IFLA Newsletter, December 2023

The message below accompanies the December 2023 edition of the IFLA Newsletter.

IFLA Newsletter, Vol. 3, No. 12

Welcome to the December 2023 edition of the IFLA Newsletter, this month focused on the topic of values, ethics and rights.

The choice of theme comes from the celebration of the 75th Anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, signed on 10 December 1948. This of course includes Article 19, reflected in IFLA’s own values, which underlines the importance of freedom of expression, including the rights to seek, receive and impart information.

This remains at the heart of what libraries are and do – the idea that ensuring access to information, and the freedom to engage with it and use it – is a vital precondition for achieving wider development.

The importance of access to information is not the only value that drives our work. As both a membership organisation, and one that depends on the work of committed volunteers, ready to give up their time, energy and ideas to build a stronger global field, we also rely on agreed values and ethics to work together effectively.

This edition includes a great range of contributions from our Professional Units, underlining how issues of ethics, values and rights flow through their work.

Also important, especially in the relationship between the Governing Board and the wider community, is a sense of accountability, as is the feeling of being part of a single global field which, despite its diversity, also has much that it shares.

The need to work on this, while also celebrating IFLA’s successes, has been at the heart of the agenda set for the Governing Board by IFLA’s President, Vicki McDonald. In her message to Members and volunteers, on the occasion of the 100th day of the Board’s mandate, she reported on progress against this.

Highlights include more direct and open communication with members and volunteers, work to listen to experiences of working with the Strategy, and to make participation in a global field a reality in all parts of the world. Vicki also shared updates on work towards the Board’s ethical duty to prepare IFLA for the future, with important progress towards a review of our Congress model and on wider sustainability.

Read on to find out more not just about the work of our Board, but also your chance to nominate a colleague who has made a major contribution to the field for one of our Honours or Awards. In addition to the Professional Unit contributions mentioned above, there are updates on our advocacy work, including important wins at the COP28 climate change talks, as well as news about new members and upcoming opportunities.

Finally, to repeat our message for International Volunteers Day, we wanted to thank everyone involved in our work!

Happy reading and see you in 2024!