Planning a Satellite Meeting

Contents of this page:

  1. Specific information and forms for upcoming WLIC Satellite Meetings
  2. Information for Units planning a Satellite Meeting
  3. Shared ideas from the Professional Units

Specific information and forms for upcoming WLIC Satellite Meetings

2019 WLIC - Athens, Greece

The IFLA Professional Committee is asking all Professional Units to start their planning with regard to Satellite Meetings connected to the IFLA WLIC 2019 in Athens, Greece from 24-30 August.

The National Committee has compiled a list of possible hosts in Greece, IFLA Headquarters can provide this to you upon request (
Professional Units are also welcome to work with other hosts of their choice as long as the location is within 6 hours land travel of Athens, or 3 hours air travel time.

Please use the following documents:
* Satellite Meeting Proposal Form for WLIC 2019 Athens, Greece [PDF]. Deadline for submission by 12 November 2018.
* Possible Satellite Meeting hosts (as provided by the Athens National Committee) [contact for details].
* IFLA Guidelines for Satellite Meetings [PDF].

Information for Units planning a Satellite Meeting

Formal Guidelines for Planning a Meeting

The IFLA Guidelines for Satellite Meetings [PDF] outline the formal arrangements that have to be met for all IFLA Satellite Meetings.

Financing the Meeting

Satellite Meeting organisers are welcome to contact regular IFLA Exhibitors and Sponsors regarding sponsorship of a Satellite Meeting, but preferably no earlier than 12 months before the Satellite Meeting is due to take place (that is from September of the previous year). This gives the WLIC organisers time to approach these regular contacts first. There is no need to inform IFLA Headquarters of any sponsorship agreements during the planning stage of a Satellite Meeting, however, at some point in time (usually in November), IFLA Headquarters will ask all Professional Units to inform them of any sponsorship deals (for Satellite Meetings, but also for workshops, publications, or any other activity)  in order to make sure that the IFLA Corporate Supporters get the appropriate recognition within IFLA.

Satellite Meetings organisers may charge participants a registration fee to cover (some of) the costs as long as the aim is not to make a profit, but to break-even (that is, there should be no planned profit or loss). If surplus funds are generated, they are distributed as set out in the agreement between IFLA and the host organisation.

What are Satellite Meetings?

Satellite Meetings allow IFLA Professional Units to devote more time to a specific topic than is available during the IFLA World Library and Information Congress (WLIC).

They may also provide a way to engage with people in the local geographical area of the event who might not otherwise attend the WLIC or be involved in IFLA activities.

They are not part of the IFLA WLIC but serve as a gateway to the WLIC therefore it is important that a Satellite Meeting is supportive of IFLA’s goals and mission. In principle, Satellite Meetings should add to the value of having a WLIC in a region and not draw potential delegates away from it.

Where do they take place?

They take place either in the immediate metropolitan region of the Congress, or at maximum, within 3 hours’ flight travel time to the congress city or 6 hours' over-land travel time.

The National Committee (NC) of the WLIC recruits a number of potential host organisations,whose contacts are then passed on to the IFLA Professional Units to assist them in choosing a suitable venue and host.

When are they?

They take place either before or after the WLIC but with no more than two free days inbetween.

Who organises them?

Satellite Meetings are organized by IFLA Professional Units but the host organization carries the legal and financial responsibility, unless specifically agreed otherwise with IFLA, and takes care of all the logistics including the web site.

All Satellite Meetings are approved by the IFLA Professional Committee.

Shared ideas from the Professional Units

Monthly planning

The Continuing Professional Development and Workplace Learning Section has made a guide for planning a Satellite Meeting going through the tasks month by month. They have shared this as an example of how to plan such an event. Let them know if you would like to help develop this guide. 

Virtual presentations

The News Media Section has some experience using virtual and recorded presentations for presenters who cannot travel to be there in person and they are happy to be contacted to discuss how this worked.. The presenter writes the paper as usual but instead of presenting the paper in person, s/he records the presentation in PowerPoint or as an .mp3 file. The PowerPoint or .mp3 is then played for those attending the meeting. Following the virtual presentation, you may arrange for the presenter to answer questions by Skype video.

Do you have ideas?

Do any Professional Units have ideas or best practice about finding sponsorship or funding support for a Satellite Meeting? Let me know!

Last update: 2 October 2018