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66th IFLA Council and General

Jerusalem, Israel, 13-18 August


Code Number: 127-89-E
Division Number: 0
Professional Group: IFLA Executive Board Advisory Group
Joint Meeting with:
Meeting Number: 89
Simultaneous Interpretation: Yes

IFLA Advisory Group on division 8

Marjorie E. Bloss (USA), Chair
Peter Hegedus (Hungary)
Derek Law (Scotland, UK)
Sissel Nilsen (Norway)
Kay Raseroka (Botswana)
Adolfo Rodriguez (Mexico)
Jianzhong Wu (China)



At the IFLA Conference in Bangkok (1999), the Working Group on the Revision of IFLA's Statutes and Rules of Procedure presented a paper containing 13 recommendations. One in particular, number 12, recommended the dissolution of Division 8. The basis of the Working Group's recommendation was to "mainstream" Division 8 activities with the other seven divisions and thus recommended dissolving this division. This recommendation met with strong opposition from Council members. The result was that all recommendations except for this one were approved by Council and subsequently became the basis for the revision of IFLA's Statutes.

Following the IFLA Conference, the Executive Board established an Advisory Group to examine the issues that were raised concerning Division 8. The Advisory Group has worked through e-mail since January 2000 and is presenting this document for discussion by the IFLA Council at its meeting in Jerusalem. To that end, the discussion paper includes the following topics:

  • Basic Assumptions of the Advisory Group
  • Background information on the creation of Division 8, ALP, and the Regional Offices;
  • Examination of the current structure, to include funding;
  • Issues specific to Division 8;
  • Evaluation of the current structure; and
  • Recommendations and next steps.

Of the seven recommendations made by the Advisory Group, three in particular stand out. They include that:

  • Division 8 should not be dissolved at this time;
  • The members of Division 8, the Regional Offices, ALP and selected representatives (e.g., past PB chairpersons and division officers who have collaborated with Regional Standing Committees) review, redefine and propose the regional organizational structure that will be most effective. To this end, the Advisory Group urges that this discussion become a major topic at the regional groups' upcoming meeting in Uppsala in October 2000;
  • Funding for Division 8 and the Regional Offices be examined and evaluated with an emphasis placed on consolidating funds, eliminating duplication of effort wherever possible, and achieving a financial balance between the needs of the regional groups and IFLA's Divisions 1-7, Core Programmes, etc..



At the IFLA Conference in Bangkok (1999), the Working Group on the Revision of IFLA's Statutes and Rules of Procedure presented a paper containing 13 recommendations. One in particular, number 12, recommended the dissolution of Division 8. The basis of the Working Group's recommendation was to "mainstream" Division 8 activities with the other seven divisions thus making this division unnecessary. This recommendation met with strong opposition from Council members. The result was that all recommendations except for this one were approved by Council and subsequently became the basis for the revision of IFLA's Statutes.

Following the IFLA Conference, the Executive Board established an Advisory Group to examine the issues that were raised concerning Division 8. The members of the Advisory Group include:

    Marjorie E. Bloss (USA), Chair
    Peter Hegedus (Hungary)
    Derek Law (Scotland, UK)
    Sissel Nilsen (Norway)
    Kay Raseroka (Botswana)
    Adolfo Rodriguez (Mexico)
    Jianzhong Wu (China)

In addition, Sally McCallum (USA) and Warren Horton (Australia) serve as resource persons.

Early on in its deliberations, the Advisory Group determined that what was most important was to develop a structure in which people can participate regardless of their geographic location. We want to reduce the barriers to such participation, recognizing that we can all learn from each other. We recognize the need and the value of IFLA's regional structure while, at the same time, enabling people in those regions to participate in the overall professional programmes of IFLA. As a result, the Advisory Group determined that what would be most productive would be first to examine what already exists. Once that is done, we can assess what works and what does not. From there, we can then make recommendations building on the strengths, reducing the weaknesses, and developing new mechanisms. There is no sense in establishing a course of action if the people whom it most affects do not believe in it. Consequently, dissolving Division 8 will not be among the recommendations of this Advisory Group.

As did the Working Group on the Revision of IFLA's Statutes and Rules of Procedure, this Advisory Group also recognizes that we live in a changing world. Ultimately, we acknowledge the need to re-examine and revisit IFLA's structure with regard to Division 8, the Regional Centers, and ALP on an ongoing basis and make changes in order to maintain a vital organization and structure sensitive to the needs of its members.

The Advisory Group recommends empowering the members of Division 8, the Regional Offices, ALP and representatives selected (e.g., past PB chairpersons and division officers who have collaborated with Regional Standing Committees, Core Programme Officers) to review, redefine and propose the Division 8 organizational structure that will be most effective. People within the Division 8 regions are the ones most familiar with their needs and are the ones who can best identify them and make the appropriate recommendations. This should not be construed as a lack of interest on IFLA's part. Instead, it is seen as giving the people most active in Division 8 the opportunity to define the organizational structure that will be the most effective for their active participation in IFLA. Furthermore, the Advisory Group is fully aware of the fact that what works effectively can vary from region to region depending on need and that each region may decide to focus on different activities within a general framework.



IFLA's involvement with the regional groups began in 1971, when the Working Group for Developing Countries was established. The Working Group was intended to provide a means for developing country professionals to have a voice in IFLA activities, and to act as a conduit for IFLA programmes of interest or benefit to developing countries. This was particularly important at a time when IFLA Conferences were always held in Europe and North America. In 1975 the Executive Board agreed to replace the Working Group with three regional groups for Africa, Latin America and the Caribbean and Asia respectively. In 1976 the three groups were grouped together within the Division for Regional Activities.

In 1984 regional representatives met to restructure the Regional Sections so that they could perform more effectively. The result of these discussions was a document entitled "The Twenty-five Essential Points." The group recommended a sub-regional structure for each Section and a ten-member Standing Committee comprising equal numbers of members representing each sub-region. It proposed the establishment of Regional Offices with Regional Managers, and set out the agreed membership of the sections and rules for participation in the Regional Standing Committees and Divisional Coordinating Board.

The sub-regional structure was set out as follows:

    Asia and Oceania
      Southeast Asia
      South Asia
      Central and East Asia
      Arabic-speaking countries of the region

    (As of May 2000, there are 298 members living in the region and 316 members registered for the Regional Section.)


      Africa north of the Sahara
      West Francophone Africa
      West Anglophone Africa
      Central Francophone Africa
      East Anglophone Africa
      Arabic-speaking countries of North Africa

    (As of May 2000, there are 116 members living in the region and 134 members registered for the Regional Section.)

    Latin America and the Caribbean

      Cono del Sur ('Consur') countries
      Andean countries
      Caribbean countries
      Central and North American countries

    (As of May 2000, there are 129 members living in the region and 149 members registered for the Regional Section.)

The IFLA Executive Board decided to consolidate its interest and programmes in the regional groups as a Core Programme, to be known as the Advancement of Librarianship in the Third World (ALP). ALP's activities were first incorporated into the 1986-1991 Medium-Term Programme. With coordination from IFLA Headquarters, there was an early attempt to implement ALP programmes through the structure of Regional Standing Committees and Regional Offices. This approach was unsuccessful for a variety of reasons relating to human resources that have the capacity to focus on project proposals as sources of finance, limited budgets, and a lack of coordination in the regions and at the Headquarters. It was only when a permanent secretariat for the ALP Core Programme was established in 1990 at Uppsala University in Sweden and new sources of funding obtained from the Scandinavian aid agencies that the ALP Programmes began to make significant progress. In doing so it answered some criticism of the effectiveness of its role to that date.

In 1997, in an attempt to address the problems of communication and coordination within the regions, the Executive Board reviewed a proposal to amend IFLA's Rules of Procedure in such a way that the Regional Standing Committees would be treated the same as the non-regional Standing Committees. These proposals had principally to do with the composition of the Regional Standing Committees (RSC), and suggested that the RSC membership be expanded to include twenty members, rather than ten, so as to broaden the base of contribution and give opportunities to new members.

While ALP, Division 8, and the Regional Offices are the initial groups one thinks when discussing activities, projects, and concerns in the regions, many other IFLA groups such as the other Core Programmes and Standing Committees have given substantial support to the regional groups. The Advisory Group acknowledges all those who have worked in partnership with Regional Sections on mutually agreed programmes.



The administrative functioning of the three Regional Sections over the last ten years has been assisted by the steps IFLA has taken to support the Division. These include the establishment of the Regional Offices, the permanent positions of the Regional Managers, and the allocation of budgets to enable Standing Committees to meet outside the Conference. The Regional Sections are no different from IFLA's other professional groups in that many successful activities have been initiated and carried out as a result of strong individual vision and leadership. Successful partnerships have been effective, for example between Section officers and the Regional Offices, and between Section officers and ALP Core Programme staff, not to mention partnerships between Division 8 and other Core Programmes and Divisions 1-7.

