SDG11 Logo​2018 will see a focus on Sustainable Development Goal 11 – Sustainable Cities and Communities – at the UN. This is an opportunity to share how successful libraries can be drivers of successful societies, by promoting meaningful access to information for all. 

As one means of doing this, IFLA will work through the NGO Major Group – a network of non-governmental organisations active at the UN – in order to make its voice heard more loudly. Engagement in Major Groups opens up the possibility to address Member States directly in meetings, and build alliances.

IFLA's position paper sets out the four elements of meaningful access – physical connectivity, social and cultural norms, skills and legal frameworks. These come together at the level of the individual and community, making the difference between information-driven development and failure to achieve the SDGs. 

It highlights in particular the role of libraries as public, community spaces, where other actors can come together to promote change. In a digital world, the importance of a physical place for meeting remains high. It also underlines the importance of libraries in helping everyone take their place within their societies. 

The IFLA contribution is available as a PDF