpel of Die Deutsche Bibliothek (DDB) provided a report on activities of the IFLA-CDNL Alliance for Bibliographic Standards (ICABS). The Alliance (based on an agreement between the IFLA Governing Board and 6 national libraries: the British Library, Die Deutsche Bibliothek, the Library of Congress, the National Library of Australia, the National Library of Portugal, and the Royal Library of the Netherlands) provides funds and general support for the major efforts of the Universal Bibliographic Control International MARC Programme with the DDB providing a part-time secretariat. These activities include support for promotion of FRBR and FRAR, for the continued development of the ISBDs and UNIMARC, as well as digital preservation.
It was also announced that the UNIMARC Core Activity, with the sponsorship of the National Library of Portugal and the Gulbenkian Foundation, is planning for an international conference, “UNIMARC & Friends: Charting the New Landscape of Library Standards,” to be held in Lisbon, March 20–21, 2006.
This year, the Section joined its sister section, the Classification & Indexing Section, in sponsoring an open program titled “Cataloguing and Subject Tools for Global Access: International Partnerships.” Twelve speakers discussed authority work from different aspects, principles as well as practices, and covered subject indexing, personal and corporate names and geographical names, with several of the presentations having a multilingual angle. The presentations are available on IFLANET at www.ifla.org/IV/ifla71/Programme.htm#139.
Members of the Cataloguing Section heard reports from the following working groups:
- Patrick Le Boeuf of the Bibliothèque National de France has chaired the FRBR Review Group for the past four years. At this meeting, Pat Riva of McGill University was elected as the new chair. Many of the group’s activities this year were focused on the FRBR Workshop held in Dublin, Ohio, on May 2–4, 2005, with generous funding support from the British Library. One of the outcomes of the workshop is a survey of local system vendors. Several review group members were also involved in a FRBR-related satellite meeting held in Järvenpää, Finland, just before the Oslo conference.
- The Working Group on FRBR/CRM Dialog, which is attempting to harmonize the FRBR model with the CIDOC Conceptual Reference Model, continued its work on an object-oriented definition of the FRBR model during two meetings this year. The Review Group continues its evaluation of a number of proposed changes to the FRBR model, including new user tasks, entities, attributes and relationships. The group has also established a new Working Group on Aggregates, to be chaired by Ed O’Neill of OCLC. This group will focus on a number of kinds of aggregated works (collections, anthologies, augmentations, series and multi-part monographs, serials and integrating resources) and difficulties identified with applying the FRBR model to them.
- The Working Group on the Use of Metadata Schemes, led by Lynne Howarth of the Faculty of Information Studies at the University of Toronto, has completed its work. A document titled Guidance on the Nature, Implementation, and Evaluation of Metadata Schemas in Libraries has been presented to the Section for review and approval. An email vote will be taken following the conference.
- A joint Working Group on OPAC Displays (Cataloguing Section with additional members from the Classification and Indexing Section and the Bibliography Section, also led by Lynne Howarth) has completed its work and the resulting document has been published by K. G. Saur as volume 27 of the IFLA Series on Bibliographic Control.
- The ISBD Review Group (led by John Byrum, Library of Congress) continues to be very active. The group’s major task continues to be the preparation of a consolidated ISBD. Significant work has been completed in the harmonization of existing texts. In conjunction with this effort, a Material Designations Study Group continues to work on issues related to GMDs and SMDs. The Series Study Group, which has been charged with resolving inconsistencies in Area 6 of the various ISBDs, has completed its work, which will be folded into the consolidated text. Work also continued on a revisions to the ISBD(A), with a final draft expected by the end of the calendar year.
- The Section’s Working Group on a Multilingual Dictionary for Cataloguing Terms and Concepts (led by Monika Münnich of the University of Heidelberg) has not made much progress this year due to illness. Working group members remain optimistic that more progress will be made in the coming year.