IFLA HQ policy seeks to promote and find ways to extend IFLA's professional influence to have an impact on professional activities in all countries of Division 8, encourages a greater involvement of regional membership, and provides opportunities for new members to take part in the work of the Regional Standing Committees. The question is how representative are the regional Standing Committees of the library professionals or IFLA membership in the countries of the regions? How successful has the current structure been? Are there other structures that could have been more effective?

The Regional Standing Committees hold annual meetings in their own regions. During recent years these meetings have been organized in conjunction with workshops or seminars to allow for the sharing of travel expenses and other costs. The Regional Standing Committees draw up policy guidelines for the development of programmes, within each region, and propose or approve projects. All projects come from the regions and go through the RSCs. ALP works closely with IFLA's Regional Offices and Standing Committees in the planning, development and execution of projects and activities. These groups should assess how the outcomes from these meetings might best aid the working relationship between them. In doing so, it would be useful for them to clearly define the roles, responsibilities and functions of the Regional Standing Committees, ALP, the Regional Offices, and the Coordinating Board for Division 8.

The nine members of the ALP Advisory Committee (the chairs and secretaries of the three Regional Sections and the IFLA Regional Office Managers) have met in Uppsala for about a week in 1994, 1996, and 1998. The next meeting planned is to be held in Uppsala in late October 2000. During these meetings, the Committee evaluates ongoing and completed projects, and plans the activities for the next two-year period.

3.1 Funding Support for ALP, Division 8, and the Regional Offices

Financial support for ALP, the RSCs and attendance at various meetings (such as the ALP Advisory Committee and the Professional Board) comes from a number of different sources. Consequently, it is difficult to calculate the total amount accurately.

Within the framework of IFLA's entire budget of USD 800,000, a little under 10% (USD 77,000) is allocated to Regional Offices, ALP, and Division 8. (The Regional Offices each currently receive USD 15,000 or 45,000 annually. ALP was allocated USD 27,500 from Core Programme funds for 2000. Division 8 is allocated USD 4,500. This does not include any IFLA "big project funding" or support that other Divisions or Sections may contribute.)

ALP and the Regional Offices all receive in kind support from their host institutions. Although the total monetary value for support is difficult to identify, it is significant. For example, ALP's budget for 1999 was USD 558,219 and SIDA (Swedish Informational Development Agency) provides approximately USD 6,000 (USD 18,000 total) to each Regional Office per year for their work. Finally, Division 8 can also take advantage of small and large project money and administrative funds allocated by the Professional Board, identical to Divisions 1-7. The Professional Board allocates project monies during its November/December meeting and then further reviews projects in March. Division 8 is represented at these meetings and therefore has a direct input in this process.

ALP serves as the administering agent for project funds for the Regional Offices. Included in its tasks can be identifying project sponsors, seeking funding, producing project reports, etc. Applications are sent to the IFLA office in the appropriate region. After that, they are sent to the Regional Advisory Committee to be appraised and evaluated. If a project is approved, ALP seeks funding for it if none has been previously identified. Local organizations or institutions, and the Regional Standing Committee then carry out projects. Thus, there are no ALP projects per se.
It is obvious that additional funds are required to carry out all desired activities. This is true not only in the regions but within IFLA and all libraries, their related organizations, associations, and institutions. An essential fiscal goal is, therefore, to ensure equitable programmatic financial support for all IFLA groups.

3.2 IFLA's Strengths with Regard to the Regional Groups

IFLA has made significant contributions to the countries comprising the regional groups, providing a stable structure for promoting its policy of stimulating the development of the profession worldwide. Since the 1980s, IFLA has held successful conferences in developing or Third World countries. Numerous topical meetings, conferences, and workshops dealing with specific subject expertise have been held in conjunction with the regional groups outside of the IFLA Conference. IFLA has been a visible force in these areas. IFLA has also demonstrated its concern with promoting library and information science in the regions by establishing a Core Programme specific to these concerns, ALP. In addition, Regional Offices for the ongoing support of librarianship have been established. IFLA has further extended its concern for the basic rights of availability of information to all by recently establishing the Committee on Free Access to Information and Freedom of Expression (FAIFE) and the Committee on Copyright and Other Legal Matters (CLM). As important as these committees are to IFLA as a whole, they are especially relevant to the regional groups. Finally, IFLA does not operate in isolation. It reaches out to other organizations having mutual interests, thus providing a network of support for its members.

