85th Congress of World Library – Information in Athens, Greece

E-mail Print PDF

On August 25-30, 2019, the 85th World Library and Information Congress (WLIC) of  the International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions (IFLA) has taken place in Athens, Greece.

With the theme“Library: Dialogue for Change”, the congress gathered more than 3,300 delegates representing the library sector of over 130 countries around the world to participate in, attracted more than 500 presenters at 250 open sessions, nearly 200 poster presentations, 30 lighting talks and 20 satellite meetings on a variety of topics. Also during the congress, 11 key sessions were live streamed, providing opportunities to follow the world largest library forum for thousands of people all across the globe. The IFLA WLIC 2019 sessions focused on current and future issues of library development, contributing to clarify the congress theme: dialogue to exchange and learn, to offer opportunities for everyone to listen and to be listened.

Throughout the Congress, a number of exciting statements were announced by IFLA, including the launch of IFLA 2019-2024 Strategy and introduction of major new features to the Global Vision Ideas Store. The Strategy will be the roadmap for the future in uniting, supporting and transforming the library field. It also provides a reference point for libraries in developing the action plans attaching with the general development trend of the world.

Within the 85th IFLA Congress framework, the Vietnamese delegation, represented by director of the National Library of Viet Nam has participated actively and fully in such Congress sessions as: 

- The Conference of Directors of National Libraries (CDNL) under the theme “Next Generations” with the participation of 94 representives from 62 national libraries around the world. The conference has listened to the report of survey results on the implementation of digital activities of national libraries around the world; the presentations of IFLA Governing Board about plans and major action programs of IFLA, especially the IFLA visions, missions and four strategic directions in the coming years – new roles, new capabilities, new partnerships: position, roles, responsibilities and actions of national libraries in line with  general development strategy of the global library industry; the presentations of keynote speakers on visualization of functions and activities of national libraries worldwide; the discussions about activities that engage young people, position, role and important nature of national libraries currently and in the future...

-  Sessions by IFLA President and General Secretary reported on IFLA highlights in 2018, and discussing Global Vision, IFLA Strategy 2019-2024: key tasks in the strategy and implementation directions to build a strong and united library field to secure the future of libraries; the President Elect’s session under the theme “Let’s work together” encouraged librarians to think about new links and how to apply them to the development of a global library career.

- The Asean-Oceania Symposium attracted the presence of a large number of librarians from countries in the region and representatives of the IFLA Governing Board. The symposium reported about higlights of the region in 2018, discussed issues of common interests in the region and development directions for the coming year.

-  Open session ofUNESCO informed delegates about programs, projects and legal documents related to the library sector; Session about Libraries, archives and museums in dialogue discussed the ways to improve the users’s subject access to the complementary collections and introduced the digital format image collections that link libraries, archives and museums; Sessions about role of the library publishing industry in making changes; Session about national information and library policies in support of the UN Sustainable Development Goals…

- Sessions to announce new standards that have just been endorsed by IFLA recently including Guidelines on Public Interner Access in Libraries and Guidelines for Setting up a Digital Unification Project; the IFLA Metadata Reports Session – Cataloguing with subject analysis and access and bibliography; Sessions about Toolkit – Literacy and Reading; Session on National Libraries: Evolving spaces mentioned designing, arranging and managing the library spaces, human resources and collections; Session on Digital opportunities and challenges for library services to children and youth; Session East vesus West discussed the way to change, influence and promote the importance of the international relations activities in the library field...

In parallel with the congress activities, the NLV delegation has had effective meetings and working with libraries and organizations having cooperative relations with the NLV; actively participated in library visit programs as well as the activities that create connection points for librarian community at the congress; joined the exhibition on library equipment and products to learn about new library solutions.

During the Closing Ceremony, many Honours and Awards were granted to individuals and organizations who have made significant contributions to the global library career. Ms. Christine Mackenzie has delivered speech to officially take the IFLA Presidency, term 2019-2021.

The 86th World Library and Information Congress (IFLA WLIC 2020) will be held in Dublin, Ireland on August 15-21, 2020.

Some photos about the 85th IFLA Congress and activities of the NLV delegation at the congress:

Opening Ceremony of the 85th IFLA Congress

IFLA President Glòria Pérez-Salméron and General Secretary Gerald Leitner delivering speeches at the Opening Ceremony

Conference of Directors of National Libraries around the world

Some sessions of the Congress

Meeting withIFLAPresident and General Secretary

Meeting and exchanging with international library colleagues

TPoster exhibition at the 85th IFLA Congress

Cultural exchange Gala night in Athens

Closing Ceremony of the 85th IFLA Congress


News and photos: NLV