IFLA Division C is hosting a monthly Webinar Series for LIS students that aims to create a place for students to share their projects, research, and ideas about different topics related to libraries. Each webinar will address a different theme. All events are held online and are open to everyone (no registration fees).

March’s webinar will be dedicated to the Impact of Library Advocacy.

Advocacy is very important for libraries. It may involve financial and public relations support for libraries. It can include donations or support from federal and local governments. Libraries are increasingly in the position of demonstrating their economic value to the community.

What can library advocacy involve? Here are some examples:

  • letters sent to law makers, library officials and citizens to describe the importance of libraries and to promote the library;
  • programs that show the value of library services and the resources that the library offers to the community;
  • events, readings and reading promotion activities that show the public how important libraries are in the field of literacy;
  • lobbying political representatives.
Cleo Jones
Cleo Jones

Cleo Jones will be our keynote speaker presenting on the topic of “Libraries  Deliver: the power of libraries to deliver Social Capital. Persuading decision makers that Libraries matter.  She is the Lifelong Learning Strategic Officer for Libraries, Schools and Lifelong Learning,  Communities and Families  in the City of Edinburgh.



Mrs. Shalani Dilinika Jayamanne Mohottige will be the student speaker presenting on the topic of “Every voice makes a difference: The importance of ‘Blogs’ to promote library advocacy.” She is a PhD student at the  School of Computing and Information, University of Pittsburgh, USA. She is also a Lecturer, Department of Library and Information Science, University of Kelaniya, Sri Lanka.

She started the library blog, “Bringing the Library into the 21st Century,” to create awareness and disclosure on the importance of libraries as 21st-century learning hubs. This is an individual project that she developed with the aim of supporting libraries. The blog includes a variety of articles related to libraries, such as “Role of Public Libraries in Community Learning,” “Can Human Libraries Mitigate Cultural Conflicts?”, “Public Library Services Beyond Physical Boundaries during Covid-19 Era: A Catalyst for Change,” etc.

Ms. Saloni Chaudhary will be the student speaker presenting on the topic of “Advocacy opportunities for libraries in digital inclusion initiatives taken by the Indian Government.” She is currently a Junior Research Fellow at the Department of Library and Information Science at Banaras Hindu University. She graduated in Ancient Indian History, Culture & Archaeology and did post-graduate studies in Library and Information Science from Banaras Hindu University, Varanasi. Her research is in the area of scientometrics.

She will highlight the challenges of the digital divide in India during the COVID-19 lockdown  As per a survey report by National Statistics Office (NSO), titled ‘Household Social Consumption on Education’, only 4% of the rural population has access to computers as against 23% of the Urban population of students above 5 years of age. Meanwhile, 68% of the Indian population lives in rural areas with poor connectivity. Only 15% of the rural households have access to the internet as against the 42% of an urban household. She will focus on advocacy measures the library has to offer to counter these challenges, such as digital literacy skills delivered through workshops, training programmes, and informative podcasts arranged by libraries that will help lessen the gap between digitally divided communities.

Loida Garcia Febo
Loida Garcia Febo

Loida Garcia Febo will deliver the closing keynote presentation with the title “Each librarian is an advocate! Working together we can advance the library agenda with decision makers.”

Loida Garcia-Febo is a Puerto Rican American librarian and International Library Consultant expert in library services to diverse populations and human rights. President of the American Library Association 2018-2019. Garcia-Febo is worldwide known for her passion about diversity, communities, sustainability, innovation and digital transformation, library workers, library advocacy, wellness for library workers, and new librarians about which she has taught in 28 countries. In her job, she helps libraries, companies and organizations strategize programs, services and strategies in areas related to these topics and many others. Garcia-Febo has a Bachelors in Business Education, Masters in Library and Information Sciences.

She has a long history of service at library associations. Highlights include- At IFLA: Governing Board 2013-2017, Co-Founder of IFLA New Professionals, two-term Member/Expert resource person of the Free Access to Information and Freedom of Expression Committee of IFLA (FAIFE), two-term member of the Continuing Professional Development and Workplace Learning Section of IFLA (CPDWL). Currently: CPDWL Advisor, Information Coordinator of the Management of Library Associations Section. Currently at ALA: Chair, Status of Women in Librarianship and just completed a term leading the groundbreaking ALA’s United Nations 2030 Sustainable Development Goals Task Force to develop a multi-year strategic plan for ALA. Born, raised, and educated in Puerto Rico. She has advocated for libraries at the United Nations, the European Union Parliament, U.S. Congress, NY State Senate, NY City Hall, and on sidewalks and streets in various states.

Member of ACURIL in the Caribbean!
American Library Association President 2018-2019
Chair, ALA 2030 Sustainable Development Goals Task Force 2020-2021, Chair, ALA Committee on the Status of Women in Librarianship (COSWL), Executive Board, Freedom to Read Foundation, IFLA Management of Library Associations Section, Information Coordinator, IFLA New Professionals Co-Founder, Advisor, Founder, New Librarians Global Connections online series, IFLA Governing Board Member 2013-2017.

Important date

  • The webinar will be held on March 23, 2022 from 16:00-17:30 CET.  Check the SET Events post to register.

For further questions, contact Diane Pennington ([email protected]) and Susanne List-Tretthahn ([email protected]).