IRRT | Call for IRRT Papers and Projects Session Proposals

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The American Library Association's International Relations Round Table Papers and Projects Committee invites proposals for presentations to be made at the next ALA Annual Conference in Washington, D.C., USA. Presentations will be delivered at the International Papers Session scheduled in June 2019. The International Papers and Projects Program provides librarians with an opportunity to exchange information about library services, collections and projects throughout the world. The program also serves to stimulate the interest of U.S. librarians in international library matters. We invite presentation proposals based on the International Papers and Projects 2019 theme: Preparing for a Changing World: How Libraries Facilitate the Acquisition of New Skill Sets in Communities.

Societies are constantly changing whether because of demography, socio-political climates or even new technology disruptions which require new ways of thinking and learning. All of these have an impact on communities, how they function, interact as well as a bearing on who gets ahead and who falls behind. Libraries have long sought to level the playing field, promoting equity and inclusivity while trying to keep up with change. With an ever-widening scope, libraries increasingly play the role of a facilitator, bringing together different stakeholders in the community to strengthen and improve the lives of those it serves.

Do you have a story to share about how your library, on its own or in collaboration with community organizations, is encouraging the acquisition of new skill sets such as health literacy for an aging population, new media initiatives and strategies that help families navigate a changing media landscape, critical evaluation skills to help members assess the information they consume online and other life skills like communication and negotiation that have grown in importance in a divisive world?

Possible topics relating to this theme may include-but are not limited to:

  • New kinds of literacies that you have implemented in their libraries and how it has impacted the communities you serve
  • How your library has worked with stakeholders to expand what you are able to offer in terms of either imparting new skills or provision of information
  • Creative use of social media and/or technologies to reach out to the wider population
  • How your projects have been marketed to ensure that initiatives are well-publicized
  • Use of data to make informed decisions on what is needed
  • Working with other libraries across borders to maximize resources and/or to augment developmental needs

We encourage submissions that reflect the diverse way these developments have affected the public sector, the academic environment, special libraries or other types of information organizations. International library schools may also share about how they are preparing their students to meet such needs.

Proposals, presentations, and papers must be written and delivered in English, which is the working language of the program.
Proposals should include:
1. Title of the presentation
2. Name, title, institutional affiliation, and full contact information (including a valid e-mail address) for each presenter
3. Abstract (300-500 words)
4. A short biographical profile of each presenter

Proposals should be submitted electronically (as a single Microsoft Word or PDF attachment) to the International Relations Office via email at with a copy to


Deadline for submitting proposals is January 18, 2019.


Up to four proposals will be selected to present at the ALA Annual Meeting in June 2019. Notification of acceptance will be emailed by February 18, 2019.


The International Papers and Projects Program is 1.5 hours total. Presentations should run about 20 minutes each, followed by a question-and-answer session. Presenters are encouraged to prepare a dynamic and interactive presentation, incorporating visual prompts, technologies, games, questions for the audience, etc. PowerPoints are common, but speakers who want to read a paper or refer to it are welcome to do so.

We would like to invite you to view previous presentation titles listed on IRRT's International Papers and Projects Session Committee website.