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63rd IFLA General Conference - Conference Programme and Proceedings - August 31- September 5, 1997

Annual Report of the IFLA Programme for Universal Availability of Publications (UAP) and Office for International Lending (OIL)

Graham P Cornish
Programme Director



Last year’s annual report began with the words “As always, this has been a busy year for UAP. Involvement in project work has continued to increase; the voucher scheme goes from strength to strength and partnerships with other organisations continue to flourish.” There is no reason to change that introduction this year!

Interlending news

One of the Programme’s most important publications over the years has been the Guide to Centres of interlending & Copying . As reported last year, it has been decided to split the Guide into two parts: one for lending and one for copying, the latter to include centres and commercial document suppliers. The first volume, a Guide to Centres of International Lending , was published in late 1995 and the Guide to Centres of International Document Delivery , which includes commercial document suppliers as well as libraries, appeared at the end of 1996 on schedule.


Projects continue to be funded by outside organisations and we are constantly looking for other organisations with which to work.


The first two years of the The IFLA Voucher Scheme were considered to be a pilot phase, in which we would monitor its development, make changes to any part of it which did not work smoothly and make recommendations on its future. Those first years came to an end in December 1996, and we are delighted to announce that the Voucher Scheme is here to stay. The number of participating libraries has increased gradually and steadily, and we now have over 150 listed. It is likely that very many more libraries have also begun to use the IFLA Vouchers to help pay for their interlibrary transactions without actually informing us of their participation, so that the true number of users is much larger. The Scheme has achieved its aim of becoming an easy, effective and relatively cheap way to pay for interlibrary transactions between different countries.

We are particularly pleased to see that a number of libraries in eastern Europe and less developed countries have also been able to use the Vouchers, as one of the aims behind the Scheme was to increase availability of publications to all libraries and not just the richest. In particular, a grant from the Soros Foundation Open Society Institute has allowed libraries in Bulgaria to receive an enormous number of IFLA Vouchers which will most certainly help them to pay for interlibrary loan transactions.


Progress on this new World Directory of Union Catalogues has been slow this year. Although a test site has been created on Iflanet, this is not yet live, as the data from the questionnaires still has to be converted into meaningful information. This joint project with the IFLA Section on Serial Publications, Section on Bibliography, Section on Document Delivery & Interlending and the ISBN and ISSN International Centres will include all current national or international union catalogues, and will provide information on holdings, access and availability of the listed material.


This last year has seen the development of a major new initiative which aims to help libraries find a twinning partner through which library staff can develop their professional outlook, exchange ideas on general library practice, increase cultural awareness and possibly set up exchange of library material and interlibrary loan systems.

Excellent guidelines on library twinning have already been produced by Unesco, but there has not really been a focal point for those libraries which need help to find a suitable partner. Based on a twinning database, this service aims to do just that: libraries seeking a twinning partner are asked to complete a questionnaire which will provide information about their own library and the type of library being sought. The Twinning Database is then used to identify a suitable matching library and contact details are sent to each partner. The role of the IFLA Twinning Database stops there, and libraries must take responsibility for contacting each other to establish the relationship, and to develop it into a fully effective twinning partnership.


The MURIEL (Multimedia Education System for Librarians Introducing Remote Interactive Processing of Electronic Documents) Project, which should have ended in December 1996, was frozen early in the year. However, some work still continued including Margaret Barwick giving a paper about it at the Ed-Media conference in Boston, USA, in June 1996. The paper was published in the proceedings of the conference. The project recommenced in November 1996 with 2 replacement partners. Different software from a different partner will now be used to enable courseware about librarianship to be inserted into the system. ISDN (Integrated Services Digital Network) and Local Area Networks (LANS) will be used to access the information. Courseware being developed is about Library ethics and Libraries and the Internet . MURIEL will be tested in international field trials. After the project ends, in October 1997, it is envisaged that the software developed will be available for purchase by interested parties.


The COPEARMS (Co-ordinating Project for Electronic Authors’ Right Management System) is now nearly half-way through its life. The COPEARMS consortium, of which the IFLA UAP Programme is a partner, is working with other European Commission co-financed projects in the intellectual property rights (IPR) area to encourage the development of interoperable IPR electronic copyright management systems (ECMS). Whilst systems are being developed in isolation effectiveness is lost due to barriers caused by different systems not being able to talk to each other. Without effective ECMS, the potential of electronically stored information to increase access will not be fully realised.

A major part of the work of the IFLA UAP Programme in the project is the organisation of a series of special interest group meetings and workshops throughout Europe. The UAP programme would be interested to hear from anyone working in the IPR ECMS field (particular in the standards or technical fields) who would be interested in joining a special interest group.

So far Special Interest Group Meetings have been held in London, Barcelona and Florence. Discussion are under way concerning a proposed joint venture in Denmark. There will be an International Electronic Copyright Management Systems conference in London at the end of 1997 which will deal with all aspect of ECMS development.


