IAALD shakes itself up
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CTA. 2000. IAALD shakes itself up. Spore 87. CTA, Wageningen, The Netherlands.
Permanent link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/10568/46795
Internet URL: http://spore.cta.int/images/stories/pdf/old/spore87.pdf
the Tenth IAALD World Congress held in Dakar, Senegal, in late January 2000
The once-tame community of agricultural librarians and documentalists, through its international association IAALD, has been changing itself for several years, helping its members to adjust to the needs of their users. Where they used to talk shyly of indexing terms and abstracting components , and of dissemination as if it were a dirty word, they now use up-beat statements like 'Technology has changed the way we do business'. This is all good news for agricultural practitioners, who stand to gain from having direct access to responsive information professionals , as former librarians call themselves today. Feedback from the field and clients was high on the agenda of the Tenth IAALD World Congress held in Dakar, Senegal, in late January 2000, with support from CABI, CSE Dakar, InfoDev Washington and CTA. Delegates were berated, in a positive way, by a representative of FENOP, a farmers organisation in Burkina Faso, who discussed the non-availability of the type of information that farmers need. Another notion introduced to the Congress was that information services users should provide intensive training to information professionals the equivalent of farmers providing training to extension workers! The major consensus of the 85 participants was that in promoting worldwide food security 'the information professional in the new millennium needs to be a planner'. To be able to plan, the professional needs to know users better, and to implement a plan means managing change. 'To know where we are going', they concluded, 'we have to know where we have been', which means assessing impact. It sounds like they have something to tell, maybe even something to sell. To know more: M Bellamy, IAALD Secretariat, c/o CABI Wallingford Oxfordshire OX10 8DE, UK Fax: +44 1491 833 508 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: www.iaaldcee.hu/dakar2000/index.html