IFLA Secretary General Gerald LeitnerWelcome to the first IFLA newsletter!

When we carried out our first ever survey of IFLA’s Members two years ago, a key thing you highlighted was your desire to understand more about our Federation, what we are doing, and how to get involved.

The last two years have seen intense work to deliver. Already in August, we launched our new governance structures, focused on trying to make IFLA easier to understand and work with, as well as our new website.

And now, today, I am thrilled to share our first newsletter, bringing you a selection of the work carried out for you, with you, by you, in support of a strong and united library field powering literate, informed and participatory societies.

Each newsletter will have a theme, reflecting a key issue within our field and beyond. They will often connect to a global agenda where libraries have strong interests, or a major contribution to make.

This first newsletter therefore centres on sustainability – what we can do today, in order to ensure the best possible conditions for those that come after us.

This focus on the future will be familiar to all of those who joined us at the World Library and Information Congress in August.

With the theme ‘Let’s Work Together for the Future’, it was an exciting opportunity to reflect on the developments and trends that will shape our field in the years to come, and how we can make the most of them. And if you missed out, read further to find out how to access all the recorded sessions.

In particular the Congress – and subsequent General Assembly – provided a chance both to thank IFLA President 2019-2021 Christine Mackenzie for her exceptional service in difficult times, and to welcome IFLA’s President 2021-2023, Barbara Lison.

Her theme – Libraries building a sustainable future – will shape our work in the coming years. Find out more about what this means in the interview below.

Sustainability will be high on the global agenda also for the coming months. We’re at the beginning of Urban October, a month of events which highlight the importance of building strong communities, while in November, world leaders will come together for COP26. You can find out more in our summary of the Libraries Sustain keynote session at WLIC below.

In these areas, libraries have a central role to play, as centres for sharing information, promoting behaviour change, building community, and supporting research.  Furthermore, in order for future generations to benefit from the knowledge we have today, we need also to ensure preservation – including of digital content – and manage risk. Read on for just a few examples of how IFLA is supporting libraries’ work in this area.

Finally, and as mentioned above, we are also working hard to ensure that IFLA grows stronger and stronger into the future, enabled by our new governance structures. I want to offer a warm welcome all those who have taken on volunteer roles, and to encourage everyone else to think about how you can be involved.

I look forward to working with you all to inspire, engage, enable and connect our field, and to carry IFLA on to a bright future.

Sign up and stay connected with the global library field all year round!

We are IFLA!