The Santiago Declaration

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Access to Information to Achieve Sustainable Development in Latin America and the Caribbean

The Santiago Declaration is a statement of libraries’ commitment to sustainable development in Latin America and the Caribbean, and a call on governments to provide the support necessary to realise this potential. It is a tool for librarians, libraries, library associations and friends of libraries in advocating to governments, the UN and others.

The Declaration is open for signatures

The more associations, institutions and other organisations sign up to this Declaration, the more powerful it is, and the stronger the message it sends in support of libraries and access to information. 

We therefore suggest that you take one or more of the following actions, in order to make the Declaration a success:

  1. Sign your institution and/or library association up to the Santiago Declaration – you can do this here
  2. Who are the major non-governmental organisations working on issues mentioned in the SDGs? Write to them and suggest they sign up. 
  3. Work with colleagues in your country to draft a letter to your government presenting the Santiago Declaration, and suggesting a meeting to talk about how to achieve its objectives.
  4. Work with colleagues in your country to write to your local UNESCO, UNDP or UN office, presenting the Declaration, and proposing a meeting to talk about it.

Read the declaration


Recognising that:

  • Public access to information and knowledge is a universal human right and an essential tool for achieving sustainable development in Latin America and the Caribbean;
  • Public access to information and knowledge allows people to exercise other fundamental rights, and to gain knowledge, learn and take conscious decisions that can improve their lives,
  • Communities that have access to relevant and timely information can be better placed to eradicate poverty and inequality, to optimise agriculture and economic activities, provide quality education, and promote health, participation in cultural life, research and innovation;
  • Communities need spaces which support life-long learning, in particular for people with low levels of literacy, in situations of vulnerability or who have disabilities;

Acknowledging that:

  • Libraries around the world offer the physical and virtual infrastructure to guarantee trusted and tailored public access to information and knowledge, co-creation and innovation to all citizens, reducing the digital divide through inclusive and innovative information services.
  • There are more than a billion registered library users in the World, and for many of them, libraries represent a unique space enabling access to the Internet, social networks, e-Government services, publications, data, and other publicly accessible information resources;
  • Libraries are perfectly suited places to empower people through media and information literacy as a pre-requisite for equitable and critical access to information and knowledge, allowing for full engagement in democratic and civic life;
  • Libraries play a vital social role in their communities, promoting values such as equity, solidarity and trust;
  • There is already a clear position by the International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions (IFLA) concerning the post-2015 sustainable development agenda, which engages and mobilises libraries to work in support of the SDGs.

We therefore commit to:

  • Reaffirm the importance of libraries as strategic allies in the fulfilment of the SDGs, with a particular focus on public access to information and knowledge for all citizens and all communities;
  • Raise awareness among governments of the need to develop strategies and mechanisms, at the national and local levels, which will facilitate and reinforce the work of libraries in order to maintain and reinforce the work of libraries in Latin America and the Caribbean, and in particular which allow them to provide decent, egalitarian and trusted public spaces;
  • Reinforce the role of libraries in the promotion and dissemination of information resources produced in Latin America and the Caribbean;
  • Encourage governments to enter into agreements and pass laws, including on copyright, which facilitate public access to information and knowledge without barriers for all citizens of the region;
  • Support the development and provision of the resources necessary for the involvement of libraries in Latin America and the Caribbean in national and regional projects which aim to implement one or more of the SDGs;
  • Facilitate collaboration and exchange of knowledge, experience and good practices through inclusive national and regional initiatives in Latin America and the Caribbean;
  • Facilitate discussion around library policies for access to information as part of a universal approach to human rights, as well as the right to knowledge.
  • Call on the Member States of the United Nations, in the context of discussions on SDG 16 at the 2019 High Level Political Forum, to include discussion on SDG 16.10 and the relevance of public access to information and knowledge for all of the 2030 Agenda.



