Libraries, and the services they offer, are built on values. IFLA, as the global voice of libraries, has always taken a strong position in favour of fundamental freedoms, and in promoting the principles of access, empowerment, and non-discrimination.
From the annual World Library and Information Congress to the day-to-day work of our members around the globe, the library community defends and promotes these principles. The literate, informed and participatory societies that we seek to create depend on free expression and access to information through high quality library services, open for all.
This is both a necessary, and an ongoing effort. We do not currently live in a world where our values are universally shared. But we are not powerless.
The World Library and Information Congress offers a unique opportunity to drive progress. Through bringing together the world’s library and information professionals for a free exchange of ideas, views and practices, it empowers our members in host countries and their wider regions. Ultimately, it is library users, from local communities to international institutions, who benefit from the knowledge, skills and passion that participants bring home with them.
When identifying venues for the Congress, IFLA is faced with a choice between a simple boycott and the chance to engage with progressive voices around the world in support of our values and services. IFLA will, where possible, seize the opportunity to promote constructive and productive dialogue, and maximise the possibilities for all to participate.