The Section’s long-awaited publication of Part 1 of Anonymous Classics, covering European texts, was completed this year with the availability of the document at www.ifla.org/VII/s13/pubs/AnonymousClassics2004.pdf. A second part, covering uniform titles for African epics, will be made available for review soon.
The IFLA Meeting of Experts on an International Cataloguing Code (IME-ICC) Planning Committee is finalizing plans for a meeting of cataloging experts from the Middle East to be held in Cairo, Egypt, in December 2005. The National Library of Korea will host a meeting of rule makers from the Far East just prior to the 2006 IFLA conference in Seoul. Plans are also progressing for the final meeting of the series, a meeting of African experts to be held just prior to the 2007 IFLA conference in South Africa.
The Section continues to be involved with the Working Group on Functional Requirements of Authority Numbering and Records (FRANAR), an effort of the IFLA Division of Bibliographic Control, chaired by Glenn Patton (OCLC, and ALA representative). The Working Group’s draft Functional Requirements for Authority Records is currently available for worldwide review on the IFLA Web site at www.ifla.org/VII/d4/wg-franar.htm with comments due by October 28, 2005.
A new Working Group on Functional Requirements of Subject Authority Records, co-chaired by Marcia Zeng of Kent State University and Maja Ã¯Â¿Â½umer of the University of Ljubljana, has begun work on a fuller exploration and extension of subject aspects of the FRBR model.
The Cataloguing Section was very pleased to receive an invitation from the American Library Association’s Association for Library Collections and Technical Services (ALCTS) to establish a liaison relationship with the ALCTS Committee on Cataloging: Description and Access, and unanimously elected John Hostage to that role.
The Section also began work on a new Strategic Plan for 2005–2007, which will be completed in the next two months and posted with other Division and Section strategic plans on IFLANET, and on program planning for the forthcoming meetings in Seoul and Durban.
Other activities of the Section, as well as other news in the world of cataloging, are described in the Section’s newsletter, SCATNews, to be found on IFLANET at www.ifla.org/VII/s13/index.htm#Newsletters.
Future IFLA meetings are now planned as follows:
- 2006—Seoul, Korea (August 22–28). The theme of the conference is “Libraries: Dynamic Engines for the Knowledge and Information Society.
- 2007—Durban, South Africa (August 19–23) The theme of the conference is “Libraries for the Future: Progress, Development & Partnerships”
- 2008—Quebec (dates to be announced)
- 2009—Location to be announced
Classification and Indexing SectionDavid Miller, Curry College and
Edward T. O’Neill, OCLC Office of Research
The 71st IFLA General Conference and Council, now known as the World Library and Information Congress, met in Oslo, Norway, from August 14–18, 2005. The Congress attracted nearly 3100 participants, who enjoyed the programs as well as ceremonies and vendor exhibits, but also library and sightseeing tours, multiple receptions and a particularly memorable evening at the open-air Museum of Norwegian Culture. The Classification and Indexing Section collaborated with the Cataloguing Section to present a stimulating and varied program during the Congress. In addition, several Section Working Groups continued their activities.
The two Sections presented a program titled “Cataloguing and Subject Tools for Global Access: International Partnerships.” Spanning boundaries was the order of the day, as the papers dealt with activities that break out of the silos of nationality, language, and script. Marie Balíková (National Library of the Czech Republic) presented “Multilingual Subject Access to Catalogues of National Libraries (MSAC): Czech Republic’s Collaborations with Slovakia, Slovenia, Croatia, Macedonia, Lithuania and Latvia.” Patrice Landry (Swiss National Library) and Magda Heiner-Freling (Die Deutsche Bibliothek) discussed “The Use of the Dewey Decimal Classification for the Organization of National Bibliographies: the German Language Approach Proposed by Austria, Germany and Switzerland.” Françoise Bourdon (Bibliothèque Nationale de France) and Jo-Anne Bélair (Bibliothèque de l’Université Laval, Québec) combined forces for “Le Répertoire de Vedettes-Matière [RVM] and RAMEAU: Two Indexing Languages in French: A Necessary Luxury. ” Cataloguing Section presentations continued the theme. Olga Lavrenova (Russian State Library) discussed the “National Authority File of Russian Geographic Names,” and Natalya Kulygina (Russian State Library) presented “Authority Control in a Multilanguage Catalogue: Russian Experience,” a project which includes integration of multiple scripts as well. The program opened with a presentation by Glenn Patton (OCLC) on the recently issued draft of “FRAR [Functional Requirements for Authority Records]: Extending FRBR concepts to authority data.” A concluding panel featured Marcia Zeng (School of Library and Information Science, Kent State University), Mirna Willer (National and University Library, Zagreb) and Per-Gunnar Ottosson (National Archives, Stockholm), discussing issues of authority file sharing from several different perspectives, crossing the threshold between library and archival practices.
