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On cultural diversity by zsa11905


									On cultural diversity

    IFLA satelite meeting

     Ton van Vlimmeren

    Utrecht, august 2003
Libraries in The Netherlands

• 512 library organizations

• 1442 locations

• 4,5 million patrons

• budget € 420 million
Some history

• Roman empire

• Attila the Hun

• Willibrord and other Celts

• Spanish and French occupations

• Huguenots and Jews

• Colonies: Indonesia, Surinam & Antilles

• Immigrants and refugees
Before we get started ..

• What has this to do with me?

• Risks?

• Nothing over them without them...

• Acknowledgements:

   – Jens Ingeman Larsen and Deborah Jacobs

Serving the cultural diversity

• Because it is our mission: Serving all people
  in the community

• Because people benefit

• Because society benefits

• Because the library benefits
Iraqi best surgeon-trainee

“He taught himself Dutch-language in the

public library…”

             Utrechts Nieuwsblad, April 4th, 2002
Library benefits

In Toronto the use of the library by nonnative
Canadians “more than doubles the use by those
born in Canada”.

             Library Journal, June 1st, 2003
Roles for libraries
Libraries enable:

• enjoy their own culture: collections

• keep in touch with the homeland

• learn mother-tongue of parents

• learning new countries language (2nd language)

• find the way in (new) society; community

• informing all groups about other groups cultures

• provide a stage for cultural activities
Relevant aspects (1)

• Political context: national and local

• Management and organization

• Staffing

• Finance

• Collections, Acquisition and cataloging

• Facility design and signage
Relevant aspects (2)

• Programs and services

• Reaching out to users, Marketing and

• Collaboration with community groups and

• Networks and consortial arrangements
Some conclusions

• Take leadership

• Seek political approval

• Support dedicated staff

• Focus on local information needs

• Seek collaboration with user groups

• Institutionalize services and projects

• Learn from others; identify partners
   For every complex problem
      there is bright solution
that is simple, elegant and wrong

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