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68th IFLA Conference Logo  

68th IFLA Council and General Conference

Libraries for Life: Democracy, Diversity, Delivery

August 18th - 24th 2002, Glasgow, Scotland











Theme & Sub-theme


Libraries for life: democracy, diversity, delivery

Free access to information and the products of the imagination has always been recognised as the foundation for an inclusive society, a society that is based on shared values and open to change.

Librarians have always played a major role in collecting and transmitting new ideas and better knowledge. Fundamental changes in the way information is used are now making an impact on every aspect of economic, educational and social activity.

In the knowledge economy that is emerging as a result of the rapid introduction of enhanced information and communications technologies, learning and a command of knowledge have become the key factors in individual, organisational and national success. Highly skilled people are needed to ensure that libraries can support effective learning and deliver efficient information services.


Building on the past - investing in the future

Libraries have played a key role in preserving and making available the literary heritage and inspiration of nations. The professionalism of librarians has underpinned the international transmission of knowledge. Today, libraries and information services develop and provide increasingly sophisticated tools to help make information available globally. Information literacy is central not only to learning, but also to decision-making, evidence-based practice, and innovation transfer. Librarians begin to develop these skills by helping young people to recognize when information is needed and to have the ability to find, evaluate, and use it effectively. Then they help to support them in these activities throughout their lives. For the individual, community, organisation and policy-maker alike, the ability to handle complex information is a means of empowerment.

"Skills for the information age should in our view receive top priority"

(Scottish Executive, Digital Scotland Task Force Report, May 2000)

The sub-theme will provide a common thread throughout the open part of the IFLA 2002 programme, particularly the plenary sessions (opening ceremony, guest lectures, FAIFE lecture, CLM lecture, and closing ceremony) and, wherever possible, sessions organised by Sections, Round Tables and Satellite Meetings.

The Scottish Executive recognises the importance of IFLA's contribution to the development of library and information services and recognises the importance of libraries to Scotland. I warmly welcome IFLA's return to Scotland, where it was founded, to celebrate its 75th anniversary. I hope to welcome you to Glasgow in 2002.

(Jack McConnell, 1st Minister)


Latest Revision: April 26, 2002   Copyright ©
International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions