NPSIG Activities Report: September 2015-August 2016

IFLA New Professionals Special Interest Group (NPSIG)

Activities Report September 2015-August 2016

Since August 2015, the NPSIG has a new leadership team, including a Convenor Maria Violeta Bertolini (from Argentina, living in USA), Co-Convenor Milan Vasiljevic (from Serbia, living in Qatar),  Information Coordinator Antoine Torrens (France), and Information Co-Coordinator Katia Shklyar (from Russia, living in Finland).

The NPSIG objectives as defined in 2015 are:

  • To empower new professionals to be involved in their national associations and with IFLA to become new local and international leaders.
  • To connect new professionals and new professionals supporters to share experiences, opportunities and make new friends and colleagues from all over the world, mainly through social media and online events.
  • To offer first quality free training and knowledge exchange opportunities through online webinars, open programmes and satellite meetings.

NPSIG Activities from September 2015 to August 2016


  • IFLA/ALA New Librarians, Global Connection Webinar Series

The NPSIG launched with the Webinar Series Coordinator Loida Garcia-Febo in October 2015 a call to propose new topics for the 2016 webinars. For the first time, the call was launched using Doodle, which was very effective to allow participants to vote, propose topics and make comments. 30 answers were received from all over the world, and the 4 most voted topics were: Big Data, Information Literacy, Partnerships and Public Policy.

The NPSIG is Co-Coordinator of the IFLA/ALA New Librarians, Global Connection Webinar Series with the CPDWL Section. On June 15th, 2016 took place the first webinar fully organized by the new leadership team. The webinar topic was “Big Data: new roles and opportunities for new librarians” and featured President Elect Glòria Pérez-Salmerón as keynote speaker. The webinar reached top capacity of Adobe Connect (more than 100 attendees) after 10 minutes of starting, and it lasted 1 hour and 50 minutes with 70% of attendees still connected (even with time differences there were attendees from all continents). The NPSIG published the link to recording and the presentations slides in the NPSIG Blog and IFLA.

The NPSIG also contributed with the dissemination via social media, blog, etc. of the following webinars organized since August 2015:

  • “The role of competencies in librarians’ Continuing Professional Development” October 26, 2015
  • “Libraries, Advocacy and the Implementation of the 2030 Agenda” December, 15, 2015
  • “Information Literacy in my career” July 26th 2016


  • NPSIG Open Session in WLIC 2016

The NPSIG has organized an Open Session at IFLA WLIC 2016 “Failing successfully in a librarian’s career: is a setback an opportunity to grow, or just an unwelcome incident on the road to success?” (17.08.2016, 11:45 – 13:45, C213-215).

To ensure a more broader participation on this very thought provoking topic, the NPSIG published the call for papers in the WLIC 2016 website, the IFLA website and the NPSIG Blog in 9 languages: French, English, Spanish, Russian, Finnish, Portuguese, Italian, Arabic, and Persian. The leadership team and volunteers from all over the world contributed with translations and proofreading.

The NPSIG received 12 paper submissions, and 2 papers were selected:

  • Learning from Adversity: Advice from Library Leaders by Win Shih (University of Southern California, USA) and Jeannette Pierce (University of Missouri, United States).
  • The Information Professional: Failure or Success in Times of Crisis by Jorge González (Universidad Central de Venezuela, Venezuela) and Evelyn Guerrero (Universidad Nacional Abierta, Venezuela).

As the valuable contribution of one of the NPSIG volunteers, a playlist in YouTube was developed with a selection of videos about “failing successfully”, to be played during the session and shared in NPSIG platforms.

A call for feedback for the open session about management of failure in libraries was launched via the NPSIG Blog in English, German, Spanish, French and Russian, IFLA’s New professional special interest group request librarians around the world to share a few anonymous feedbacks of failures in their professional life.


  • IFLAcamp4 2016

The NPSIG is organizing since August 2015 two major events: the IFLAcamp4, a two-day satellite meeting in the mode of a library unconference that provides plenty of space for ad-hoc sessions and group discussions. The participant-driven approach allows for active involvement of all attendees and including all kinds of topics of interest. The IFLAcamp is taking place in OCLC Headquarters in Dublin, Ohio with the support of Kent State University School of Library & Information Science and OCLC.


  • Social event in Columbus

The NPSIG has organized this year a new type of event during the WLIC conference: the New Professionals Happy Hour, the event will count with the participation of the IFLA President Elect Glòria Pérez-Salmerón and Loida Garcia-Febo, Member of the Governing Board, and will be a unique opportunity to get IFLA Leadership and new professionals together in a social environment. Everyone in the MLAS is invited to participate also.


