Volunteer: Library in Togo

8/29/14 – Community Library Volunteer in Kpalime, Togo

The volunteer project will support a community library in Kpalime which was established in the course of the summer 2005. The volunteer will work together with local teachers in order to create activities which will encourage the population to read and will teach them how to make researches on various subjects. Various activities can be organized in this regard: an introduction to the library; entertainment and scientific activities; awareness campaigns in schools to excite students and teachers about regularly using libraries; organizing games for children; organizing a reading contest with prizes; organizing cultural events (theater, storytelling, African night followed by dance ….)

Language: English

Duration of the project: 1 – 12 months. Volunteers are expected to arrive at the beginning of the month (from 1st to 5th of the month) because of the training week session for each project.

Accommodation: The volunteers will live with a host family which is an opportunity to learn about the local community, culture and language. Volunteers are expected to be sensitive to the local culture and make an effort to integrate into the community. So the most important qualities we are looking for are enthusiasm, flexibility and willingness to experience something completely new.

Find out more about this and other volunteer opportunities in Togo at: www.cadip.org/volunteering-in-togo.htm


News: Attend the Library 2.014 Worldwide Virtual Conference

8/29/14 –  The Library 2.014 Conference
Sponsored by the School of Information at San José State University, California, USA

The fourth annual global conversation about the future of libraries is scheduled for October 8-9, 2014. The conference will once again be held entirely online around the clock in multiple languages and time zones. Everyone is invited to participate in this FREE forum designed to foster collaboration and knowledge sharing among information professionals worldwide.

The conference is hosted by the Library 2.0 Network which is an organization dedicated to worldwide information sharing and discussion about the future of libraries.  They currently have over 19,000 members from 160 countries.
To be kept informed of the latest conference news and updates, please 
join the Library 2.0 network. You do not need to join this network to attend, but doing so will also allow you to correspond with the presenters and other members, and to comment on sessions and discussions.

Sarah P’s comments:  When I started international work in 1996 there were no organizations like this (the internet was in its infancy).  It’s really great to see the library schools promoting more international cooperation and reaching across borders.  I truly believe, having lived overseas for so long, that librarians are the diplomats of democracy and that the work of open information sharing is important for the development and equality of all.

Job: Information and Media Specialist

8/27/14 – Information and Media Specialist
KUSTAR (Khalifa University of Science, Technology, and Research), Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates (UAE)

About Khalifa University:  With campuses in Abu Dhabi and Sharjah, Khalifa University is dedicated to the advancement of learning through teaching and research and to the discovery and application of knowledge. It endeavours to be an internationally recognised research university, with a world class reputation for interdisciplinary teaching and research and a tradition of partnering with leading academic institutions from around the world.

About the Role:

The purpose of this position is to:

  • Provide high quality front-line customer service in the library
  • Assist students, faculty and staff with library resources and services
  • Facilitate effective and efficient library processes
  • Provide first level of service to users in library, on phone, on department email;
  • Assist library clientele with their queries and requests; make referrals to librarians as appropriate;
  • Conduct library orientations and tours, teach information literacy basics to students;
  • Manage all circulation functions including loans, overdues, recalls, holds, reserves, record loads, and record blocks;
  • Manage library collections including shelving, shifting, shelf-reading, inventory, deselection
  • Ensure that appropriate public service standards and behaviors are maintained. Advise patrons of library policies
  • Assure that PCs, copying/printing machines and other equipment are operating properly; coordinate with appropriate departments for repair, maintenance and supplies
  • Instruct students in use of equipment as needed, including copiers, projection systems, and PCs.
  • Maintain records and statistics of services, activities and traffic counts.
  • Produce promotional material and assist in setting up library displays, hosting events, maintain Facebook page
  • Process new library material including basic cataloging of Arabic material;
  • Assist in collection development functions including bibliographic checking for selection and verification of citations;
  • Assist with new enterprises as appropriate, e.g. GIS services, thesis processing for repository, etc.
  • Be proactive in seeing what needs to be done and acting on it;
  • Other tasks as assigned.

About The Person:

  • Bachelor’s degree or equivalent in relevant field
  • Library certification preferred
  • Some library training and/or experience
  • Must be proficient in MS Office applications;

Sarah P’s comments:  There are currently 3 librarian positions open with this University (see earlier posts as well). There is an abundance of universities in the UAE, some good, some not so good.  KUSTAR does have good reviews to date and I am including a link to an article which mentions them in their discussion of the pros and cons of working in the Middle East.  The article is from 2012 but the information is still accurate and the author shares some insights which you should be aware of if you are considering working in the region.

The Middle East Option  by William Roden, Inside Higher Ed, 2/8/12

News: Join the International Librarians Network

8/25/14 – International Librarians Network

This group has come to my attention recently and I have been following their blog.  They offer a potential way to gain some international exposure because their aim is to help librarians develop international networks.

Here is some brief info from their site, visit it for further information:

Participants in the program are matched with others outside their country, based on the information they provide to the program coordinators. Partnerships are made for a fixed term, and during this period the partnerships are supported by regular contact and discussion points led by the program coordinators. Supported partnerships have an end date, however it is our vision that participants would develop a widening network of ongoing, independent professional relationships.

The International Librarians Network is run by volunteers all around the world. Program coordinators match participants, support the partnerships, and manage the website. Country coordinators act as in-country contacts and support for participants, and promote the program within their country. Program participants share their experiences, opinions and ideas to create an international network of librarians.

Job: Manager @ IFLA Headquarters

8/22/14 –  Manager, Policy and Advocacy at IFLA Headquarters
The Hague, Netherlands

Under limited direction, the Manger, Policy and Advocacy will be responsible for managing and implementing IFLA’s policy and advocacy activities. This position plays a leadership and strategic role in the development of policy and advocacy in order to achieve IFLA’s strategic objectives. It also participates in shaping the strategic direction and policies of the organisation.

The position reports to the Deputy Secretary General. The position supervises other designated staff.  The position will require international travel and representation.

Key areas of Responsibility

  • Develop within our strategic directions new policy positions in support of advocacy activities; and maintain and revise existing positions as necessary; take a whole of organisational approach to implementation.
  • Communicate IFLA’s advocacy activities within the profession to relevant international and national bodies, and wider society
  • Maintain an awareness of emerging issues in the global information environment, and ensure IFLA’s advocacy strategy is relevant, flexible and capable of addressing new challenges
  • Manage, maintain and expand IFLA’s network of strategic partners relevant to IFLA’s advocacy objectives
  • Ensure IFLA is represented at appropriate forums and events in support of advocacy objectives, including through personal representation
  • Work with the IFLA Governing Board and IFLA professional units to develop and implement advocacy activities and achieve advocacy objectives
  • Work with IFLA professional units  to ensure that IFLA’s development programmes incorporate IFLA’s policy and advocacy work, and build on the results of these programmes to further develop policy and advocacy activities
  • Work with relevant staff to ensure visibility and adoption of policies across the IFLA membership.

Knowledge and Skills

  • Excellent knowledge of current and emerging issues within the global information environment that are relevant for libraries and their users;
  • Significant experience developing and communicating policy, preferably in an international context
  • Proven ability to engage in the global information policy sector, develop partnerships and networks, and represent the organisation in a variety of forums;
  • Analytical and planning ability, with demonstrated initiative and vision, and solutions-oriented approach; financial skills should include grant seeking and budgeting skills;
  • Good understanding of the role and functions of an international professional member-based organisation; demonstrated knowledge and capacity to apply IFLA’s purpose and values as set out in its Statutes.
  • Experience in developing and implementing successful international activities, in a strategic, consultative and inclusive way;
  • Good people management skills, and proven supervisory experience
  • Highly developed written and spoken communication skills in English and the ability to target style to different audiences. IFLA works in seven official languages so a good knowledge of at least one of IFLA’s working languages other than English is advantageous.
  • A commitment to participative management practices, workplace diversity and to working effectively within a team environment.

