უცხოეთის ბიბლიოთეკების ამბები

Webinar: Enhancing your strengths through coaching

IFLA - სამ, 30/04/2019 - 23:18

In this webinar, the role of coaching will be explored in order to highlight its value for developing library and information professionals for the future.

Moderator:
Ewa Stenberg, Sweden

Speakers:
Catharina Isberg, Sweden
Barbara Wennheden, Sweden
Bergita Shannon, Australia

05:00 PT / 07:00 CT (Chicago) / 08:00 EDT (New York) / 14:00 CET (Amsterdam) / 15:00 EET (Helsinki) / 22:00 AEST (Brisbane)

Link to the webinar: tbc

You can find information about other IFLA webinars here.

IFLA ARL Webinar 2 – Introduction to Open Access

IFLA - სამ, 30/04/2019 - 04:18

Title:  Introduction to Open Access

Presenter:  Dr. Jasmin Schmitz, Open Access Advisory Services, ZB MED – Information Centre for Life Sciences

Date & Time: May 14, 2019 11:00 AM Rome

Register in advance for this meeting

 

Abstract:

Introduction to Open Access

This introductory webinar will deal with the very basics of open access publishing. After providing a definition, the differences between the golden and green route of open access will be explained. The advantages and opportunities of open access along with basic aspects such as publication fees (and how to finance them) and licenses are addressed as well.

Presenter Bio:

Jasmin Schmitz received a PhD in information science. She worked as a freelance trainer for a commercial provider for scientific information and as scientific project coordinator in the field of bibliometrics. At ZB MED she is responsible for the Open Access Advisory Services.

 

On the chat: Dr. Ursula Arning

Ursula Arning is head of PUBLISSO – Open Access – Digital Preservation – Research Data from ZB MED and Member of the ARL.

This webinar is free and open to the public. Please share this invitation openly.

Please register for the webinar here.

Series organiser: Dr Reggie Raju 

Chair of ARL: Ms Mimi Calter 

This session is the second in a series of presentations on topics relevant to Academic & Research Libraries.  Look out for our next session in July.

Libraries and Cultural Diversity: Preserving Heritage, Promoting Dialogue

IFLA - შაბ, 27/04/2019 - 17:03

IFLA has submitted comments to the Office of the High Commissioner on Human Rights on the subject of cultural diversity and human rights. With a responsibility to preserve the heritage of all of our communities, to facilitate access to information, and as defenders of free speech, libraries have much to contribute.

Under international law, everyone has a right both to free expression, and to engaging in the cultural life of their community. Nonetheless, there remain threats to cultural diversity.

Politically motivated intolerance of cultural differences, a lack of opportunity for people from minority groups to speak out, and the collections practices of the past that saw some groups’ heritage as being more important than that of others’: all risk limiting cultural diversity.

In a Resolution at the United Nations General Assembly in 2017, Member States agreed on the importance of supporting cultural diversity, calling on governments and civil society alike to act. It also asked the High Commissioner for Human Rights to deliver a report on progress.

As part of a consultation designed to shape this report, IFLA has submitted comments. These highlight the work of IFLA’s Preservation and Conservation Centres and Sections (notably the Libraries Serving Multicultural Populations Section and the Religion: Libraries and Dialogue Special Interest Group), as well as broader efforts to promote free speech and enable all members of society to fulfil their potential.

You can read IFLA’s submission on our publications page.

Copyright in the Asia-Pacific Region: the Right Rules for Libraries?

IFLA - შაბ, 27/04/2019 - 14:46

The World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO) is organising three regional seminars to understand how far copyright rules meet the needs of libraries around the world. The first one starts on Monday in Singapore, looking at the Asia-Pacific. IFLA will be there.

Copyright is crucial to the work of libraries, as it shapes the way information can be accessed and used. To ensure that it does not stand in the way of our public interest mission, exceptions and limitations are a fundamental part of copyright systems.

At the World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO), United Nations member states have been exploring this question. To go further into details, WIPO has organised three regional seminars: in the Asia-Pacific region, in the African region, and in the Latin America and the Caribbean region. The first one, for the Asia-Pacific region, takes place in Singapore next week.