3.3 IFLA's Weaknesses with Regard to the Regional Groups

Some of IFLA's strengths can also be perceived as its weaknesses. IFLA has often been identified as Western European and North American with regard to geography with a focus on associations, national and academic libraries. While it has given considerable attention to the countries forming the regional groups, these actions have sometimes been perceived as patronizing. Similarly, some have voiced concern that too much attention has been given to the regional groups. Clearly, any future actions must be taken with an attempt to balance support and resources for the improvement of the organization as a whole - a delicate task indeed.

There have been enormous economic, political and social changes in the world over the last decade. These changes have emphasized the difficulties and inadequacies in grouping the countries comprising IFLA's three regional groups. Obviously these "weaknesses" are beyond IFLA's control. It is important, however, for IFLA to acknowledge the need to re-examine how regional groups are defined and to redefine them within the IFLA structure where possible. This is especially true given the large geographic size of the regions and the relatively small number of IFLA members and participants from those regions. Ideally, there should be more regions covering smaller geographic areas. As always, financial implications come into play if increasing the number of regions is recommended. If such a recommendation is made, it must be viewed against the backdrop of IFLA's programmatic budget.



Over the years, a number of individuals have shared their perspectives concerning Division 8. The comments below reflect these views. These perspectives can be categorized into three major topics.

  • Situations unique to the Regional Groups
  • IFLA Structure
  • Funding

4.1 Situations Unique to the Regional Groups

4.1.1 Regional group members represent only a small percentage of the IFLA membership; therefore Regional Standing Committee officers are drawn from a very small number of participants. This is also true when it comes to recruiting people for Standing Committees within the regions. Furthermore, leadership within in the regional groups is uneven making it difficult to guarantee an equal voice in the region, let alone the Federation as a whole.

4.1.2 Often basic tools, taken for granted in other countries are not available within regional group countries. These can include poor communications infrastructure, weaknesses in professional organizations, insufficient technology.

4.1.3 In a number of regional group countries, there is a lack of knowledge and skills in large numbers of areas of Library and Information Service practice. New ideas and initiatives are lacking and as a consequence, mind-sets are conservative and require opening up. Part of this can easily be attributed to the fact that priorities are different within the regional groups.

4.1.4 Many committee members in Divisions 1-7 have a lack of knowledge about regional group activities. They do not often see reports of meetings or newsletters from these areas. Thus, the lack of understanding goes in both directions.

4.1.5 It has been pointed out many times that there is a mismatch between how IFLA has defined "regional groups" and the geo-political changes in recent years. This includes cultural perceptions and the increasing economic strength of some countries assigned to specific regional groups.

4.1.6 In addition to the geo-political changes and the large geographic areas comprising each regional group, numerous languages within a regional group comprise yet another barrier. As an example, in Division 8's Latin America and the Caribbean Section, there are four predominant languages: Spanish, Portuguese, English and French.

5. IFLA Structure

5.1 The exact relationship between ALP, the Regional Offices and the Regional Standing Committee members needs to be defined more clearly with regard to structure, funding and programmatic activities. While IFLA has a structure in place, it needs to be reviewed, clarified and very likely streamlined. This may include the ways in which funding for these groups is allocated and administered.

To that end, IFLA is often perceived as being bureaucratic. Making changes is viewed as difficult and cumbersome. One of the primary goals of the Working Group on the Revision of Statutes and Rules of Procedure was to improve IFLA's flexibility. This goal is also applicable when attempting to improve the inter-relationship between and among IFLA, ALP, Division 8 and the Regional Offices.

5.2 The Regional Offices need to be empowered through additional human resources devoted to IFLA issues. The goals of the Regional Offices need to be redefined so that developing associations within regions is a priority. This has been recognized as a very important base for strengthening professional interest and activities first in the regions, and then as potential new members in the IFLA community. As an example, IFLA's support on the unification of South African Library Associations can be pointed to as a success story due to IFLA's advocacy and excellent support. A stronger advocacy role is required for Division 8 members but it can be achieved only if all parties share information and a commitment to improve the state of the profession at local levels as well as international ones.

6. Funding

A description of IFLA funding for ALP, Division 8 and the Regional Offices was previously described in the section titled "Funding Support for ALP, Division 8, and the Regional Offices". This section described the sources of revenue and the approximate percentage of IFLA's budget supporting regional activities. As was stated, there are numerous pockets of funding that come to the regional groups, either directly through the IFLA budget, through grants generously provided by individuals or countries. Attempting to track the various funds can be problematic. Furthermore, a more effective way of distributing funds might come from aggregating them into a single budget line in as much as is possible. A suggestion for how to handle this might be for the funds to be centralized at IFLA Headquarters. In such a scenario, IFLA Headquarters and the IFLA Treasurer could assume responsibility for the disbursement and management of these funds in consultation with the regional group structure and the IFLA Executive and Professional Boards.