The Section’s Working Group on Guidelines for Multilingual Thesauri (Gerhard Riesthuis, chair) has placed the final draft of the Guidelines on IFLANET for review and discussion. The Working Group on a Virtual Clearinghouse of Subject Access Tools (David Miller, chair) met during the conference and redefined its focus, which will initially be on surveying resources used by national libraries (or their equivalents) or national-level bibliographic services worldwide. The Working Group on Guidelines for Subject Access by National Bibliographic Agencies (Patrice Landry, chair), also renamed and refocused, developed a two-year action plan. The newest Working Group, on Functional Requirements for Subject Authority Records (FRSAR), met for the first time during the conference. Its task is to extend the work of FRBR and FRAR to the complex realm of subject authorities.
Information about the Section can be found on IFLANET, at
Knowledge Management SectionLois Mai Chan, University of Kentucky
The Knowledge Management Section of IFLA began as a discussion group in 2001. The overwhelming response and interest resulted in the establishment of the Section in 2003. The Section affirms the definition of knowledge management as “the process of creating, storing, sharing, and re-using organizational knowledge to enable an organization to achieve its goals and objectives. KM extends the concept of ‘knowledge’ beyond existing concepts such as ‘memory,’ ‘storage,’ and ‘information.’ The term covers such areas as tacit knowledge (expertise), implicit knowledge, and procedural knowledge.” (KM Section brochure)
The goal of the KM Section is to support the implementation of Knowledge Management culture in the libraries and the information environment. The Section will provide an international platform for professional communication and for an understanding of the significance of KM for librarians and their institutions that employ them. The Section aims to follow the development of KM and promote its practical implementation within the IFLA community. Since KM encompasses many dimensions of the organization, the Section’s activities are intended to be integrated and linked to other relevant Sections and Divisions. Meeting the demand of librarians to maintain their competencies and skills in an ever-changing working environment, the Section seeks to provide theoretical and practical knowledge in focused areas of KM (such as interactive communication in various types of information settings or the use of modern IT for the exchange of knowledge and experience in an organizational context).
The 2005 KM Section program, “Knowledge Management: The Broader Issues and Opportunities,” took place on Monday, August 15, 2005. Five papers were presented. Full-text versions of the papers are available at: www.ifla.org/IV/ifla71/Programme.htm.
During the 2005 Conference, the following Section officers were elected:
The Potential for Librarians in the KM ArenaAngela Abell (TFPL, London, UK)
Abell discusses the rich opportunities for librarians in knowledge management in the “community of economy.” Areas for potential contributions by librarians include information architecture, organization of information, standardization, and IT systems.
Abstract not available.
The Critical Role of Librarian/Information Officer as Boundary Spanner across Cultures: Humans as Essential Components in Global Digital LibrariesRobert M. Mason (Management Information Systems, College of Business Florida State University, Tallahassee, FL 32306-1110 USA)
AbstractAs libraries become increasingly based on digital storage and access technologies, knowledge management approaches seem particularly useful. Most knowledge management systems emphasize the role of information and communications technologies, and the question arises about the role of librarians in these systems. This paper posits that if globally digital libraries are to realize their potential for providing access to the widest feasible range of knowledge, librarians and information officers need to fulfill a challenging and critical role as boundary spanners across cultures. This paper is based on evidence that knowledge is culturally derived, acquired, and applied, and that learning—the acquisition of new knowledge—is enabled by skills that are culturally dependent. This aspect of knowledge suggests that the tacit dimension of knowledge and learning may require humans to aid in spanning the boundaries across different knowledge domains and different cultures.