The Asia-Pacific Regional Seminar

This two-day seminar (29-30 April) will analyse the situation of libraries, archives and museums as well as educational and research institutions in the region and will explore areas for action at the political level.

Countries from the Asia-Pacific region will be represented by their copyright office (or government office in charge of copyright). Libraries, archives and museums, as well as other non-governmental organisations, will also be there.

There will mostly be workshop discussions, where member states, observers and WIPO officials will exchange their views and experience on existing copyright laws and whether they are suitable to the mission of our institutions.

What are our objectives?

At WIPO, IFLA works to underline the need to deliver progress at the international level on the topic of exceptions and limitations. It is the best way to ensure that these provisions apply across-borders (and so enable libraries globally to cooperate), and to encourage change in countries where reform to copyright laws is overdue.

At the Asia-Pacific regional seminar, we will call for this, underlining how in many countries in the region, copyright laws do not respond to the public interest mission of libraries, archives and museums.

Stay tuned for the outcomes of the meeting on IFLA’s webpage and social media, under the hashtag #Copyright4Libraries.

For more information, you can watch our webinar on the matter, recorded and made available on our website. See our infographic on exceptions and limitations in the region. We will be live-tweeting the event.

Mandalay 'Effective Training' workshop

eifl licensing news - პარ, 26/04/2019 - 12:27

EIFL e-Library Myanmar project partner universities - University of Yangon, Universities' Central Library, Yangon University of Economics,  East Yangon and West Yangon universities, Dagon University, Sittwe University and Mawlamyine University - are to attend a three-day workshop on ‘Effective Training’.

Each university will be represented by librarians who train faculty and students to navigate through licensed e-resources and manage references for research publications.

Yangon 'Effective Training' workshop

EIFL news and events - პარ, 26/04/2019 - 12:27

EIFL e-Library Myanmar project partner universities - University of Yangon, Universities' Central Library, Yangon University of Economics,  East Yangon and West Yangon universities, Dagon University, Sittwe University and Mawlamyine University - are to attend a three-day workshop on ‘Effective Training’.

Each university will be represented by librarians who train faculty and students to navigate through licensed e-resources and manage references for research publications.

WIPO Regional Seminar in Africa

EIFL news and events - პარ, 26/04/2019 - 12:06

A delegation from EIFL will participate in the WIPO (World Intellectual Property Organization) Regional Seminar for the African region on libraries, archives, museums, and educational and research institutions.

A Library Manifesto for Europe

IFLA - ხუთ, 25/04/2019 - 23:26

​The decisions taken in Brussels and Strasbourg have a significant impact on libraries. To prepare for the coming mandate of the European Parliament, IFLA and partners have developed a Library Manifesto for Europe.

Policies at the European level can have a major effect on libraries. From the laws around copyright or the importation of cultural goods to funding programmes and even research, successful advocacy in Brussels and Strasbourg can offer real help to libraries across the region.

The European Parliament elections, due to take place on 23-26 May, stand to change the face of the Parliament itself. The people elected will, for the next five years, be key interlocutors for libraries. The results will also shape the leadership of the European Commission and Presidency of the European Council.

It is therefore an important moment to set out the priorities for libraries and their users, and seek guarantees of support.  

IFLA, working with partners in LIBER, EBLIDA, SPARC Europe and Public Libraries 2030, has therefore developed a Library Manifesto for Europe, setting out six key requests. 

These cover the work of libraries in supporting education and skills, research and innovation, and culture and heritage. They also include the need for Europe to play an active role in supporting libraries worldwide, both through its development programmes and the positions on issues such as copyright.

Drawing on the Manifesto, IFLA is also working directly at the European level, as well as through its members at the national level to seek commitments from parties and candidates about how they will support libraries if they are successful.  

IFLA will be publishing the responses received on a dedicated website, as a resource to help any voter who cares about libraries understand what their decision at the end of May could mean.

We encourage anyone in the European Union and beyond with an interest in supporting libraries and their missions to read the manifesto and use it in your own advocacy work.

Visit the europe4libraries2019.eu website to download translations of the report and relevant materials.

Training Namibian public library trainers

EIFL news and events - ხუთ, 25/04/2019 - 15:47

Seventeen trainers from public libraries in Namibia will attend two EIFL workshops on the topics, how to evaluate new public library services (two days), and communications and advocacy (two days).

