Welcome to Wrocław

September 22, 2017

“It is time for you, at this conference, to engage and explore,” said Donna Scheeder, president of the International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions (IFLA), to the crowd gathered for the Opening Session of the 2017 World Library and Information Congress (WLIC) on August 20. “I’m sure among this group is a future IFLA president somewhere.” Speakers seemed … Continue reading Welcome to Wrocław


The North York Central Library branch of Toronto Public Library hosted a Syrian newcomers event to welcome its newest patrons. Photo: Toronto Public Library.

Project Welcome

September 22, 2017

Since 1975 the United States has accepted more than 3 million refugees. Despite current restrictions, more than 45,000 arrived between October 2016 and June 2017. The American Library Association (ALA) recognizes America’s immigrants as strong and valuable members of the social fabric of this nation, and the Library Bill of Rights states that a person’s right … Continue reading Project Welcome


African librarians at a leadership training event in Mahé, Seychelles. Photo: Darren Hoerner.

PLA in Africa

September 22, 2017

PLA recognizes that a connected library field is a strong library field. By sharing effective practices and working together to address common issues, libraries can leverage their resources for exponential impact. PLA provides training for leaders to make these connections through the academy and other networking opportunities. All leadership activities are based on a leadership … Continue reading PLA in Africa


Joan Petit’s first-year information science graduate students at Jimma University in Ethiopia. Photo: Joan Petit.

An American Librarian Abroad

September 22, 2017

Over the past year, while on sabbatical from my position at Portland (Oreg.) State University Library, I had the privilege of serving as a Fulbright Scholar in the department of information science at Jimma University in Jimma, Ethiopia. I had contacted a few different Ethiopian universities hoping to garner an invitation to join their faculty, … Continue reading An American Librarian Abroad


The ALA tour group listens as Nancy Coradin (center) translates the narrative about the Biblioteca Nacional de Cuba José Martí in Havana. Photo: Barbara Conaty.

ALA in Cuba

September 22, 2017

Cuba’s Ministry of Culture administers the public library system, which includes Biblioteca Nacional de Cuba José Martí and about 300 provincial and municipal public libraries that serve a population of 11 million. Another 1,300 school libraries are administered by the Ministry of Education. The group convened at the host library: the Biblioteca Pública Rubén Martínez … Continue reading ALA in Cuba


Denice Adkins (left) and Elizabeth Jean Brumfield (far right) at an LIS curriculum committee meeting at the University of Missouri in Columbia.

Changing Perspectives through Exchange

September 22, 2017

A mentor and mentee case study IFLA IMLS fellow Elizabeth Jean Brumfield, distance services librarian at Prairie View (Tex.) A&M University (PVAMU), has been mentored by Denice Adkins, associate professor at University of Missouri’s School of Information Science and Learning Technologies. Through their interactions, they were able to view librarianship from each other’s perspective. Adkins’s … Continue reading Changing Perspectives through Exchange


ALA Presidential Citations

September 22, 2017

The winners are: University of Alberta’s Augustana Campus Library and the city of Camrose, Alberta, Canada Bibliotheekservice Fryslân in the Netherlands Wellington County Library in Ontario, Canada The recipients were selected by a team of IRRT members in consultation with then–ALA President Julie B. Todaro, who recognized them at the 2017 ALA Annual Conference and … Continue reading ALA Presidential Citations


The Networking Library Lounge at the Sharjah International Book Fair/American Library Association Library Conference.

Networking and Learning in the Middle East

September 22, 2017

Then–ALA President Julie B. Todaro opened the conference with an update on ALA’s Libraries Transform campaign, stressing library transformation as essential to the communities libraries serve. Miguel Figueroa, director of the ALA Center for the Future of Libraries, provided the second day’s keynote on the importance of exploring trends and signals around us and how … Continue reading Networking and Learning in the Middle East


A scrimmage day featuring the Special Olympics Burlington team—and open to people of all abilities—was held in May. Photo: Special Olympics Burlington.

Acceptance and Inclusion

September 22, 2017

After the 2016 US presidential election, BPL heard from teens who were frightened, shaken, and without the agency to act. For many who were from a diverse culture or ethnicity, a member of the LGBTQ+ community, or simply had inclusive worldviews, this change in leadership created a deep sense of fear for themselves and those … Continue reading Acceptance and Inclusion



2017 Library Design Showcase

2017 Library Design Showcase

September 1, 2017

Welcome to the 2017 Library Design Showcase, American Libraries’ annual celebration of new and renovated libraries. These are shining examples of innovative architectural feats that address user needs in unique, interesting, and effective ways. Renovations and expansions dominated this year, showing that libraries are holding on to and breathing new life into spaces already cherished … Continue reading 2017 Library Design Showcase


National Library of Latvia, Riga Architect: Gunnar Birkerts Architects, Gelzis-Smits/Arhetips Photo: David Oldham

AIA/ALA Library Building Awards

September 1, 2017

The following libraries are winners of the 2017 Library Building Awards, sponsored by the American Institute of Architects and the American Library Association’s Library Leadership and Management Association. The biennial award recognizes the best in library architecture and design and is open to any architect licensed in the United States. Projects may be located anywhere … Continue reading AIA/ALA Library Building Awards