Corruption, and the suppression of information that might help people to lighten the burden of corruption, is everywhere. No country is free of this. IFLA/FAIFE is delighted that Punjabi University has boldly agreed to host the first, pilot, Transparency Workshop based on the content of IFLA’s Manifesto on Transparency, Good Governance and Freedom from Corruption.

India is an appropriate venue for the Workshop, not because corruption is a bigger problem here than elsewhere (it is not), but because the inspiration for the IFLA Manifesto came partly from some research on access to information carried out in Delhi (Sharma, Geeta and Sturges, Paul (2007) Using ICT to help the poor access public services: an action research programme, Information Development, 32(1) 15-23.). The idea behind the Workshops is that libraries (public and academic) can be transparency institutions, contributing towards good governance and limiting the scope for corruption. By providing access to print and electronic resources, libraries already contribute to social, political, economic and other forms of transparency, but there is a potential for much more. The Workshop will explore this potential in collaboration with the IATLIS. Indian Association of Teachers of Library and Information Science (IATLIS) is a 40 years old professional association active in LIS education, research, training, conferences, seminars, workshops and collaboration. One of its aims is to raise awareness of library and information professionals concerning the cutting and leading-edge of the library profession.

The Workshop

The inaugural session would be held from at 11.00 on Tuesday, 17 November 2009. From 13.30 on Tuesday until 14.00 on Wednesday 18 November 2009, in the Senate Hall at Punjabi University, Patiala, FAIFE’s presenters, Dr. Paul Sturges, Emeritus Professor, Department of Information Science, Loughborough University, Loughborough (UK), (Chair of FAIFE 2003-2009) and Dr. Kai Ekholm, Director and Chief Librarian, National Library of Finland, Helsinki (Finland), (Chair of FAIFE 2009-2011) will lead participants in the technical sessions of the Transparency Workshop. This will be based on the Workshop Materials available on the IFLA Website adapted to local circumstances for the occasion. The programme will include a mixture of lecture presentations and interactive exercises involving all participants.


Librarians of all levels of seniority and from any type of library are invited to apply to the Workshop Coordinator, Dr Jagtar Singh, Prof. and Head, Department of Library and Information Science, Punjabi University, Patiala – 147002 (Punjab) to participate in this event. The event is funded by the Swedish Development Agency Sida, which is particularly concerned that women and members of minorities are well represented amongst participants. Attendance is free of charge and refreshments (sessions’ tea and working lunch only) will be provided throughout proceedings. Participants themselves will have to manage their travel expenses, and pay for their accommodation, breakfast and dinner, if they prefer to stay at the Punjabi University Campus. A limit on numbers attending of 25 will apply, so early application is advised. The closing date for applications is 14 October 2009.

Expected outcomes

FAIFE intends that by the end of the Workshop participants will:

* understand more about the problem of corruption in society
* understand the ways in which transparency can alleviate the problem
* have developed an insight into the role libraries can play in greater transparency in society
* have examined the danger of corruption in the management and practice of library work
* have a clear idea of specific programmes that librarians and professional associations can promote for improving transparency and governance

FAIFE further hopes that participants will:

* resolve to commit themselves to disseminating the transparency message through their own professional activity

Dr. Jagtar Singh
IFLA-FAIFE Workshop Coordinator
President, Indian Association of Teachers of Library and Information Science (IATLIS)
Department of Library and Information Science
Punjabi University, Patiala – 147002 (Punjab) INDIA
Tel: 0175-3046179 and 3046442 (Office)
Fax: 0175-2283073.