The 17 trainees were selected by Namibia Library and Archives Service (NLAS) to become trainers within the NLAS network of 65 public libraries. They will pass on their learning and skills to other librarians in the NLAS network.

Spain’s Recent Copyright Reform: an Interview with the Chair of the Library Association’s Copyright Group

IFLA - ხუთ, 25/04/2019 - 12:13

The Spanish government recently implemented two European directives: the Marrakesh Directive, and the Collective Management Directive. The bill that transposed these two pieces of legislation came with unexpected proposals on the topic of public lending rights.

This case provides a good example of why keeping an eye on every legislative step is necessary, and of why the upcoming transposition of the Directive on Copyright in the Digital Single Market might open up new opportunities.

Ciro Llueca, director of the Library and Learning Resources at the Open University of Catalonia (UOC) and Chair of the Copyright group at the Spanish Library Association (FESABID) tells us about the recent changes:

Could you tell us about the changes that have been made to transpose the Marrakesh Directive?

From many years, the Spanish association for blind people, the ONCE, has been playing an essential role to provide access to materials in accessible formats, thanks to the broad copyright exception that was already in place. The Marrakesh Treaty will now, in addition, permit cross-border exchange of copies under the exception, with no remuneration, between Spain, as an EU member, and third countries that are parties to the Treaty.

What about the transposition of the Collective Management Directive?

The provisions that implement this Directive mainly focus on ensuring more control over collective management organisations (CMOs).

It is worth noting that the CMO lobby is very strong in Spain. Not only them, but also companies both from the publishing and audiovisual industries have a very strong influence on the Spanish Ministry of Culture, no matter what political party is ruling.

While smaller CMOs such as CEDRO’s (the CMO for books, journals, etc.) will never reach the levels of scandal we have seen around the SGAE (the CMO for music, and the biggest one in Spain), many believe that they take an unfairly tough approach towards smaller institutions. It has reached an extent where even the patience of their best friend, the government, is coming to an end.

The transposition of the Collective Management Directive includes a demand for clear and transparent information and audit, and a sanctions regime which imposes, for the most serious cases, disqualification as a CMO and fines of up to 800.000 €. We finally have legal provisions with a clear and fair message, but let’s see if there will be courage from government to enforce the provisions if needed.

FESABID is satisfied with this transposition, because it seems to reflect our historical position: authors must be recognized and paid for their work, but with transparency, publicity and loyalty to the public interest from the side of CMOs.

How does the current system of public lending rights work in Spain? Do you see any flaws?

Generally speaking, it is not working well. Very few public administrations are implementing the public lending right scheme. We have an enormous problem around payment collection. Let’s be clear: in Spain, lots of people, including citizen and politicians, disagree with the principles of public lending rights. Sometimes the reason is related to the low budgets of public libraries. From my viewpoint, we should ensure that the failed implementation of cultural politics due to the underfunding of libraries does not end up harming another legitimate group of interest: the authors, especially local authors. 

Certainly, scandals around CMOs don’t help to solve the current situation. But several regional governments, such as the ones from Catalonia, Madrid and now Castilla-La Mancha, have shown that reporting and counting issues can be solved when all sides are willing to negotiate. In neither of these cases there is damage to libraries’ budgets, since remuneration comes from the public administration. And as I said, CMOs must be transparent with financial delivery.

How will the recent legislative change be helpful?

The recent change placed the responsibility of managing the financial aspects of public lending rights in the hands of provinces, whereas this previously sat with the councils of towns with more than 5 000 people.

This change can be helpful. First of all, to the local public administration: before the change, most councils were unable (or not interested) to do it. And secondly, for CMOs: in Spain, CEDRO had to ask 1 315 town councils to provide them with information on loans and then request the payments. It was a complete failure.

Would FESABID have suggested another approach?

The recent change is not perfect, but it is much better than before. FESABID proposed placing the responsibility at a higher administrative level, regional or national, as happens in other EU countries. 

