South Africa Country Coordinator: International Librarians Network

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The International Librarians Network is a facilitated peer mentoring programme that starts it’s next round in September.

Country coordinators act as liaison points for each country. If you are in England, for example, and you want to know more about the program, you would speak to the England coordinator. Country coordinators are responsible for recruiting people in their country to the program.
Country coordinators are also expected to contribute content to the website and online discussions.

Karen du Toit has applied and was accepted as the country coordinator for South Africa. She has signed up for her fourth round (including the first test round), because it has proved to be of so much value to her own professional development.

Karen du Toit – South Africa Country Coordinator

Karen is a radio archivist in the SABC Radio Archives at the South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC), the national public broadcaster in South Africa. She has been working in archives and libraries at the SABC for nearly 25 years. She loves how technology and social media has changed the library and archives profession, and the fact that librarians and archivists are the change agents in this process.

Karen tweets at @karentoittoit and blogs at Karen’s 23 Mobile Things (personal) and SABC Media Libraries blog (corporate), while keeping the SABC Media Libraries website and social media sites updated.

 

Contact details for the South Africa ILN country coordinator: southafrica.ilnetwork@gmail.com

Twitter: @karentoittoit

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International Librarians Network Applications Open

Another great opportunity for connecting with a peer mentor from around the globe.

It is great for librarians as well as archivists to develop professional relationships with like-minded peers.

This is my fourth round that I am signing up for.

International Librarians Network

Photo CC by Tup Wanders: Globes Photo CC by Tup Wanders: Globes

Want to build your professional network and learn about librarianship around the world? Love the idea of professional travel but just don’t have the budget?

The International Librarians Network (ILN) is for you.

The ILN peer mentoring program is a facilitated program aimed at helping librarians develop international networks. We are pleased to announce the next round of this popular program will commence in September 2014.

Applications for the next round of partnerships are now open and close at midnight on 22 August 2014

If you want to know more about the ILN,  check out the information about  how the program works for details.

The ILN is open to anyone in the library and information industry around the world. The program remains free and the only requirements to participate are:

  • an internet connection
  • fluent English skills
  • one hour each week
  • a desire to build…

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International Librarians Network – a certificate of participation

The March to June round of the International Librarians Network has ended with certificates sent to all the participants.

The reflection, review and what next? post has already been published, and I will be signing up to the next round of ILN which will start in September.

I have connected with librarians from Australia, Indonesia and most recently Spain. It has been an eye-opening experience!

To sign up, complete the  Expression of Interest form.

Reflection, review and what next – International Librarians Network final discussion topics for this round #InterLibNet

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The most recent round of the International Librarians Network has come to an end. I have taken part in three of these sessions, and I have found it to be very valuable to my own professional development.

Most recently I have learnt a great deal from Alberto Boada García, a legal librarian from Spain. From Bekti Mulatiningsih from Indonesia who is studying towards a PhD in Information Science, and who helped me tremendously with some of the papers I presented at conferences. I also still keep in contact with Fiona Malcolm from Australia through social media.

I am going to answer the questions from two discussions topics in one.

What did you learn about the library profession in your partner’s country?
It was interesting to learn about the work of a legal librarian. It seems that legal librarians are doing it a bit differently than how we do it in the corporate world or in public libraries.

What did you learn about your partner’s workplace?
He works for the Judiciary Documentation Centre in San Sebastian (which looks like a fantastic place to stay) in Spain. He is mostly responsible for the website content for supplying judges with legal information.

What professional issues do you have in common with your partner?
We have the same issues with regards tight budgets and struggling being valued for our specialised skills in Information Science. It is also very difficult to advance in our careers (although I don’t think it is because of the same reasons in our countries), and working conditions are also not always ideal.

What professional issues are different for your partner?
Because he works in a legal setting, he has different content that he has to work with than in a normal library setting.

What was new or different for you about participating in the ILN?
Getting to meet with so many new, but also so many like-minded professionals who struggles with the same issues that we do!

What are the things you’ve wondered about throughout the program but have never asked?
I wanted to know more about my ILN partners’ private lives to get a greater sense of how they juggle their working lives with their private lives. Next round I am going to give it more attention! (Ask more questions!)

What next?

What changes have you or will you make to the way you work, based on your experience with the ILN?
I was inspired by my international peers to take more control of my own professional development. They plan and make a plan to attend conferences, although it is not always supported (and financed) by their libraries or corporations.
I also got involved with MOOCs and are planning to do them as they come along.

Has your approach to professional development changed? Will it?
Yes!

What will you do to continue developing your international network?
I will keep on signing up at the International Librarians Network! Of course!
I have already signed up here: Participate in the ILN
I will also continue with my participation in social and professional networks.

 

One thing that I missed in this round was the fact that my international partner was not involved in social networks such as Twitter. He is connected to library lists and networks in his country, but not connected on the global platforms. I would have liked to have more networking opportunities with him through these channels!