Can Brussels Tell Us How to Run Our Libraries? ....And Should We Care?

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Joanna Yeomans, Director of EBLIDA, explains how library services are affected at a European level and how libraries can work to influence future legislation.

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Can Brussels Tell Us How to Run Our Libraries? ....And Should We Care?

  1. 1. Can Brussels tell us how to run our libraries? …. And should we care? Joanne Yeomans Director, EBLIDA (European Bureau of Library, Information and Documentation Associations) www.eblida.org eblida@eblida.org
  2. 2. The EU’s influence  % of UK legislation decided  Education at EU level  Adult learning  EU influences the UK  Research assessment government and vice versa  Open Access  Information Society  Culture  Legislation – laws and  Inclusion – disabled, aging regulations population, migrants, ethnic  Policy enforcement and minorities, e-inclusion guidance  Copyright  Funding – direct and  Contracts indirect  VAT  Plus many others… 7-9 June 2010 CILIPS Annual Conference 2010, Glasgow
  3. 3. What are politicians talking about that will affect libraries in the near future?  Legislation  Copyright revision for the digital era?  Piracy and “theft” of intellectual property, illegal downloads and “3-strikes”? (e.g. UK’s Digital Economy Bill)  Web privacy?  Policy  Culture: promoting access to culture - books, art, music, images, museums, etc  Google & Europeana (European Digital Library) – digitization and cross-border services  i2010 – to develop a European digital economy  Lifelong learning, skills  Inclusion: especially e-inclusion – participation in online society  Funding  Lifelong learning, support and services  Inclusion, training for e-inclusion, services for excluded members of society  Culture, digitization, innovation  Employment, training, links with business and industry, etc 7-9 June 2010 CILIPS Annual Conference 2010, Glasgow
  4. 4.  Can Brussels tell us how to run our libraries?  They will have a big influence on what we do.  Can we influence what they tell us?  Yes we can!  All of us: individuals, libraries, Library Associations, EBLIDA  Should we influence them?  Yes we must!  Otherwise we risk others telling them what libraries want. 7-9 June 2010 CILIPS Annual Conference 2010, Glasgow
  5. 5. So…  How do we influence them?  A little about how the EU works… 7-9 June 2010 CILIPS Annual Conference 2010, Glasgow
  6. 6. So…  EU structure 7-9 June 2010 CILIPS Annual Conference 2010, Glasgow
  7. 7. UK Government How the EU works UK Ministers Head of State Brussels MEPs Permanent Representatives European Council European European Council of the EU Commission Parliament European Union DGs Committees Parties Units 7-9 June 2010 EU countries, organisations, citizens CILIPS Annual Conference 2010, Glasgow
  8. 8. UK Government UK Ministers Head of State Brussels MEPs Permanent Representatives European Council European Council 2 per country +2 European European Council of the EU European European EU Commission Commission Parliament Parliament Council of per EU Voting the The 34,000 736 population EU DGs Committees Parties The EU makes decisions Units about policy and funding 7-9 June 2010 EU countries, organisations, citizens CILIPS Annual Conference 2010, Glasgow
  9. 9. UK Government UK Gov UK Ministers Ministers Depending on Head of State subject Permanent Brussels MEPs Permanent Representatives Advise Representatives Civil servants European Council European European EU Commission Parliament Council of the EU DGs Committees Parties The Council of the EU and the Units European Parliament are the decision-makers 7-9 June 2010 EU countries, organisations, citizens CILIPS Annual Conference 2010, Glasgow
  10. 10. UK Government European Parliament UK Ministers Head of State MEPs Permanent Brussels MEPs 72 UK Representatives European Council European European European EU Commission Parliament Parliament Council of the EU 736 DGs Committees Parties Committees Parties 22 7+1 The Council of the EU and the Units European Parliament Are the decision-makers 7-9 June 2010 EU countries, organisations, citizens CILIPS Annual Conference 2010, Glasgow
  11. 11. UK Government UK: Catherine Ashton, European Vice-President UK Commission of the EC Ministers Head of State Brussels MEPs Permanent Representatives European Council European European European EU Commission Commission Parliament Council of the EU 27 Commissioners Directorate Generals DGs Committees Parties 24 departments The European Commission Units does the work 7-9 June 2010 EU countries, organisations, citizens CILIPS Annual Conference 2010, Glasgow
  12. 12. UK Government All these should be influenced UK Ministers Head of State Brussels MEPs Permanent Representatives European Council European European EU Commission Parliament Council of the EU DGs Committees Parties Units 7-9 June 2010 EU countries, organisations, citizens CILIPS Annual Conference 2010, Glasgow