The risk with leaving responsibility to towns or provinces is that we end up with a scenario that older people may remember from the “Yes, Minister” British sitcom from 80s. We could have a “Yes, Minister” effect, where officials claim obedience but avoid doing what they are supposed to do – both by policy and ethics – to the detriment of our natural allies in reading policies: the authors.

Do you have any information on how the government will implement this new scheme?

It’s too early to know. In the Spanish Ministry of Culture, the current general director of Book and Reading, Ms. Olvido García-Valdés, was nominated a few months ago, and she is working hard: for first time in several years, she tried – but did not entirely succeed – to get all the local representatives of public libraries together with CMOs and FESABID to sit at the same table.

Now national elections are around the corner. Depending on the results, Ms. García-Valdés will be confirmed or not in her position. Even with a committed team in the Ministry, a change in this political position could have serious implications.  

To end with another audiovisual reference, think of “Groundhog Day” with Bill Murray and Andie MacDowell? Spain can repeat, one more time, its current drama and disagreements about public lending right. But now we have to be realistic about other priorities, namely transposing the Directive on Copyright in the Digital Single Market, and discussions around public lending rights might need to be put on hold.  

Spotlight on Open Access Monographs: Collecting Stories from LIBER Libraries

LIBER news - ხუთ, 25/04/2019 - 11:38

The transition to Open Access (OA) has accelerated in recent months thanks to international initiatives such as Plan S. Many of the initiatives are, however, focused on journal articles as the dominant format for disseminating research and, in particular, the publishing patterns within fields such as science, technology or medicine. The lack of incentives for…

The post Spotlight on Open Access Monographs: Collecting Stories from LIBER Libraries appeared first on LIBER.

Four more universities adopt OA policies

EIFL news and events - ოთხ, 24/04/2019 - 12:51

EIFL welcomes the news that four more universities in EIFL partner countries, one in Ethiopia and three in Serbia, have adopted open access and open science policies.

This brings the total number of institutions in EIFL partner countries that have adopted open access and open science policies to 148.

Call for Applications to the IFLA Journal Editorial Committee

IFLA - ოთხ, 24/04/2019 - 04:00

The IFLA Professional Committee is calling for four members to join the IFLA Journal Editorial Committee, for a term of four years (renewable once) from 2019-2023. 

Therefore, members are sought from the following locations:

  • 1 from IFLA Region Asia and Oceania
  • 1 from IFLA Region Africa
  • 1 from IFLA Region Latin America and the Caribbean
  • 1 from world at large

The members appointed from IFLA’s regions will have a special role in representing the IFLA Journal to readers and authors from their region and in assisting to identify topics and issues of interest to a global readership.

IFLA Journal

IFLA Journal is an international, scholarly, peer-reviewed journal, publishing research-based articles that impact and enrich professional practice. The articles focus on key topics such as the role of information in society, developing inclusive services, supporting economic development, increasing access to knowledge and engagement in policies that impact libraries and citizens worldwide. Its Editor, Steve Witt, has introduced a regular special issue that explores a topic in-depth, engaging with researchers and professionals from a wide range of fields and disciplines. IFLA Journal is published quarterly and is indexed by Scopus. Articles are normally published in English, with abstracts translated into IFLA’s other official languages (Arabic, Chinese, French, German, Russian and Spanish).

The IFLA Journal Editorial Committee is appointed by and reports to the Professional Committee.  It manages the editorial direction of the IFLA Journal and ensures its quality, actively participating in the review process.

Roles and responsibilities of the Editorial Committee
  • Provide advice to the Professional Committee on all matters relating to the editorial direction of the IFLA Journal;
  • Act as panel of peer reviewers for submitted papers and also assist in creating a list of other experts who will undertake review;
  • Monitor the quality of submissions and propose measures for improvement;
  • Provide detailed constructive editorial review to authors of submitted papers;
  • Identify themes for the Journal in key areas of IFLA’s strategy and work;
  • Provide advice to the Professional Committee, as needed.

For more information about the role and duties of the Editorial Committee, see the Terms of Reference.

