Conference practicesAugust 25, 2008 4:25 am library conferences
Visiting countries other than one’s own provides new perspectives on how to do things one is accustomed to seeing done in a particular way. Having attended conferences in other countries the past few months, I have gained new perspectives on practices at library conferences. I have wondered which would enhance the conference experience for ALA members at ALA’s Annual Conference.
- In May in Chihuahua the annual conference of Asociacion Mexicana de Bibliotecarios (AMBAC) opened with a series of speeches from local government officials and a uniformed color guard which presented Mexico’s flag. The assembly then sang the national anthem.
- In June in Ukraine the Crimea 2008 conference in Sudak also opened with a series of speeches by local government officials and other dignitaries. The conference flag and Was raised as part of the opening ceremony. A spirited closing ceremony included performances by a military band a girls’ marching drum corps.
- In July at the 2008 Sino-US Forum for Library Practice, co-sponsored by the Chinese American Librarians Association, in Kunming, China, participants sat at long tables. Each place was set with a notebook, pen, and a covered tea cup. Before the first session of the day started, hotel staff filled the cups, one by one, with hot water. During the session they replenished the hot water.
- In August at the IFLA World Library and Information Congress in Quebec City, the closing session included a video about libraries and other cultural institutions in Milan, site of the 2009 conference. It also included a short musical performance by two young musicians who are students at the Verdi music school in Milan.
Which of these practices would enhance the participants experience at ALA’s Annual Conference? I am partial to the tea service at the Kunming conference; however scaling that from a conference for about 200 to a conference for more than 20,000 would be a huge challenge.
Which of these would ALA members welcome? Post a comment sharing your ideas!