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61st IFLA General Conference - Conference Proceedings - August 20-25, 1995

Round Table of Editors of Library Journals

Annual Report 1994

Author (s)

Michael Wise

Bayero University
Department of Library Science
P.M.B. 3011
Kano, Nigeria Fax: (234-64) 665905
is Chair of the Round Table of Editors of Library Journals.

Olga V. Timokhina

Russian State Library
Department of Foreign Library Science and International Relations
Ul. Vozdvizhenka 3
101000 Moscow
Fax: (7-095) 2002255
e-mail: irgb@glas.apc.org
is Secretary.

Executive Committee

The Round Table's Executive Committee numbers 14 from 11 countries.


Viability of Library Association Journals

The research project on viability of library association and other professional journals in Sub-Saharan Africa, which was completed during the report period, was published as Survival under Advers e Conditions: Proceedings of the African Library Science Journals Workshop, edited by Michael Wise, as No. 38 in the series, IFLA Publications. The second stage research, intended to produce an e xtended version of IFLA Professional Reports No. 13, Library Journals: How to Edit Them: Guidelines Prepared for the IFLA Round Table of Editors of Library Journals by Dietrich H. Borchardt an d published in 1987, will be undertaken in depth after the return of the project coordinator to the UK in 1995. This postponement is due largely to communication problems between Nigeria and many oth er developing countries.



Two issues of the Newsletter were published during the report period by the Secretary, Olga Timokhina. The May 1994 issue contains a list of library journals and serials in Latin American countries a nd their full addresses.

Future Conferences

Istanbul 1995

In line with the Round Table's Medium-Term Programme's objective of considering regional consensus about journal production, contributions will be looked for from southeast Europe and the Middle East ern countries.

Havana Meeting

The planning meting for Cuba was influenced by advance publicity from the Havana Organizing Committee offering to assist in the location of speakers for sessions planed. The Round Table therefore dec ided to emphasize Cuban and Latin American journal publishing, so that the examination, by region, of library journal publishing which had begun in Europe might be extended to the Western hemisphere in 1994. Difficult communications with Cuba, especially from Nigeria and Moscow, defeated the intention to concentrate all paper presentations on the region, and in the event Maria Margarita Le&oacut e;n Ortiz (Cuba) and Suzana Pinheiro Machado Mueller (Brazil) (paper presented by Sueli Do Amaral) provided principal papers, while Anthony Olden (UK) and Michael Wise followed up with papers about a spects of developing world publishing. The excellent simultaneous service provided by Cuban colleagues, which was a notable feature of the entire conference, enabled a high level of professional inte raction between Spanish and non-Spanish language delegates. This comparatively small meeting of the Round Table, which was attended by 30 editors from 11 countries, became a forum of stimulating exch ange of opinion, thanks to the presence of two young local translators.

Las revistas bibliotecológicas en Cuba

The paper provides statistics of publication during 30 years, the period during which, and in common with experience in many other countries, there has been a contraction of public funding, and there fore of the volume of publishing. Survival has, in some cases, depended on combining existing journals in order to maintain viability, while the application of desk top publishing techniques has cont ributed to cost control. Specializations recorded in the current decade amount to about half of the total volume of publishing. After journals and journal articles on information science and general librarianship, with 47% of the total, come professional associations at 17%, user service and information service, each with 12% and terminology and new technology, each with 6%.

The Publishing of Library and Information Science Journals in Brazil

Four main library and information science journals of the country began almost simultaneously in 1972 and 1973. They came into being as a result of the favorable political and economic factors of the late 1960s, but the reversal of these favorable influences in the 1980s brought about closures of two, and continuing production problems. A factor in survival has been the amount of institutional s upport these journals have received. This has also brought about a higher degree of professionalism in their editing. Authors with higher degrees, and therefore obviously with considerable experience in research, writing up and presentation of data, form the majority of writers of published articles. Brazilian authors form the overwhelming majority. In facing the future, success must depend upon serious professionalism, application of new technologies for both graphics and dissemination, and aggressive marketing, both within the country and abroad.

Developing the Book Review Section in Library and Information Studies Journals: Some Observations Drawn from Personal Experiences

The paper is written from the author's experience as a reviews editor of an international journal, The International Journal of Information and Library Research. Experience indicates that the modest total of serious reviews achieved in this London-based journal (eight substantial reviews of some 800 words in each issue over two years) would be unlikely elsewhere. Advice for reviews editor s includes: attempt to match title to an appropriate reviewer; do not give in to non-response from potential reviewers and write too many yourself; do try to get reviews written by people in other co untries; give reviewers a serious deadline and follow up closer to that time; get your journal onto publishers' lists, and in return make certain that reviews of their books do appear, so as to retai n their good will.

Focus on International and Comparative Librarianship

Based on his experience of transferring the editorial address from the UK to Nigeria for periods of several years, the author notes several problems: poor communications in all forms posing problems in maintaining contact with contributors; getting copy to the established printer in the UK, and keeping to deadlines for production and distribution. Earlier deadlines and longer production periods for each issue have helped to overcome communication setbacks, although personal stress has increased. The personal contact with all the problems of journal production that are normal in most of Afri ca has brought about a greater understanding of the tenacity and endurance needed by most library science journal authors, editors and publishers in developing countries.