Member expertise

Members of the Editorial Committee are appointed on the basis of the following expertise:

  • Practical experience of the peer review process, with the capacity to review critically the research method, impact and novelty of the papers being presented for review;
  • Familiarity with research methodologies in the field of library and information science;
  • Experience with editing and/or publishing in a peer-reviewed publication;
  • High level of competence of working and writing in the English language. Knowledge of one of the other languages of IFLA (Arabic, Chinese, French, German, Russian and Spanish) is an advantage.
Application process

To apply for a position as a reviewer and member of the Editorial Committee, please complete the application form.

Key dates
  • Wednesday, 17 April: Applications open
  • Friday, 17 May: Call for applications close
  • Friday, 14 June: Applicants will be informed of the outcome after this date.  The appointed members will take up their position in August at the IFLA WLIC in Athens, Greece.

Submit applications and all enquiries to:

Shali Zhang
Chair, IFLA Journal Editorial Committee
shali.zhang@auburn.edu

Sharjah, United Arab Emirates, Becomes World Book Capital

IFLA - ოთხ, 24/04/2019 - 00:45

The title of World Book Capital has passed from Athens, Greece, to Sharjah, United Arab Emirates. IFLA President Glòria Pérez-Salmerón and Secretary-General Gerald Leitner are representing libraries at the handover event.

The World Book Capital programme, managed by UNESCO, has seen a series of world cities take it in turn to commit to supporting books and reading. IFLA, as a member of the Advisory Committee alongside the International Publishers Association and UNESCO, has a key role in selecting recipients and shaping the programme.

The holder of the 2019 title, from 23 April 2019 until 22 April 2020, is Sharjah, in the United Arab Emirates.

The city has already made a significant commitment to promoting reading through its support to libraries, books in every home, and the local publishing industry. It has also recognised the importance of for freedom in publishing if readers are to enjoy a full range of books and other materials.  

The coming year’s activities will see this work intensified, and IFLA looks forward to Sharjah offering many positive stories and examples to others, in the region and around the world.

Speaking at an event preceding the launch, IFLA Secretary-General Gerald Leitner said: 

‘For libraries, for IFLA, equitable, meaningful access to information, including the ability to find, read, understand, apply and create, is a prerequisite for sustainable development. An accelerator of progress. A bridger of divides. I am convinced that Sharjah, in its time as World Book Capital, and into the future, will provide a model for others in this respect, in the region, in the world’.

On Thursday 25 April, IFLA President Glòria Pérez-Salmerón will open the IFLA-AFLI conference, also taking place in Sharjah. IFLA Secretary-General Gerald Leitner will then offer a speech. 

Read more stories about the World Book Capital programme.

Call for Applications to the IFLA Journal Editorial Committee

IFLA - სამ, 23/04/2019 - 21:00

The IFLA Professional Committee is calling for four members to join the IFLA Journal Editorial Committee, for a term of four years (renewable once) from 2019-2023. 

Therefore, members are sought from the following locations:

  • 1 from IFLA Region Asia and Oceania
  • 1 from IFLA Region Africa
  • 1 from IFLA Region Latin America and the Caribbean
  • 1 from world at large

The members appointed from IFLA’s regions will have a special role in representing the IFLA Journal to readers and authors from their region and in assisting to identify topics and issues of interest to a global readership.

IFLA Journal

IFLA Journal is an international, scholarly, peer-reviewed journal, publishing research-based articles that impact and enrich professional practice. The articles focus on key topics such as the role of information in society, developing inclusive services, supporting economic development, increasing access to knowledge and engagement in policies that impact libraries and citizens worldwide. Its Editor, Steve Witt, has introduced a regular special issue that explores a topic in-depth, engaging with researchers and professionals from a wide range of fields and disciplines. IFLA Journal is published quarterly and is indexed by Scopus. Articles are normally published in English, with abstracts translated into IFLA’s other official languages (Arabic, Chinese, French, German, Russian and Spanish).

The IFLA Journal Editorial Committee is appointed by and reports to the Professional Committee.  It manages the editorial direction of the IFLA Journal and ensures its quality, actively participating in the review process.

Roles and responsibilities of the Editorial Committee
  • Provide advice to the Professional Committee on all matters relating to the editorial direction of the IFLA Journal;
  • Act as panel of peer reviewers for submitted papers and also assist in creating a list of other experts who will undertake review;
  • Monitor the quality of submissions and propose measures for improvement;
  • Provide detailed constructive editorial review to authors of submitted papers;
  • Identify themes for the Journal in key areas of IFLA’s strategy and work;
  • Provide advice to the Professional Committee, as needed.