Salary: appr. € 51.000 per year depending on experience, excluding holiday and year-end allowances.

Position type: 36 hours per week, initial a 1-year contract.

How to apply

Applications should respond specifically to the requirements in this job description. Applications should be in English and consist of a covering letter, detailed curriculum vitae, and the names of two referees.

For further details, please contact:
Stuart Hamilton, Deputy Secretary General, email: stuart.hamilton@ifla.org

Please submit your application to:

Ina Dijkstra, HR Advisor, email: vacancies@ifla.org




News: Chance to attend Spanish International Book Fair

8/22/14 –  Celebrate the Guadalajara International Book Fair with ALA-FIL FREE PASS Program

The American Library Association and the Guadalajara International Book Fair (FIL) are partnering for the 14th year to provide support for ALA members to attend the 26th book fair from November 29-December 7Free passes will be awarded to 150 librarians who work in the area of Spanish-language acquisitions. The Free Pass program provides 3 nights hotel stay (6 nights in a shared room with a colleague), continental breakfast, book fair registration, and $100 toward the cost of airfare, courtesy of ALA. FIL offers an additional $100 to the first 100 applicants who submit airfare information.  Deadline for applications: September 1.

For more information: http://www.ala.org/offices/iro/awardsactivities/guadalajarabook

Program: Summer progam for foreign librarians to visit US (2015)

8/21/14 – Mortenson Center Associates Program 2015

Sarah P. comments:  If you know a non-US citizen librarian, this is a great opportunity to pass on to them.  I was excited when I first read about the Mortenson Center however discovered shortly after that US librarians can not participate (except perhaps by invitation?). I find that sad in this age of international cooperation and hope in the future they might find a way to invite ‘normal’ US librarians to participate rather than just ‘experts’.  I say this because my experience has been that the real collaboration is with colleagues who are doing similar work.


2015 Summer Associates Program:  May 28 – June 23, 2015


The Mortenson Center Associates Program continues in summer 2015 with a new theme, “Innovative, Engaged, and Responsive Libraries: A Professional Development Program for Library Leaders.” The program will offer library and information science professionals from outside the United States an opportunity to explore current issues and trends in the field and to engage with librarians on the cutting-edge.

Innovative, Engaged, and Responsive Libraries will engage participants in learning about novel and innovative practices and services in areas such as:

  • Leadership, Innovation, and Communication
  • Digital and Print Collections
  • Information Technology
  • Marketing and Advocacy
  • Professional Networking
  • Library and Community Assessment

Program Highlights

  • Seminars and workshops which provide an overview of current trends in the field. Library experts will be invited to share their perspectives, offer expertise, and foster conversations on the themes of communication and leadership.
  • Tours to a variety of libraries, including academic, public, and school libraries. We may also visit the American Library association headquarters in Chicago, Illinois, and other sites of interest.
  • Small group projects will allow Mortenson Associates to engage in program content and explore topics with greater depth.
  • Networking with dynamic group of international colleagues.
  • Each participant will receive a Certificate of Program Participation upon completion.
  • Scheduling to allow participants to attend the American Library Association (ALA) Annual Conference, if they wish. (Arrangements and registration for the conference must be made separately and are not included in program costs.) This year’s ALA Annual Conference will be June 25 – 30, 2015 in San Francisco, California.

Applications for the 2015 Associates Program are due on December 1, 2014.

The application form must be completed in English, and should be typewritten, if possible. If handwritten, it should be printed legibly. If additional pages are used, please write the question number and your name at the top of each additional page.


