Meetings of the eIFL General Assembly took place on June 25 – 28 at the National Library of Belarus.
The events gathered delegates from 50 countries – heads and specialists of national library consortiums from Central, Eastern and South-East Europe, Africa, the Middle East and South-East Asia, and also representatives of the major world aggregators of electronic information resources.
Director of the National Library of Belarus and Head of the Belarusian Council of Libraries for Information Interaction R.S. Motulsky delivered a welcoming speech at the opening ceremony of the Assembly.
The questions of overcoming of obstacles in using electronic resources; the potentials of integrated access to electronic information resources, and also the issues of copyright in the context of international cooperation between libraries were considered at the meetings of the Assembly.
Participants of the Assembly familiarized themselves with the eIFL’s achievements for the last year and discussed the future prospects.
On the first day of meetings (26 June) Ausra Vaskeviciene, head of administration and database project manager of Lithuanian Research Library Consortium (employee of M. Mazvydas National Library of Lithuania) delivered a report on the questions of advancement of information level of electronic resources users.
Participants of the Assembly paid a particular attention to the report on the development of Wikipedia, cooperation between the eIFL and Wikipedia community and its possible participation in creation of libraries delivered by Liam Wyatt, the representative of Wikimedia Fund.
A special session under the chairmanship of Simon Ball, the head of EIFL-FOSS program, was dedicated to use of free software and open code programs for search and access to electronic resources.
Besides, reports concerning cooperation between the eIFL and the World Intellectual Property Organization and raising the questions of the development of open access electronic resources were delivered at the Assembly.
On 28 June, there were round tables during which the questions of overcoming of obstacles in using electronic resources, the questions of copyright in the context of librarys’ activities and other urgent issues of the library community were considered.
Within the frameworks of the Assembly meetings, there was an exhibition at which major publishing houses and aggregators of information resources presented their products and services: Burgundy Information Services Ltd; Cambridge University Press; EBRARY; Emerald Group Publishing Limited; GALE/Cengage; EBSCO; Institute of Physics Publishing; JSTOR; Nature Publishing Group; OECD; Oxford University Press; Royal Society Publishing; Sage Publications Ltd; Taylor & Francis; Wiley – Blackwell.
Representatives of national library consortiums had an opportunity to negotiate contracts for information resources delivery.
All participants of the Assembly unanimously noted high professional level of the event and the excellent organization of works.