Monday, January 9, 2023
A fruitful discussion and exchange on past, present, and future trends and challenges for university libraries
Fall seminar 2022

From 13 to 14 December 2022, more than 100 attendees from South Africa to Sweden and from Gdańsk to Montreal came together for the two-day fall seminar of the International Association of University Libraries (IATUL).

Dr Rafael Ball, Director of the ETH Library Zurich, and Dr Anna Wałek, President of IATUL, welcomed all participants to wintery Zurich in the ETH Zurich Audimax, the main lecture hall of ETH Zurich’s historic main building.

During the two-day event, library leaders, information specialists, publisher representatives and many other professionals devoted their time to topics such as the transformation of scientific publishing, scholarly communication, confidence in research, bibliometrics, research evaluation, and awareness and innovation in science. Taking place in the representative ETH Zurich Audimax, the venue offered a perfect background and stage and served as an inspiring site for all participants.

Day one of the fall seminar was shaped by insightful presentations and lively, thought-provoking discussions on societal and technological trends as well as current and new tools and technologies. The topics included transformation of scientific publishing, library–user connections, scholarly communication, the value of library collections and the potential role of libraries regarding trust in science. Additionally, an interactive and participatory workshop in the afternoon focused on participants’ ideas, wishes and inspiration for future events and offerings by IATUL. The first day was topped off with a joint dinner for presenters and participants that provided additional time for networking and exchange.

The second day of the seminar focused on the topics of research evaluation, scientometrics and awareness in science, as well as future challenges and technologies in the library and publishing world. Once again, expert presentations, inspiring discussions and new ideas about the tasks and role of university libraries were in focus. Day two was rounded off by Julien Roche (Bibliothèques universitaires et learning center, Lille, France), who is currently serving as president of LIBER, the Association of European Research Libraries, with a talk on the role of strategic innovation for a university and its library.

Once again, the IATUL Fall Seminar 2022 demonstrated that IATUL offers an influential and inclusive community for leaders of university libraries and research libraries worldwide. The fall seminar provided a venue for fruitful discussion and exchange on past, present, and future trends and challenges for university libraries.