In addition to a completed application form, please submit the following:

  1. Curriculum Vitae

Please provide an up-to-date curriculum vitae in English which details your professional activities (i.e. professional and work experience, activities (affiliations, memberships, and conference participation), awards, honors, and publications).

  1. Letter of Recommendation

The Letter of Recommendation must be submitted in English. It should be written by a supervisor who is familiar with you and your work, and can evaluate your ability to participate in the Mortenson Center Associates Program. Family members are not eligible to write a Letter of Recommendation. The Letter must have an original signature.

  1. Copy of Passport Identification Pages

Please send a copy or scan of your passport identification pages in PDF format.

Additional Application Information

  • All materials must be submitted in English.
  • The Mortenson Center reserves the right to verify all information given in the application.
  • Participants must be prepared to work as team members with other Mortenson Center program participants and to participate as required by the program.
  • Associates will not be permitted to join the program late or depart early.

Send complete applications to:

Mortenson Center for International Library Programs
University of Illinois Library at Urbana-Champaign
142 Undergraduate Library, MC-522
1402 W. Gregory Drive
Urbana, Illinois 61801 USA
Telephone: (217) 333-0031
Fax: (217) 265-0990
Email: mortenson@illinois.edu

For an application, cost estimate, or more information about the 2015 program, please visit the Mortenson Center website: http://www.library.illinois.edu/mortenson/associates/

For comments about past programs, please visit:


Job: Information Literacy Coordinator

8/21/14 –  Information Literacy Coordinator
Zayed University, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates (UAE)

Zayed University’s Library and Learning Commons seeks an Information Literacy Coordinator for our Abu Dhabi campus. The successful candidate will collaborate with the Information Literacy Coordinator at our Dubai campus to lead and strengthen information literacy programming efforts on campus.

Zayed University prepares graduates to contribute to building the nation, offering internationally accredited programs of study and a commitment to excellent and innovative teaching and learning practices. The University’s benefits package includes a competitive, income tax-free salary in the United Arab Emirates, housing allowance, and annual vacation ticket. The U.A.E. is a safe and stable nation with a high standard of living, excellent beaches and lovely camels.

Sarah P’s comments:  Lovely camels?  You have to like an ad with a nice sense of humor.  Zayed University enjoys a reputation as one of the better national universities to work for.  Unfortunately they suffer from disorganization which is evident here where the job is not listed on their website even though this is where you need to apply!  It probably will appear soon however if you are interested in this position I would write the person listed in the IFLA post and politely ask for details.

Job: Assistant Librarian

8/21/14 – Assistant Librarian
Khalifa Univerist of Science, Technology, and Research (KUSTAR)
Abu Dhabi, UAE

About Khalifa University:  With campuses in Abu Dhabi and Sharjah, Khalifa University is dedicated to the advancement of learning through teaching and research and to the discovery and application of knowledge. It endeavours to be an internationally recognised research university, with a world class reputation for interdisciplinary teaching and research and a tradition of partnering with leading academic institutions from around the world.

About the Role:  This position is responsible for managing and maintaining the library’s Makerspace and for assisting faculty and students in using its equipment and software. The position also assists in implementing and maintaining library systems and software such as Millennium and the Khalifa Repository.

About The Person:  Master of Science in Library and Information Science from an ALA-accredited institution or Masters degree in computer science or engineering or Masters degree in Media Technology.
Relevant certifications preferred.
Minimum two years experience as problem-solving geek required, preferably in academic libraries.
Experience with the Makerspace equipment and software preferred.
Experience in sci/tech libraries preferred.


Sarah P’s comments:  There is an abundance of universities in the UAE, some good, some not so good.  KUSTAR does have good reviews to date and I am including a link to an article which mentions them in their discussion of the pros and cons of working in the Middle East.  The article is from 2012 but the information is still accurate and the author shares some insights which you should be aware of if you are considering working in the region.

The Middle East Option  by William Roden, Inside Higher Ed, 2/8/12