International Relations Committee Annual Report
Wil Roestenburg
Special Libraries Association Annual Conference 2004

Dear colleagues,

I'm sorry I'm not able to attend this year's conference. I couldn't convince my boss hard enough and he wouldn't let me go, because my company needed me for some big project, that will have a Go/No Go decision on June 30. But I know, part of the reason is the need for cost-reductions that my company is facing. Not only my company, I think this cost reductions are an international issue in itself. And those cost reductions was giving a lot of trouble too, we were all so very busy with so many things, that the IRC - issues didn't get full attention all the time.

When I was moderating the "News research without borders" panel, earlier this year, I contacted several non-US colleagues to find out if they were planning to go to Nashville. But at that moment nobody was certain about that and nobody could promise to have a role in the panel. That was a frustrating situation, because I knew exactly what was going on and how difficult it was to get an agreement, I was dealing with the same issue.

Thanks to Jennifer Evert and Laura Soto-Barra the panel could be continued with Joan Sweeney, Dana Gordon and Madeline Cohen. I hope you all had a good session this morning and I also hope there will be a follow up next year in Toronto. Maybe with more international attendees, if we succeed in convincing our bosses and finding the funds.

Part of the arguments could be collected in the next months. One of the ideas for next year is to have a follow up on the "Best Practices Survey", that was held by Teresa Leonard and Laura Soto-Barra, in preparing the Poynter Seminar "Mission critical", earlier this year. The survey was returned by a small group of international colleagues and the results were inspiring the idea of having a worldwide survey done, the more response, the better. Our suggestion is to support this idea and to have a "International Best Practices Survey" done in 2004 / 2005.

When I was attending the Poynter seminar and talking with P. Pohlmann, we discussed the idea of having more people from abroad at Poynter seminars. Another idea was to get the Poynter-trainings done in Europe again and maybe in other continents, as happened in the '90's. So far this idea didn't get a follow up, but all ideas and suggestions are very welcome.

One last remark that also has to do with international exchange. In March I posted a message to several colleagues, from a Dutch student, looking for a temporary placement in a newslibrary, in the USA or Canada. So far, this didn't work out. She is still after a temporary placement, I attached her letter again, so it can be distibuted to the News Division members in Nashville.

Dear colleagues, I wish you all are attending "the best conference ever" and I hope to be able to come to Toronto next year,

Warm regards,

Wil Roestenburg

Special Libraries Association 2004 Annual Conference
SLA News Division Home

Last Updated: 11/23/04