New Staff at UNESCO

As the leading UN institution working on education, science and culture, UNESCO is a key partner for libraries. IFLA already engages with the institution across a wide variety of issues, from cultural heritage at risk to Internet universality. The announcement of four new senior appointments in key sectors – in education, culture and communications and information, as well as a new Deputy Director-General – is therefore a useful opportunity to reaffirm these relationships.


IFLA’s Secretary General has written to congratulate the new appointments, notably the new Deputy Director General Xing Qu, who will join Director General Audrey Azoulay in leading the Organisation as a whole.


Work on Communication and Information is particularly relevant for IFLA. It includes many initiatives where IFLA is active, notably the Global Alliance for Partnerships on Media and Information Literacy, work on freedom of expression and access to information, documentary heritage, and the PERSIST programme on digital preservation. The new Assistant Director general is Moez Chakchouk.


In the field of education, IFLA has a shared interest with UNESCO in promoting universal literacy. In particular, UNESCO is leading work on Sustainable Development Goal 4 – education – which will be a key focus in the UN’s work in 2019. Through its work in collecting data on library usage around the world through the Library Map of the World, IFLA is in a strong position to contribute to this. Stefania Giannini has been appointed Assistant Director General here.


UNESCO’s Culture sector is responsible for key work on preserving heritage from destruction and trafficking. There are important opportunities to build capacity and understanding around the world to reduce risk, as well as strengthen implementation of the key international law in the field. Ernesto Renato Ottone Ramirez will be leading these efforts.


Across all of these areas, IFLA looks forwards to maintaining and reinforcing our collaboration in order to achieve our common goals.