  13. 13. UK Government EBLIDA tries to influence these UK Ministers Head of State Brussels MEPs Permanent Representatives European Council European European Council of the EU Commission Parliament Council of the EU European Union DGs Committees Parties Units National Library Associations try to influence these 7-9 June 2010 EU countries, organisations, citizens CILIPS Annual Conference 2010, Glasgow
  14. 14. What is needed to influence them?  Enthusiasm  Evidence:  Information and data.  Case studies.  What you want.  Presentation designed for the audience  Get to know the audience/target and design your information accordingly.  If you can keep track of news, offer information related to relevant events.  Relationships  Don’t think of one-off meetings, develop relationships.  Offer expert advice if appropriate.  Ask for information, don’t just give it – they are servants of UK citizens. 7-9 June 2010 CILIPS Annual Conference 2010, Glasgow
  15. 15. What methods can be used to influence?  General updating  Distributing information leaflets, news, data, etc.  Meetings with individuals, invitations to events.  Particular topics  Position papers and campaigns - from libraries alone or from cross-interest groups.  Meetings with individuals.  Particular responses  Written responses to EU consultations.  Representation at meetings and in expert groups.  Meetings with individuals.  All of us can engage at any level – local, national, European.  You don’t need to do everything! 7-9 June 2010 CILIPS Annual Conference 2010, Glasgow
  16. 16. What EBLIDA does  EBLIDA – the European Bureau of Library, Information and Documentation Associations.  Set up in 1992 with a strong copyright focus (at that time).  Members are Library Associations (LAs) and individual libraries (voluntary membership with membership fee).  Members in all 27 EU states plus 6 other (mainly European) countries.  Executive Committee of 10 European Country representatives.  Expert Groups arranged around EU subjects.  On behalf of members:  Perform lobbying for libraries at the EU – on all library-related topics.  Help share information on EU and other topics of interest among members.  Organise meetings and events to share best practice, news, etc.  1.6 employed staff.  125,000 EUR annual budget. 7-9 June 2010 CILIPS Annual Conference 2010, Glasgow
  17. 17. EBLIDA’s activities  Experts Groups – to develop expertise on EU topics so that libraries can react when necessary.  Write position papers and promote the work of libraries.  Write responses to EU consultations on behalf of libraries.  Collect data for the European Commission.  Meet MEPs from relevant Committees and relevant Commission staff to put forward the views of libraries. 7-9 June 2010 CILIPS Annual Conference 2010, Glasgow
  18. 18. What you can do  Library Association  Develop action plans for communicating outside the library world.  Feed information to the MEPs, EU office, Permanent Representatives to the EU, etc about what libraries in the UK/Scotland do and what they need.  Make contact and get regular meetings with MPs and MEPs to tell them what libraries do and why they should be supported.  Invite them to events.  Research and think about what interests your contacts (e.g.social inclusion, employment, economy, etc) and try to frame the library in terms they will care about.  Watch the EU news and try to relate your communication to what’s going on.  Individual  Contact your MEP or MP.  Volunteer to help CILIPS in this area.  Develop your own expertise in an area that interests you by reading and keeping up to date. 7-9 June 2010 CILIPS Annual Conference 2010, Glasgow
  19. 19. If you want to read more… UK and Scotland links with the EU  European Commission in the UK: includes contact for Scottish Office  List of Scottish MEPs  The Scottish Government’s EU Office in Brussels  UK Permanent Representation to the EU: Represents the UK’s interests in the European Council. The representatives for Information society and Copyright are listed under “Competitiveness and Markets”  UK Office of the European Parliament:: Raises awareness of what the EU is doing and helps makes links with organisations and the European Parliament  Scotland Europa: Organization that helps Scottish organizations network in the European Union EU bodies  European Commission’s DG Information Society  European Commission’s DG Culture  European Parliament’s Committee on Culture and Education (CULT) European Organisations  EBLIDA newsletter: news collected by the EBLIDA Director for EBLIDA members  Open Rights Group: UK organisation representing citizens’ rights in the digital age 7-9 June 2010 CILIPS Annual Conference 2010, Glasgow
  20. 20. Should we care?  Politics decides funding, policy and the future.  Put it another way…  Do we believe libraries should exist in the future? 7-9 June 2010 CILIPS Annual Conference 2010, Glasgow
  21. 21. Thank you Joanne Yeomans Director, EBLIDA (European Bureau of Library, Information and Documentation Associations) www.eblida.org Joanne.yeomans@eblida.org 7-9 June 2010 CILIPS Annual Conference 2010, Glasgow

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