For more information about the role and duties of the Editorial Committee, see the Terms of Reference.

Member expertise

Members of the Editorial Committee are appointed on the basis of the following expertise:

  • Practical experience of the peer review process, with the capacity to review critically the research method, impact and novelty of the papers being presented for review;
  • Familiarity with research methodologies in the field of library and information science;
  • Experience with editing and/or publishing in a peer-reviewed publication;
  • High level of competence of working and writing in the English language. Knowledge of one of the other languages of IFLA (Arabic, Chinese, French, German, Russian and Spanish) is an advantage.
Application process

To apply for a position as a reviewer and member of the Editorial Committee, please complete the application form.

Key dates
  • Wednesday, 17 April: Applications open
  • Friday, 17 May: Call for applications close
  • Friday, 14 June: Applicants will be informed of the outcome after this date.  The appointed members will take up their position in August at the IFLA WLIC in Athens, Greece.

Submit applications and all enquiries to:

Shali Zhang
Chair, IFLA Journal Editorial Committee
shali.zhang@auburn.edu

Traditional Knowledge and Copyright: An Interview with Wend Wendland, Director of the WIPO Traditional Knowledge Division

IFLA - სამ, 23/04/2019 - 15:01

We had a chat with Wend Wendland, Director of the Traditional Knowledge Division at the World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO), to find out more both about the division and the WIPO Intergovernmental Committee on Intellectual Property and Genetic Resources, Traditional Knowledge and Folklore’s work plan. 

The term “traditional knowledge” (TK) in this interview is used as an umbrella term to cover both the content of scientific/technical knowledge (such as the knowledge of Indigenous Peoples and local communities about the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity) and traditional cultural expressions/expressions of folklore (TCEs), which are the artistic, literary and musical forms in which knowledge and culture are expressed, such as Indigenous art, music, designs and performances.

Q: To start with a very basic question to inform our audience, could you explain what intellectual property has to do with traditional knowledge?

A: The relationship between TK and intellectual property (IP) runs along two main axes.  The first is that TK is by and large not protected by the conventional IP system.  Although TK embodies human innovation and creativity, it is relegated to the “public domain” because it is often communal, oral and inter-generational in character.  At the same time, however, contemporary adaptations of TK and innovations derived therefrom may be protectable by the IP system without any prior involvement by, acknowledgement of or recompense to the communities from whom the TK was obtained. The result is that, as they see it, communities are excluded from the IP system in both directions: what they have cannot be protected and they cannot stop or benefit from third parties using their knowledge to get IP protection.

Q: What is the Traditional Knowledge Division currently working on?

A:  There are two main pillars to our work.  The first is to help Indigenous Peoples and local communities make more effective and strategic use of the current IP system. This entails them knowing more about how the IP system works in practice and how they can make smart use of it to protect their TK – either “positively” (through acquiring and exercising IP rights) or “defensively” (through the prevention of anyone acquiring IP rights over their TK).  Our publication Promote and Protect your Culture is a hands-on guide to IP for Indigenous and local communities.  We also run training programs for Indigenous and local communities.  We recently launched a short animation that explains the issues as seen through the eyes of a fictional community: it is entitled “Navigating Traditional Knowledge and Intellectual Property—The Story of the Yakuanoi.”

The second main pillar is helping countries and communities to think through options for new legislative and practical measures for protecting TK and then to design and implement whatever options they decide upon.  For example, a country might wish to enact a sui generis law for the protection of TK and/or establish a database of TK as part of a “defensive” protection strategy. Or, a community may wish to grant access and use rights in its TK to a third party, and needs help in drafting and negotiating IP clauses in a contract.  This second pillar of the Division’s work includes facilitation of the international negotiation taking place in the Intergovernmental Committee on Intellectual Property and Genetic Resources, Traditional Knowledge and Folklore (IGC). 

Q: What are the current workplan and objectives of the IGC?