Knowledge Sharing Practices in Asian Institutions: A Multi-Cultural Perspective from SingaporeAbdus Sattar Chaudhry (Division of Information Studies, School of Communication and Information, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore)
AbstractResearch studies on knowledge sharing carried out in Singapore during the last five years are reviewed and special features of knowledge sharing practices in Asian institutions are discussed. Cultural traditions had positive and negative effects on knowledge sharing practices in the multiethnic and diverse society of Singapore. An understanding of these factors is important for information institutions and education providers to support knowledge management initiatives.
KM Moves Beyond the Organization: The Opportunity for LibrariansMichael E. D. Koenig (Palmer School of Library and Information Science, College of Information and Computer Science, Long Island University, Brookville, New York)
AbstractKM is no ordinary management fad—first, it has legs, it is not fading away, and second it clearly is relevant to and overlaps greatly with librarianship. Despite the obvious overlap with librarianship, our field has done comparatively poorly on capitalizing on that overlap. The KM movement has gone through a number of stages, and it is now moving into a stage of recognizing the importance of and incorporating information and knowledge external to the parent organization. Such information and knowledge has always been the province of the librarian, and this development presents obvious and important opportunities for the field of librarianship, particularly in the area of the organization’s KM system design.
KM Education in LIS ProgramsBy Sajjad Ur Rehman (Library and Information Science, Kuwait University) and Abdus Sattar Chaudhry (Division of Information Studies, School of Communication and Information, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore)
AbstractThis paper investigates the perceptions of the heads of 12 LIS schools about KM education. The heads from North America, Europe and Pacific region who consented to participate in this study had either been offering KM courses or had an apparent interest in these programs. Data about perceptions were gathered around the nature of their KM coursework, KM positions their graduates might target, interdisciplinary partnerships, strategic partnerships with industry, and practical difficulties in the introduction of KM courses. They were asked to pinpoint difficulties in the areas of faculty availability, student enrollment, resource availability, creation of partnerships, working with professional associations, and interactions with industry. There existed a strong interest in offering KM courses, cultivating collaborations with business and computing schools, and developing strategic partnerships with industry. These heads identified those problems that hindered their progress.
The IFLA KM Section and Yeditepe University of Istanbul, Turkey are co-sponsoring a conference with the theme “Knowledge Management in the e-World: New Models for Scholar Communication,” scheduled for October 13–15, 2005 in Istanbul, Turkey. This conference will serve as the model of the Section’s “Road Show” to be presented when and where appropriate in the future.
- Chair: Irene Wormell (Sweden)
- Secretary: Judith J. Field (United States)
- Webmaster: Theo J.D. Bothma (South Africa)
- Information Officer: Sarah Towle (Australia)
Preservation and Conservation SectionNancy E. Gwinn, Smithsonian Institution Libraries
Warm, balmy weather greeted participants in the IFLA annual meeting in Oslo, Norway in August 2005. For this writer, it was unexpectedly hot, even north of the Arctic Circle. It was a blessing, however, as the weather neither hindered the many preconferences held in other parts of the country, nor the movement among the many Oslo hotels and conference sites.
I wore many hats at this conference, as in the past, which included serving on the Governing Board, as Vice Chair of the Professional Committee (which is in charge of all IFLA programs), as Chair of the Standing Committee on Preservation and Conservation (SC-PAC) and of Division VI: Management & Technology, as Chair of the IFLA Publications Committee, and as a member of the Advisory Committee to the IFLA Preservation and Conservation (IFLA PAC) Core Activity. I was re-elected to all of these positions. In addition, August 9–11, I attended a preconference cosponsored by the IFLA SC-PAC, called the “Arctic Circle Conservation Colloquium,” held in Mo I Rana, a city just south of the Arctic Circle.
