Italian Library Association, Bibliopride, Agenda 2030 and IFLA Stories: the Lazio Region Experience
AIB Lazio vice-president
In September 2021, the Italian Library Association (Associazione italiana biblioteche, AIB) organized the 10th edition of “Bibliopride – The National Week of Libraries”, an event during which libraries are encouraged to promote initiatives revolving around a specific topic. The topic for this year’s edition was Libraries for Agenda 2030.
Wondering about what to propose to the libraries of its region, the Lazio branch of the AIB was inspired by a beautiful project of the IFLA called SDG Stories. This initiative aims at sharing experiences at an international level on the role that libraries can play in pursuing the Sustainable Development Goals. Italy is not yet represented by any story within the IFLA Library Map of the World and so we thought: why not start from the SDG Stories of Lazio?
Therefore, between August and September 2021, AIB Lazio encouraged all the libraries of the region to think about what activities carried out in libraries can pursue the objectives of Agenda 2030.
The perspective we wanted to share with librarians was to start from the assumption that all the activities of libraries somehow pursue the Sustainable Development Goals. However, these activities need to be shared so that they can be understood, valued, promoted, and widespread. They need to leave their libraries in order to become good practices available to other libraries.
Our regional branch received a total of six stories from libraries of different kinds: public reading libraries (Public Library, Segni; Galline Bianche Library, Rome), university libraries (Giorgio Aprea Library, University of Cassino; Ludovico Quaroni Library of the PDTA Department, Sapienza University of Rome), research libraries (Library of RM1-Research Area, Italian National Research Council-CNR), and ecclesiastical libraries (General Library of the Center for Historical Studies PP. Barnabiti). The stories can be found on the Association’s website: https://www.aib.it/struttura/sezioni/lazio/laz-con/2021/92793-bibliopride-2021-lazio/
Each library suggested and shared through its story different ways of pursuing the Sustainable Development Goals. These include, for example, the design of an environmentally friendly library and the planning of meetings aimed at promoting a close-knit community, without inequalities. Furthermore, some libraries proposed initiatives connected with education, biodiversity and legality, and the development of innovative events as a means to foster and promote the heritage of libraries, putting users at the center.
During an online event called “Lazio Stories” held on October 1st, 2021, librarians were invited to personally tell the stories of their libraries (https://youtu.be/PwXQpCnswtQ). The event was an exciting moment of sharing, but the stories were not the only protagonists: the most central aspect was the comparison among the various experiences and the enhancement of the great role that librarians can play within their communities.
AIB Lazio is still cooperating with the libraries that took part in Lazio Stories: we are currently translating the various stories into English, and we expect to send them to the IFLA very soon so that Italy can contribute to the IFLA Library Map of the World.