A: The workplan and objectives are set out in the IGC’s current mandate for the 2018-2019 biennium.  Five sessions of the IGC have already taken place in 2018 and 2019, and there is still one more to go, IGC 40, which will take place from June 17 to 21, 2019. The IGC process is intense, as it meets roughly every three months. In this biennium, a new feature has been added, namely, meetings of ad hoc groups of experts.

In terms of objectives, the text of the mandate is relatively detailed and lengthy, but if I were to extract the core objective from the mandate it is that the IGC should “during the next budgetary biennium 2018/2019, continue to expedite its work, with the objective of reaching an agreement on an international legal instrument(s), without prejudging the nature of outcome(s), relating to intellectual property which will ensure the balanced and effective protection of genetic resources (GRs), traditional knowledge (TK) and traditional cultural expressions (TCEs).” 

Q: Libraries play an important role in the preservation and dissemination of knowledge for public interest purposes. How does this fit with questions around traditional knowledge and cultural expression?

A: Yes, libraries play many essential roles in society. There are a number of profound tensions lying at the interface between libraries and indigenous cultures including but going well beyond IP issues. I am aware that the International Federation of Library Associations (IFLA) is alive to and addressing these tensions, because it has an Indigenous Matters Section and, in 2014, issued an important Statement on Indigenous Traditional Knowledge

How IP rights are acquired, exercised and managed is directly impactful on relationships between libraries and Indigenous communities. Libraries may hold invaluable, even unique, ethnographic records of ancient traditions, accounts of oral histories and disappearing languages, and audio and audio-visual recordings of traditional know-how and cultural ceremonies and practices that are integral to an Indigenous People’s or local community’s sense of identity. Very often, the IP rights in those materials, including sacred and/or secret materials, vest in the library or in the hands of the ethnographers, anthropologists, archivists and other researchers and fieldworkers because they are regarded by conventional IP systems as the “authors” of the materials. In such instances, Indigenous Peoples and local communities feel disempowered and excluded as they have no say over if and how the materials are accessed and used by others. Further, and unfortunately, it has happened that misappropriated cultural materials were initially sourced from a cultural institution. From an Indigenous and local community perspective, this makes cultural institutions appear, inadvertently, complicit in the misappropriation and misuse of their TK and TCEs. Cultural institutions may even be accused by some of contributing to the “colonization of knowledge”. 

WIPO’s Creative Heritage Project (empowering communities to record their own cultural traditions and manage the resulting IP rights themselves) and our publication Intellectual Property and the Safeguarding of Traditional Cultures: Legal Issues and Practical Options for Museums, Libraries and Archives address these issues directly.  

The Traditional Knowledge Division’s work on the specific issue of libraries and other cultural institutions is aimed at encouraging the acquisition, exercise and management of IP rights in ways that contribute sensitively and respectfully to fostering cross-cultural partnerships between cultural institutions and Indigenous communities.  We would be happy to work further with IFLA on this.

Q: We have seen that the current text under discussion refers to the work that libraries do. Are there efforts to ensure that no matter what protection is adopted for traditional knowledge, libraries and other cultural heritage institutions are still able to fulfil their public interest missions?

A: The current drafts of the TK and TCE texts are still work-in-progress and heavily bracketed. The TK and TCEs texts are separate, although there are many similarities between them. Almost all the articles contain “Alternatives”. 

In the articles in each of the two texts dealing with exceptions and limitations to the protection of TK and TCEs, there are “Alternatives” that contain explicit exceptions for the non-commercial activities of inter alia libraries. I am just paraphrasing, and I invite readers to consult the drafts which are online. As this negotiation is intergovernmental, it will be up to the Member States to ensure that the interests of libraries and other cultural heritage institutions are safeguarded. I would strongly encourage the library and information services community, so ably represented by IFLA, to follow the process closely, take the floor as needed and, in the margins of the negotiation, convey its concerns and wishes to Government delegates through bilateral meetings, written comments and side-events.  Many observers are accredited to participate in the work of the IGC, including IFLA.  The IGC’s negotiations may be slow but concrete outcomes are the IP priority of most countries.

Q: What would be the impact of an international instrument?

