Thing 16 talks about advocacy for libraries outside of the library world. Expanding the lobby group for libraries is a challenge in Germany as well.
CILIP as well as ALA provide a wide range of advocacy materials and resources, i.e. the Campaigning Toolkit. In the last few years, advocacy for libraries in Germany received an increasing emphasis by librarians’ professional associations in Germany. Projects and activities include (amongst others):
- Portal Bibliotheksleben: Bibliotheksleben is collecting positive news about libraries. Bibliothekssterben keeps records about library closings. Advocacy resources (Kampagne, materials).
- The DBV is pushing the passing of Bibliotheksgesetze that pledge communes, towns and cities to fund libraries. To this date, public libraries are a voluntary financial contribution of the communes, towns and cities in most German federal states.
- Treffpunkt Bibliothek – Information hat viele Gesichter – each year in the week following the Tag der Bibliotheken (Day of the Libraries) on October 24, libraries promote their activities and collections with events, readings and exhibitions accompanied by a state-wide advertising campaign.
- In 2011, the BID presented a position statement on media and information literacy “Medien- und Informationskompetenz – immer mit Bibliotheken und Informationseinrichtungen!” (pdf) to the Enquete-Kommission „Internet und digitale Gesellschaft“ of the Deutsche Bundestag, promoting the libraries’ role in teaching information literacy and proposing actions to improve the nations’ media and information skills.
- Die TIB – Zukunft mit MehrWert (pdf), a study quantifying the value of the Technische Informationsbibliothek Hannover.
Consider why it’s important to advocate for the section of library and information sector that you work for or want to work in.
Show and actively promote the competences that libraries’ staff offers beyond the print and electronic collections as well as working spaces.
What advocacy have you been involved?
Open Day to mark the library’s 350 anniversary (Tag der offenen Tür 2010). The library is planning a “Recherchetag” (search day) with various short and long presentations on plagiarism, electronic books, RefWorks etc. this year.
At my location, I am taking part in faculty meetings as well as student workshops.
Photo credit: Statue of Liberty, New York City.
(c) Sabine Rauchmann, September 2011.
Think more about: If you haven’t been involved in advocacy, reflect on what your skills are (or which you want to develop), what you’re most passionate about and think about what you might be able to do.