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Call for Papers

Public Libraries Section

Building strong communities: unleashing the potential of libraries to build community capacity, engagement and identity

The Public Libraries Section in collaboration with The Regional Library Scania, Malmö City Library and The Swedish Arts Council are organizing a satellite meeting in Malmo, Sweden August 7 - 10, 2010.


Increasingly libraries, especially public libraries, are recognised as having a valuable role to play in community development through building capacity, enabling social engagement and fostering a sense of identity within the communities they serve. Through libraries individuals and groups increase their skills and confidence, develop their sense of identity and belonging, participate in first culture retention, and access the memories that define who we are. Libraries take action to offer equity of opportunity for all. They do this through their services, collections, programmes and places. These activities support economic, cultural and social well-being. Librarians have considerable expertise in designing programmes to achieve outcomes in these areas.


The objective is to acknowledge and celebrate librarians' expertise by sharing ideas, broadening awareness, and visiting some best practice examples, and above all to inspire. The programme will encourage and resource librarians to position their library services as part of a multi-faceted response to wider community development needs. This will influence decision makers to recognise and strengthen the critical role that libraries play in society.

Subject of Papers:

  • The library's impact and social role in the community
  • Best innovative practice from public libraries according to the description of theme and background
  • Political processes leading to successful libraries

Submission guidelines

Interested parties are invited to submit an abstract (maximum 350 words) in English for a proposed paper before 16 January 2010.
The presentation will each last approximately 20 minutes
The abstract should include the title of the paper; name, position and employer of the presenter(s); email address; and telephone/fax numbers.

This should be sent to:
Ruth Ornholt
Public Libraries Section Standing Committee
Email: ruth.ornholt@post.hfk.no

Evaluation and Deadlines

Proposals will be reviewed by a sub-committee of members of the Standing Committee of the Public Libraries Section and the collaboration parties.
Successful proposals will be identified by 15 February 2010.
Papers must be due by 15 May 2010. Papers should be in English and contain an abstract.


All proposals must be in before 16 January 2010.

Please note

All expenses, including registration for the conference, travel, accommodation etc., are the responsibility of the authors/presenters. No financial support can be provided by IFLA, but a special invitation can be issued to authors/presenters if that is required.

Last update: 20 January 2010