A:  Agreement on an international instrument (or instruments) would have several impacts, political as well as legal. Adoption of an instrument/s on TK and TCEs would be of historic significance, representing perhaps a once-in-a-generation pivot in IP policy making. It could further legitimize the IP system in the developing world, and perhaps help to unblock other IP negotiations which are currently stalled. Legally, new instruments may provide, for the first time, an internationally enforceable right for Indigenous Peoples and local communities in subject matter that is currently treated as public domain.  It could potentially impact upon the day-to-day work of libraries. Clearly, the negotiation raises many complex policy, legal and practical questions. The ultimate impact of a new instrument/s will hinge on what it ultimately contains in terms of substantive obligations and which countries ratify it.

Q: How close is the committee to agreeing on the text of an international instrument, and what are the main focuses of current discussions?

A: The Committee addresses three topics, genetic resources, TK and TCEs, and the level of maturity of the negotiation is not necessarily the same on all three. The current drafts of the international legal instruments on TK and TCEs are very much work-in-progress and they are heavily bracketed.  Progress is slow, but the texts improve incrementally at each session, as the negotiators work towards outcomes that should be pragmatic and balanced yet adequately consequential. It’s not possible to make any predictions at this stage as to when agreement might be reached. The issues are challenging, and countries and observers have many views on them. Many argue that changes to the working methods of the IGC are needed, and that the texts need to streamlined and/or shortened. Methodological changes such as these – as well as shifts in countries’ priorities and in geopolitical dynamics – could propel the negotiation in unexpected directions at any time.

Q: There is discussion of a sui generis approach to protect traditional knowledge and cultural expression, a way of protecting it not based on copyright law. We have seen this approach advocated for in New Zealand for instance. Is there any support for such a perspective within the committee? 

A:  That is exactly what the Committee is working on – the texts of an international legal instruments/s that would provide sui generis protection for TK and TCEs. This would be a form of protection that is IP-similar but specially adapted to fill the gaps in the cover provided by the existing IP system. Crafting an IP-similar sui generis system involves drawing upon the principles, values and norms of IP protection and adapting them as needed.  Not all gaps necessarily need filling, however, and a conundrum for policymakers is to decide which gaps should and should not be filled.  Nor should, it could be argued, a sui generis system for the protection of TCEs entirely contradict the protection system for non-traditional literary, musical and artistic materials, i.e. the copyright system.  For example, to balance the interests of creators and the public, the copyright system allows “borrowing from” but not “copying”.  It could well be envisaged that the same should be allowed in relation to TCEs, at least non-sacred TCEs. Similarly, in keeping with the idea-expressions dichotomy, copyright does not protect a work’s “style”. Should the same not also apply to protected TCEs?  Not all countries agree, however, that new, sui generis norms are needed, as they believe that the existing IP system is adequate in addressing the needs of Indigenous Peoples and local communities.

Any views expressed by Mr. Wendland do not necessarily represent the views of WIPO or any of its Member States.

 

Positive start to WIPO’s first copyright session in 2019

EIFL news and events - სამ, 23/04/2019 - 11:47

Teresa Hackett, EIFL Copyright and Libraries Programme Manager, participated in the 38th session of the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) Standing Committee on Copyright and Related Rights (SCCR) that took place in Geneva from 1-5 April 2019. EIFL engaged with member states to explain why libraries need an international copyright framework, and how the planned WIPO regional seminars can contribute to achieving real results.

Mandalay 'Effective Training' workshop

eifl licensing news - ხუთ, 18/04/2019 - 14:43

EIFL e-Library Myanmar project partner universities - University of Mandalay, Yadanabon University, Mandalay Technological University, University of Computer Studies, Mandalay, Yangon Technological University, and University of Computer Studies,Yangon - are to attend a three-day workshop on ‘Effective Training’.

Each university will be represented by librarians who train faculty and students to navigate through licensed e-resources and manage references for research publications.

Mandalay 'Effective Training' workshop

EIFL news and events - ხუთ, 18/04/2019 - 14:43

EIFL e-Library Myanmar project partner universities - University of Mandalay, Yadanabon University, Mandalay Technological University, University of Computer Studies, Mandalay, Yangon Technological University, and University of Computer Studies,Yangon - are to attend a three-day workshop on ‘Effective Training’.

Each university will be represented by librarians who train faculty and students to navigate through licensed e-resources and manage references for research publications.

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