How a united library field can tackle the challenges of the future: Ideas for actions

On 4 June – 14 June 2018, by email and online, 18 members from the Rare Books and Special Collections Standing Committee participated in a conversation about how a united library field can tackle the challenges of the future. Together all participants represent 266 years of library experience.

We built on the results from phase 1 of the conversation to gather ideas for actions for IFLA that help a united field tackle the challenges of the future. This is our contribution to the largest ideas store of actions.

Participants were all members of the Rare Books and Special Collections Standing Committee. Helen Vincent and Danielle Culpepper, the Section Officers, had attended the March workshop in Barcelona and had reported back to the Committee about the Global Vision at the time of that workshop. We included the Global Vision as an item at our Mid-Term business meeting at the National Library of Oslo in April, at which there was a review of the challenges and opportunities of the Global Vision and a preliminary discussion about how it could connect with the Section’s priorities and activities going forwards. So this was a group who came into the discussion already informed and already having had the opportunity to reflect on the Global Vision.

We began by a general email exchange during the week of June 4-8 in which participants voted for the top priorities and shared their thoughts about why they had chosen them. Our choice of priorities having been identified, we then used a survey to collect the first thoughts on ideas for action, and finally at an online conference call on June 14 we took this list of ideas and decided which ones to develop. Some members participated in all three stages of this discussion, and some in only one or two, but all contributed valuably to the process.

The Section’s full report can be accessed here