A number of Division 8 activities have evolved over the years. In some cases, the activities have become automatic so that little analysis is done regarding their effectiveness. As part of moving the programme forward, some assessment is needed in determining what works, what doesn't work, and what can be done to make the structure more effective. The following describes some of the categories that need to be examined.

7.1 Funding: There is need for holistic analysis of sources of funding for programmes operated by the Regional Standing Committees to facilitate activities. Funding for Division 8 comes from many sources as has been noted previously. Partially as a result of this, there is the perception that funding for the regional groups is inadequate. If funding could be brought together as much as possible and administered from a central source, determining the true funding for the regional groups can be done more easily and accurately.

7.2 Assessing the effectiveness of meetings and conferences: While topical meetings and conferences have been held in countries sponsored by Division 8, various Core Programmes, and Standing Committees, there is nothing that evaluates the benefits (both short-term and long-term) of those programmes. Some assessment needs to be done to try to determine the effectiveness of both the programmes themselves and the partnerships that were formed as a result of them. The greatest challenge is determining the continuity of partnerships and the sustained programmes on shared interests.

7.3 Perceptions of isolation: Concerns have previously been raised about the ghetto effect that is caused or potentially caused as a result of a division that focuses on geographical regions. The IFLA community looks to our colleagues in the regions to provide education and guidance so we can discuss these situations openly, objectively, and in a non-defensive manner. The IFLA community needs to have a better understanding of the issues and agendas underlying our perceptions. Only by doing so, can we develop strategies and tactics for enhancing professional growth at subregional and national levels based on a realistic assessment of RSC capabilities.



As was previously stated, the Advisory Committee is not recommending the dissolution of Division 8. Rather, its basic recommendation is for Division 8, the Regional Offices and ALP too assume a large part of the responsibility in identifying their needs and the most effective way to satisfy them within the IFLA environment. To that end, the Advisory Group is providing a compilation of recommendations from various sources. It hopes that Division 8, the Regional Offices, and ALP will examine these ideas along with their own stemming from their experience when identifying the changes that should be made. The Advisory Group also hopes that these groups feel free to draw on the knowledge and expertise within IFLA Headquarters and the Federation as a whole for implementing any changes.

The Advisory Group recommends the following.

Recommendation 1: At this time, Division 8 should not be dissolved. Instead, the Division, ALP, the Regional Offices and IFLA should work towards assisting development in the countries comprising the regional groups with regard to more active participation in IFLA, advice and activities for strengthening library and information associations, education, and professionalism.

Recommendation 2: Division 8 and its Sections, ALP, and the Regional Offices should assume a leadership role for identifying, defining and shaping the resulting structure. In doing so, they should evaluate the current organization involving IFLA, ALP, Division 8, the regions and sub-regions to determine what works effectively and what needs to be changed. In doing so, they should consider how they fit into the IFLA structure with regard to other divisions, committees, and Core Programmes.

NEXT STEPS: During its October meeting, it is suggested that ALP, the Regional Offices and the officers (Chairs and Secretaries) of Division 8 give high priority to discussions of the future structure and inter-relationships of these groups to each other and to IFLA as a whole. The intention is that specific recommendations would be identified which would strengthen the working relationships between Division 8 and the IFLA community.

Recommendation 3: As part of its consideration, Division 8 should examine the inter-relationship among and between IFLA, ALP, other Core Programmes, Division 8, the Regional Offices and IFLA Divisions 1-7 in terms of furthering communication and coordination of activities. In doing so, the following suggestions might be taken into consideration. Potentially, this could mean redefining who can be a member of Division 8.

  • The Regional Offices and Division 8 must assume greater responsibility in communicating their actions with the rest of the IFLA community. Mechanisms for doing so more effectively need to be addressed as part of this recommendation. Any participating librarian from Division 8 will need to accept the responsibility to communicate very widely in this new scenario, and to obtain views from a widely dispersed professional electorate with widely differing needs.

  • Several methods for better integration of Division 8 concerns with the rest of IFLA have been suggested. They include having liaisons appointed from the committees comprising Divisions 1-7 depending on need and interest for furthering cross-divisional knowledge, experiences and support. Another approach is to set aside a certain number of slots on Standing Committees of Divisions 1-7 for Division 8 members. It is hoped that Division 8, the Regional Offices and ALP take these suggestions into consideration when examining possible new structures.