  1. International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions (IFLA)
  2. البرنامج المصري للمكتبات والمعلومات وتكنولوجيا التعليم (Egypt)
  3. Acuerdo de Bibliotecas Universitarias de la Provincia de Córdoba (ABUC) (Argentina)
  4. Asociación Bibliotecológica de Guatemala (ABG) (Guatemala)
  5. Asociación Civil de Bibliotecarios Jurídicos (ACBJ) (Argentina)
  6. Asociación Cubana de Bibliotecarios (ASCUBI) (Cuba)
  7. Asociación de Bibliotecarios de Jujuy (ABJ) (Argentina)
  8. Asociación de Bibliotecarios de la Costa Uruguay (Argentina)
  9. Asociación de Bibliotecarios Graduados de la República Argentina (ABGRA) (Argentina)
  10. Asociación de Bibliotecólogos del Uruguay (ABU) (Uruguay)
  11. Asociación Mexicana de Bibliotecarios, A. C. (México)
  12. Asociación Nacional de Bibliotecarios Eugenio Espejo (ANABE) (Ecuador)
  13. Asociación Nicaragüense de Bibliotecarios y Profesionales Afines (ANIBIPA) (Nicaragua)
  14. Asociación Panameña de Bibliotecarios (APABIB) (Panamá)
  15. Asociación Paraguaya de Gestores de la Información (APGI) (Paraguay)
  16. Asociación una Biblioteca para mi Pueblo (UBiP) (Perú)
  17. Associação Casa da Árvore (Brasil)
  18. Associação Catarinense de Bibliotecários (ACB) (Brasil)
  19. Associação Clube Literário Tamboril (Brasil)
  20. Associação Cultural Esportiva Social Amigos (ACESA) (Brasil)
  21. Associação de Cegos Louis Braille (Brasil)
  22. Associação dos Bibliotecários e Profissionais da Ciência da Informação do Distrito Federal (Brasil)
  23. Associação dos Bibliotecários do Estado do Piauí (ABEPI) (Brasil)
  24. Associação Profissional de Bibliotecários da Paraíba (APB-PB) (Brasil)
  25. Associação Profissional de Bibliotecários de Mato Grosso do Sul (APBMS) (Brasil)
  26. Associação Profissional de Bibliotecários de Pernambuco (Brasil)
  27. Associação Profissional dos Bibliotecários e Documentalistas de Sergipe (APBDSE) (Brasil)
  28. Associação Rio-grandense de Bibliotecários (Brasil)
  29. Associação Vaga Lume (Brasil)
  30. Association des Professionnels Bibliothecaires, Archivistes et Documentalistes du Burundi (APROBAD) (Burundi)
  31. Association of Caribbean University, Research and Institutional Libraries (ACURIL)
  32. Association of Hungarian Librarians (MKE) (Hungary)
  33. Banco Nacional de Desenvolvimento Econômico e Social (BNDES) (Brasil)
  34. Biblioteca Brasiliana Guita e José Mindlin (Brasil)
  35. Biblioteca de Ciências Humanas (BCH) da Universidade Federal do Ceará (Brasil)
  36. Biblioteca del Congreso Nacional de Chile (Chile)
  37. Biblioteca del Instituto de Altos Estudios Nacionales (Ecuador)
  38. Biblioteca Depositaria de las Naciones Unidas y Hábitat (Argentina)
  39. Biblioteca Especializada del Consejo para la Transparencia (Chile)
  40. Biblioteca Especializada del Instituto de Investigaciones Hortícolas “Liliana Dimitrova” (Cuba)
  41. Biblioteca Municipal "Paula Rached" (Brasil)
  42. Biblioteca Nacional de Uruguay (Uruguay)
  43. Biblioteca Nacional Eugenio Espejo (Ecuador)
  44. Biblioteca Pública do Estado de Santa Catarina (Brasil)
  45. Biblioteca Pública Municipal Hélio Antônio de Oliveira "Treula" (Brasil)
  46. Biblioteca y Archivo Central del Congreso de la Nación (BACCN) (Paraguay)
  47. BIBLIOTHECOM (Haiti)
  48. BiblioWorks (Bolivia)
  49. Biteca (Colombia)
  50. Blog "Alfin en la escuela" (Argentina)
  51. Câmara Mineira do Livro (Brasil)
  52. Capítulo de Geografía A.C. (México)
  53. Central University of Rajasthan (India)
  54. Centro Universitário do Rio Grande do Norte (Brasil)
