UNESCO and Slovenia join forces to foster free exchange of information and knowledge
On 18 September, UNESCO Director-General, Irina Bokova, and the Minister of Education, Science, Culture and Sport of Slovenia, Dr Žiga Turk, signed an agreement for the establishment as a category 2 centre under the auspices of UNESCO in Maribor (Slovenia), of the Regional Centre for Library and Information Systems and current research information systems (IZUM).
Commending Slovenia’s strong action in support of the modernization of libraries in the Western Balkans and, more generally, across the wider SEE region, the Director-General underscored the fact that there are “many synergies between the activities of the newly established Centre and UNESCO, particularly in the areas of Open Access to scientific information and Open Educational Resources, as well as with other programmes supporting the preservation and sharing of information and knowledge”.
In his intervention during the signing ceremony, the Minister expressed his satisfaction with this important agreement, which also is a recognition of the excellent work done by IZUM over the years. “We are confident that the Centre will contribute to research and capacity-building in information science in the region,” said the Minister.
The ceremony took place in the presence of the Ambassador of the Republic of Slovenia to France and Permanent Delegate to UNESCO, H.E. Mr Veronika Stabej, as well as others members of the Delegation.
The Centre will collaborate, through national libraries, with countries in South-East Europe (SEE) with a view to fostering the free exchange of information and bibliographic records. It will co-ordinate the development and application of standards for computer support to meet the requirements of the shared bibliographic system and services in co-operation with the National Libraries of the countries participating in the COBISS network.
COBISS (Co-operative Online Bibliographic System and Services) is a platform for the national library information systems of Albania, Bulgaria, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Slovenia, Serbia and Montenegro.