  • Consider having ALP's activities become incorporated into IFLA HQ for better coordination.

Recommendation 4: Division 8, in coordination with ALP and the Regional Offices should review the geographic areas currently defined and make recommendations as to whether these definitions are still appropriate and if they are not should provide recommendations for how better to subdivide the regions. Furthermore, financial priorities from this group should be identified with regard to the allocation of funds for Regional Offices with regard to strengthening what already exists or creating new Regional Offices.

NEXT STEPS: The responsibility for defining these relationships should fall primarily to Division 8, the Regional Offices, and ALP in coordination with IFLA Headquarters and members of the Executive and Professional Boards. The upcoming post-IFLA meeting in Uppsala and future IFLA conferences should be used for this purpose. Some suggestions have already been made with regard to strengthening the Regional Offices, expanding the number of Regional Offices, increasing the number of Division 8 Standing Committee Members, etc.

Recommendation 5: IFLA funding for Division 8 and the Regional Offices should be examined and evaluated. Funding will always be at the heart of what can or cannot be done. As has been stated previously, fairness and balance with other IFLA programmes and activities must be taken into account.. Related recommendations include:

  • IFLA Headquarters and the IFLA Treasurer should attempt to consolidate funding for regional group activities (while acknowledging their separate sources) wherever possible. More centralized control over regional group funding should occur at IFLA Headquarters in greater consultation with the groups specifically affected by them as well as IFLA Headquarters, and the Executive and Professional Boards.

  • Revisiting the membership fee structure for developing country associations and institutions, and further develop possibilities for sponsorship of fees;

  • Increasing funding to Regional Standing Committees for mid-year meetings;

  • Strengthening the Regional Offices so they can be more active and effective in their regions. Establishing a mechanism for a realistic assessment of in-kind contributions made by Division 8. Any funding granted by IFLA/Core Programmes should be negotiated based on RSC contributions as a strategy for developing partnership agreements and commitments and accountability.

NEXT STEPS: IFLA Headquarters and the IFLA Treasurer could begin to aggregate the numerous funding sources for regional activities. An outcome of this process could include an evaluation of financial balance between the funds going to the Regional Standing Committee and the Regional Offices. Future decisions on disbursement and management of these funds will be closely tied to any recommendations for restructuring (see the next recommendation).

Recommendations for any restructuring will need to be examined from a financial and fiscally responsible perspective. Division 8, the regional groups, ALP will need to present funding requests for review by IFLA Headquarters, the IFLA Treasurer, and the Professional Board. Any reorganization will need to have additional costs identified with an evaluation of financial feasibility within IFLA budgetary constraints.

Recommendation 6: Broaden the membership base within the regional groups so that the level of participation in IFLA is stronger and there is a larger pool from which to elect officers. Suggestions include:

  • Establishing a membership development programme targeted to the needs of IFLA membership in developing countries. Such a programme would be aimed at giving IFLA members something for their money, as well as attracting new members, and it should be delivered either in-country or remotely, that is not made dependent on the capacity to attend conferences. The content could include information and instruction on the specific professional skills required to participate in IFLA's professional groups, such as writing funding proposals, conducting research and writing conference papers, giving oral presentations, organizing meetings, writing minutes. Some of these elements are present in existing programmes, such as the IFLA's officers' sessions and the Asia/Oceania's project proposal writing workshop.

  • Furthermore, a membership development programme should include programmes to strengthen library associations at national levels, and should facilitate continuity of programmes as part of tactics to achieve their long-term sustainability.

  • Instituting a more coordinated and regularly funded programme of library association development workshops, such as have been conducted by the Regional Sections and the RTMLA (Round Table for the Management of Library Associations).

  • Supporting Division 8 activities that are more visible and pronounced at sub-regional levels, and that reach more librarians through linking up with local library associations. Activities should primarily focus on locally identified needs.

  • Expanding the number of Standing Committee Members on Division 8 from 10 to 20 as is the case with other IFLA Standing Committees.

Recommendation 7: The structure of Division 8, ALP and the Regional Offices should continue to exist in their present form for a set period of time (e.g., 3 years) while they take these suggestions under advisement and define and prepare to implement any changes. Once the changes have been implemented, the Advisory Group recommends that an evaluation of the changes be made after a predetermined period in order to assess the structure and to determine if additional changes should be made.


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