United Nations Dag Hammarskjöld Library

View of the Parliament House, Canberra, Australia Workshop for United Nations Depository Librarians in Oceania
Canberra, Australia – Feb. 28 - Mar. 1, 2011

View photographs of the Workshop

The workshop was organized by the Dag Hammarskjöld Library, Outreach Division, Department of Public Information (DPI), in cooperation with the UN Information Centre in Canberra, Australia.

The objective of the two day programme was to gather fourteen UN depository librarians from Australia, Fiji, Federated States of Micronesia, New Zealand, Palau, Papua New Guinea and Samoa including a representative from the Finnish Parliamentary Library, Eduskunnan Kirjasto, two representatives from the Indian Parliament Library and the Information Assistant from the UN Information Centre in Canberra. to attend “UN Workshop for UN Depository Librarians in the Region of Oceania” discuss the change of depository libraries from passive collectors of UN documentation to active participants in promoting information on global issues.

The Facilitators (speakers) included representatives from the Dag Hammarskjöld Library of the United Nations and from UNIC Canberra, Australia.

The first day of the workshop started with an overview of the UN Depository Library Programme and highlighted depository libraries as a network of outreach partners. The rest of the day provided hands-on training in several research tools such as the UN Documentation Research Guide, UN Official Documents System, UNBISnet, UN-I-QUE and UN Member States on the Record.

The second day covered UN information resources in the legal, human rights, statistical and map fields. The unique features of each online tool were explored and search tips were demonstrated.

Group discussions on what the United Nations can do to assist depository libraries in Oceania and what can depository libraries do for the UN in that country were an important part of the programme.

In their evaluations, the participants provided positive feedback on the workshop. They found useful the hands-on sessions.

Outcome and Recommendations:

Participants shared ideas about possible outreach activities. The focus was on ideas that would promote interest in global UN issues and encourage the use of UN information for purposes of multiple groups.

Some of the ideas put forward include:

• Cooperation between UNIC, Canberra and Depository Libraries
• Displays of UN materials both printed and electronic
• Posting of UN information on the Library web site
• Promoting UN information resources through exhibits and events geared towards UN themes
• Conduct workshops on UN web site searching

This is the ninth workshop since 2006 that has discussed with depository libraries a change in the role of UN depository libraries to include a greater partnership role. The immediate feedback from all workshops has been favorable.

The UN Dag Hammarskjöld Library will follow up with participants to determine what impact the programmes have had in their management of the collections, their promotion of the information resources.

In conjunction with the 2010 biennial review of the depository library programme and the discussions from these workshops the DHL will create an action plan that will suggest possible changes to the distribution methods, propose improvements in the communications with Depository Libraries and increased and targeted partnerships.