  • NPSIG Wiki

After August 2015, the new leadership team revamped and reorganized the NPSIG Wiki in PBWORKS, systematizing NPSIG procedures to ensure: effective management, compliance with IFLA procedures, and easier transitions between leaderships. This was one of the objectives of the NPSIG Action Plan 2015-2016 and the Wiki has become the primary repository for the NPSIG work and documentation. The membership increases regularly, with new volunteers and people interested that proactively subscribes (84 subscribers until August 2016). The goal is to have complete transparency of the work of the NPSIG, and to allow activists and volunteers to join. The NPSIG has also subscribed the IFLA President Elect, the MLAS Chair, the Division IV Chair, and the IFLA Professional Support Officer to keep them informed.


  • Virtual Business Meetings

The NPSIG has organized two Virtual Business Meetings since August 2015:


  • Advocacy

The NPSIG has created a promotional video about the work of the Group including testimonies from the current leadership team, as well as the previous Convenor 2010-2014, Sebastian Wilke, and the NPSIG Co-Founder, Loida Garcia-Febo. The video was edited by Katia Shklyar, NPSIG Information Co-Coordinator.


  • Social Media, Mailing Lists and Blog

The NPSIG is connected and reaches out to the global library community regularly using mainly the following tools:

The NPSIG Leadership team has been very active in keeping all of these tools updated and communicating news and updates as regularly as possible.

Since August 2015:

  • 11 Blog Posts related to events and campaigns in the NPSIG Blog
  • 8 guest and original content Blog Posts in the NPSIG Blog
  • 18 news in the IFLA NPSIG Webpage
  • 9 events in the IFLA NPSIG Webpage

Current figures:

  • NPSIG Blog: 234 posts, 96384 views, 29093 visitors, 86 WordPress followers
  • 3882 likes of the NPSIG Facebook Page
  • 2257 followers in NPSIG Twitter
  • 55 subscribers to NPSIG YouTube Channel
  • 585 subscribers to New Professionals Discussion Group Mailing List


  • Outreach and Recruiting

The NPSIG has launched a survey to recruit new Volunteers in March 2016. 20 responses were received until August 2016. The NPSIG contacted the volunteers and added them to the Wiki and the NPSIG Slack account to foster discussions and collaboration.

The NPSIG is in the process of launching two other surveys this year:

  • New Professionals and Students survey: Following a discussion between SET and NPSIG about the Adopt a student program and to rethink IFLA’s programs for new professionals and students. The idea of the survey is to understand how new professionals and students are connected with IFLA and the two groups (SET and NPSIG), what they expect from IFLA, their motivations to be more active in the Federation, and how they receive information/are connected in the LIS field to better direct our communication efforts to this audience. The survey was submitted for comments to key stakeholders (IFLA President Elect, NPSIG Co-Founder, the MLAS Chair, the Division IV Chair, as well as members from MLAS, SET, and LTR). Results will be analyzed after the WLIC 2016 to continue the discussions and define a roadmap. The survey has been launched on August 1st, and by August 5th we have already received 193 responses.
  • NPSIG Activists Survey: This survey’s objective is to have a better idea of the NPSIG Activists network to be able to communicate and connect more effectively with them, in order to strengthen the NPSIG and better achieve its mission within IFLA. In particular, to know their interest in supporting the NPSIG and its activities, as well as to define better ways to communicate NPSIG projects and achievements with them, and to get their feedback and input. This survey is addressed to NPSIG Wiki members, considered NPSIG Activists and it will launched before the WLIC 2016.


  • Reports and Action Plans

The NPSIG submitted the Action Plan 2015-2016 and the Annual Report 2015-2015 as requested by IFLA HQ. These reports are available in the NPSIG Wiki, and a reduced version of the Action Plan is available in IFLA NPSIG webpage, activating for the first time the “Publications” section in the IFLA NPSIG Webpage.

The NPSIG is working in defining the next Action Plan 2016-2017 and the full Annual Report September 2015-August 2016. Both will be delivered after the WLIC 2016.


  • Other NPSIG activities in IFLA WLIC 2016:

The NPSIG Convenor was invited to participate in the:

  • President‐Elect’s Session “Librarians, the gears of the motors of change” representing the NPSIG under the title “New roles and opportunities for new librarians” (10 minutes presentation) (18.08.2016, 08:30-10:30, C220-222).
  • Big Data SIG Open Session and Business Meeting to bring to the table data issues pertinent to the NPSIG and new professionals (17.08.2016, 13:45-15:45, C112-115)
  • Newcomers Session under the title “From first-timer to committee member” (5 minutes presentation) (14.08.2016, 08:30-10:00, Union Station Ballrooms A/B/C)

The NPSIG Information Coordinator and Co-Convenor will represent the NPSIG in the:

  • Professional Committee Session “What makes a dynamic IFLA Professional Unit?” (17.08.2016, 13:45-16:00, C220-222).


Respectfully submitted by Maria Violeta Bertolini, NPSIG Convenor, on behalf of the NPSIG Leadership team, August 2016.


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