  55. Colegio de Bibliotecarios de Chile A.G. (Chile)
  56. Colegio de Bibliotecólogos del Perú (Perú)
  57. Colegio de Profesionales en Bibliotecología de Costa Rica (COPROBI) (Costa Rica)
  58. Colegio de Profesionales en Ciencias de la Información de Bolivia (CPCIB) (Bolivia)
  59. Colegio Nacional de Bibliotecarios, A.C. (CNB) (México)
  60. Conhecimento Social (Brasil)
  61. Conselho Federal de Biblioteconomia (CFB) (Brasil)
  62. Conselho Regional de Biblioteconomia do Estado de São Paulo - 8ª Região (Brasil)
  63. Crops Research Institute (CSIR) (Ghana)
  64. Ecole Supérieure Africaine des Technologies de l'Information et de la Communication (ESATIC) (Côte d’Ivoire)
  65. Escuela Interamericana de Bibliotecología (Colombia)
  66. Federação Brasileira de Associações de Bibliotecários e Instituições (Brasil)
  67. Fundação Biblioteca Nacional (Brasil)
  68. Ghana Library Association (GLA) (Ghana)
  69. Ghana Library Authority - Laterbiokorshie Branch Library (Ghana)
  70. Goethe-Institut São Paulo (Brasil)
  71. Grupo Pacto Santa Anita (Peru)
  72. Indian Public Library Movement (India)
  73. Instituto Brasileiro de Informação em Ciência e Tecnologia (IBICT) (Brasil)
  74. Instituto Cultural Abrapalavra (Brasil)
  75. Instituto de Pesquisas, Estudos,Cultura e Educação (IPECE) (Brasil)
  76. Instituto ORIOR (Brasil)
  77. Instituto Profesional Galdames (IPG) Sistema Nacional de Bibliotecas (Chile)
  78. Kenya National Library Service (knls) (Kenya)
  79. Makerere University Library (Uganda)
  80. National Association of Librarians and Information Professionals (Saint Lucia)
  81. National Library and Information Services of The Bahamas (Bahamas)
  82. Norwegian Union of Librarians (Norway)
  83. OpenConnection (Colombia)
  84. Open Knowledge - Brasil (Brasil)
  85. Organización Nacional de Ciegos Españoles (ONCE) (Spain)
  86. Plano Nacional do Livro e Leitura (PNLL) (Brasil)
  87. PROBIGUA (Proyecto Bibliotecas Guatemala) (Guatemala)
  88. Red de Redes de Información (RECIARIA) (Argentina)
  89. Red Nacional de Asociaciones de Bibliotecarios de la República Argentina (RENABIAR) (Argentina)
  90. Rede de Bibliotecas e Centros de Informação em Arte no Estado do Rio de Janeiro - REDARTE/RJ (Brasil)
  91. Saint Louis University - Madrid Campus (Spain)
  92. Sistema de Bibliotecas da Universidade Estadual de Campinas (UNICAMP) (Brasil)
  93. Sistema de Bibliotecas e Arquivo da Universidade Federal Fluminense (SDC/UFF) (Brasil)
  94. Smt. Hansa Mehta Library - The Maharaja Sayajirao University of Baroda (India)
  95. Unidades de Información de la Región Central en Salud (UNIRECS) (Colombia)
  96. Universidad de las Regiones Autónomas de la Costa Caribe Nicaragüense. Sistema Bibliotecario (Nicaragua)
  97. Universidade Federal da Bahia (Brasil)
  98. Universidade Federal da Integração Latino-Americana (UNILA) (Brasil)
  99. Universidade Federal de Sergipe (Brasil)
  100. Universiteit van Suriname Bibliotheek (Suriname)
  101. University of Ghana - Accra City Campus (ACC) Library (Ghana)
  102. University of Health and Allied Sciences Library (Ghana)

*If you have signed the Declaration and your organisation's name does not appear after a few days, please contact us: If you are having problems to submit the form online, please download this form in Word, complete it and send it attached to

Statements, LDP (Library Development Programme), Access to information, Advocacy, Development, Libraries, Development and the UN 2030 Agenda, Latin America and the Caribbean, UN 2030 Agenda, UN SDGs, LAC

Last update: 22 March 2019