Preconference: “Arctic Circle Conservation Colloquium”The site selected for the preconference, Mo I Rana, is the remote storage site for the National Library of Norway, which is in Oslo. The “Rana” staff are constructing buildings inside a mountain for long-term storage of their legal deposit collection, which includes everything published in Norway, as well as the radio and television programs from the Norwegian broadcasting company. The book collection does not circulate. While the buildings are stable in temperature, there are problems with humidity inside the mountain. The standard is to maintain a temperature of 8° C and 35% RH. This is also the physical location of the National Library’s digital repository. A separate building houses vaults for nitrate film.
The automated storage and retrieval system located in a different building houses the circulating collections. In an enormously tall room (60 meter high), an automated robot moves through the aisles and picks and returns boxes of books to the delivery staff in another room.
Conference attendees were impressed with the climate control and monitoring mechanisms, and particularly with the work to digitize and preserve radio and television broadcasts and other sound and audiovisual media. Staff showed attendees the impressive room housing the National Library’s digital repository, and reported that the repository already holds 60–70 terabytes of information. Three or four migrations of data have been successful. Migration takes “[a] terribly long time,” in their experience (nine days for one terabyte). Current thinking is that migration may be possible only every third year. Staff noted that it is a challenge to avoid human errors during such long and complicated processes.
Photos (L to R)
1. Map showing the two locations of the National Library of Norway, Oslo and Mo I Rana.
2. Filled boxes ready to store.
3.The automated storage and retrieval system in “Rana”
Standing Committee on Preservation and ConservationAt the World Congress, the Standing Committee on Preservation and Conservation (SC-PAC) sponsored a program “Housing for Eternity, Sustainable Solutions and Mistakes to Avoid: The Role of Library Buildings in Preservation.” Six speakers from France, Norway, Russia, China, and Sweden recounted their experiences with controlling building environments to meet preservation needs or to use cost-effective new technologies. Of particular interest was the Russian State Library’s account of retrofitting and upgrading a building with collections maintained in place. The Almaden Library in Visby, Sweden, utilizes seawater as a source of heat via a water-to-seawater heat exchanger that both heats and cools the building, making further air conditioning and refrigerating unnecessary in the Swedish climate. A speaker from Cowi A/S in Trondheim, Norway, described growing interest in the fire prevention system known as hypoxic air venting, in which a collection is stored in an environment in which oxygen is reduced to the point that combustion is not possible, yet the air is safe to breathe. All papers are available on the IFLANET Web site.
Preservation chief Arthur Tennoe from the National Library of Norway also treated Standing Committee members to a tour of the new National Library Building and its conservation laboratory.
The Standing Committee had a full agenda, including a discussion with Sayeed Choudary from Johns Hopkins, concerning the use of robotics to facilitate selection for preservation at remote storage/shelving facilities. Other topics included planning for the 2007 IFLA Conference in Seoul and the 2008 conference in Durban, South Africa. Committee members are preparing an open session in Seoul to highlight education for preservation, including a “swap” of preservation related bookmarks. A preconference at the National Diet Library in Japan will feature preservation of Asian materials. In Durban, a preconference will feature methods of handling pests, mold and fungi. The Committee also reviewed a preliminary draft of the PAC Section Review, which is due this fall, and revised and updated the Strategic Plan for 2006–2007. Steps were taken to begin the process of transforming the section’s publication, “First Do No Harm: A Register of Standards, Codes of Practice, Guidelines, Recommendations and Similar Works,” now available on IFLANET as a PDF document, to a database to allow for great searching capability and timely updating. The Deutsche Bucherei Leipzig has offered to take on this work.
Other board and committee obligations prevented me from attending other preservation-related programs.