The COPEARMS Project will be working closely with the IMPRIMATUR (Intellectual Multimedia Property Rights Model and Terminology for Universal Reference) project which is also co-financed by the European Commission. The IFLA Office for UAP are part of the COPEARMS /IMPRIMATUR Joint Liaison Committee, and are also involved in the IMPRIMATUR project as The British Library Copyright Office. A major development has been the approach by the IMPRIMATUR Project Management Board to the IFLA Publishers Liaison Committee (see below) to organise a conference on “fairdealing/use” (in other words the exceptions to the owners’ exercise of copyright). This is being planned for Budapest in October.

Copyright in Transmitted Electronic Documents (CITED)

Although this Project is now over interest in it lives on. The work completed in the CITED Project has formed the basis for other projects including COPICAT and COPYSMART, both of which have involved the British Library Copyright Office. COPICAT (Copyright Ownership Protection in Computer Assisted Training) ended in late 1996 but has provided the basis for a framework which will serve to support commerce, rights, integrity protection and traceability. OSPREY (Open Structure for Protecting Rights Electronically) will act as a clearing house, providing a range of solutions to help organisations reduce development costs and assist in the adoption of common standards.


The COPYSMART project aims to offer a prototype electronic copyright management system, which will monitor usage and ensure royalty payments are made where due. Although this work is being carried out as British Library, the project has major implications for UAP.

Conferences and meetings


Participation in conferences of different kinds is still seen as a major part of the UAP work. This year staff have made presentations at a number of meetings including an CRIMEA ‘96; Future of Electornic Publishing (hosted by Unsco in Paris), National Preservation Conference (York), National Acquisitons Group conference (Keele), Library Technology conference (Paris), ED-MEDIA (Boston,USA) and the Programme Director carried out a teaching tour of Turkey in April.

The Office had a heavy programme during the Beijing conference and participated in the Workshop on document delivery, the Open Forum, the work of the Standing committee for Document Delivery & Interlending, the Co-ordinating Board for Division V and maintained a fairly constant presence during the many poster sessions.

Conference planning

Considerable effort was devoted during the year to organising the conference on the Role of Libraries in Economic Growth to be held in Ljubljana in April 1997 and the 5th. Interlending & Document Supply International Confeence to be held in Århus in August 1997 just before the main IFLA General Conference.


The Share the Vision project, to improve public library services for visually impaired people in the UK, has now become a limited company and registered as a charity. The Programme Director is one of late Trustees. This project is also linked to project TESTLAB which aims to design a workstation for visually impaired people. Funded by the European Union, it also has plans for a National Union Catalogue of Alternative Formats and a Pilot Interlending Project (PIP) for these materials. Such a catalogue has already been established in the UK.

The Office has continues to play an active role in the ‘Opportunities in Europe Group’, a group of library and information professionals seeking to participate in the development of library and information services throughout Europe. Graham Cornish is Secretary of the Group and Judy Watkins is Treasurer.

The Office is still a member of the Information for Development Co-ordinating Committee (IDCC).

Representation still continues on various copyright committees, particularly in the UK, and a careful watch is kept on legal trends which may limit availability and access.

The ECUP (European Copyright Users Platform) which is being sponsored by the European Commission through EBLIDA (European Bureau for Library, Information and Documentation Associations) is now well in its second phase and and a further project, called TECUP is planned to pilot some of the ideas behind the ECUP Matrix on electronic copyright and libraries. EBLIDA and ECUP will be helping to sponsor the conference on fair use in Budapest mentioned earlier.


The UAP Newsletter can be received electronically. Contact the general address at the end of this report. It is also published twice a year in paper form.

The Proceedings of the 4th Interlending and Document Supply International Conference held in Calgary in June 1995 are available from the IFLA UAP Office price £15.

Copyright Issues in Libraries: Global Concerns, Local Solutions , contains the papers presented at the Tianjin pre-conference seminar on copyright and those presented at the conference session of the Section on Document Delivery and Interlending. Copies are available from the IFLA Office for UAP price £5.00.

Charging for document delivery and interlending consists of the papers from the one-day Workshop on Charging which was held by the IFLA Section on Document Delivery and Interlending at the IFLA General Conference in Beijing last year. Price £5.

National Libraries of the World: an address list is updated regularly and is available free of charge. It can be accessed through the Programme’ web-site at the National Library of Canada

The Guide to Centres of International Document Delivery is now available from the Office.

A complete list of publications is available from the Office on request.

The Office has also continued to publish semi-annual reviews and bibliographies in Interlending and Document Supply . It has also continued to compile the Miscellany section of the journal. This contract funds one of the part-time posts in the Office.

Staff have also contributed a number of articles to professional journals in many countries on UAP, copyright law, electronic management systems, payment mechanisms and document delivery generally. A review of the year’s literature on national libraries has been written for Librarianship and Information Work Worldwide .