IFLA will be attending the 2023 annual meeting of the Partner2Connect initiative, established by the International Telecommunications Union in order to bring together actors committed to expanding  internet access. At the event, we will be making two key pledges, focused on building understanding of where libraries are today, and good digital inclusion practices. 

International statistics show that billions of people worldwide remain offline. Even among those counted as connected, they often only have very limited possibilities – due to the quality of their connection, the materials available to them, and the skills they have.

As such, there remains plenty of work to do to achieve the goal of universal meaningful connectivity, widely regarded both as a human right and an indispensible pre-condition for the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals.

In this, the need is pressing to mobilise all relevant actors and promote partnerships which deliver on development goals. Libraries of course have a role to play here.

IFLA is therefore happy to participate in the Partner2Connect annual meeting, held in Geneva, and to launch two pledges closely linked to our wider mission to ensure libraries realise their potential to deliver positive change.

In particular, we will be highlighting work to bring together existing efforts to geolocalise libraries in order to facilitate their inclusion into wider connectivity strategies, as well as to develop a connection of effective practices on digital inclusion in order to share good ideas and stimulate innovation globally.