5th Congress of Iranian Information science experts: Achievements and Demands

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Although the Fifth Congress of Information Science Specialists kicked off in July 2019, in
contrast to the previous congresses, its executive procedures still were behind schedule.
However, since the early days, it was tried to pave the way for maximum participation
of interested ones in various programs of the fifth congress through a precise planning
in steering, executive and scientific committees. The general direction was set when the
congress’s theme, “We and Future: Emerging Developments in Information Sciences,
Libraries and Archives”, was determined. The mission was highlighted through a memo,
Intelligent Movement across the Risky Route of the Future and using the same note and
other initial media activities the experts and specialists were asked to help the congress
and to make its discussions more useful and to fortify its scientific and professional
aspects through participating in pre-meetings and main sessions.
Now that more than a full month has passed from the date of holding the 5th congress, it
seems appropriate to highlight some achievements and demands of this event in order
to be recorded in the history and also to fulfill more pursues and to hold the 6 th congress
more magnificently.
Planning for holding congress’s pre-meetings with participation of universities, research
and professional organizations was one of measures which had been put atop agenda
like previous congresses. It took the congress out of the framework of a two-day event
in the year and made it a multi-month current in the space of the related major and
profession. Many valuable and important points were discussed in these pre-meetings,
which some of them were in the level of the national seminars, and they became
popularized on the same time. Holding such pre-meetings paved the way for discussing
about more serious debates across the two-day congress; especially this year four pre-
meetings were held in Razavi Khorasan and Fars Provinces, which diverted congress
programs from the capital city. We hope to witness more provincial meetings in the next
congresses and to strengthen the national dimension of the congress more than ever.
Maybe evaluation of achievements due to holding Congresses of Information Science
Specialists within past five years, especially the 5th one, is not an easy work and to
monitor the efficiency of this congress needs more time. However, it must be
considered that holding this event per se is an important achievement, which in turn is

followed by more dynamicity and jubilancy in the scientific and professional
organizations linked to the information science. The eye-catching presence of about
1000 people from universities, businesses, organizations and information industry in the
fifth congress may imply commitment and interest in development in this area.
The fifth congress was attended by 110 panelists including faculties, students,
businessmen, and managers from majors related to the information science and other
majors such as sociology, futurology, computer science, management, psychology and
other similar majors and helped us to point and discuss about different issues in an
inter-disciplinary space. These panelists belonged to 20 universities and 23 research
institutes and organizations of the country. It expects that the interaction between
specialists of various organizations and majors based on the pivot of information science
may result in more inter-disciplinary cooperation and theoretical and professional
development. Also, 25 managers in various levels participated in the congress meetings.
As the key speaker, the secretary of Supreme Council of the Cultural Revolution
participated in the inaugural ceremony and verbally promised to posit the problems and
challenges of this science in the supreme council. Other directors including deputies and
managers of National Library and Archives of Iran (NLAI), director general of IRIB’s
archives, chairman and deputies of IRANDOC, general director of cultural-artistic
department, camps and educational spaces of the Education Organization, director of
archives and media of Astan Quds Razavi, general director of monitoring, surveying and
future assessing of science and technology of Supreme Council of the Cultural
Revolution, secretary of healthcare of the Islamic Council Assembly, head of planning
and development of information science and knowledge management of Ministry of
Science and Technology, deputy of information and publishing development and
coordination department of Ministry of Health and Medical Education, directors of
libraries of universities and educational department directors were among decision
making managers who participated the congress very actively.
Given the discussions posited in the 5th congress (whose detailed reports have been
published in the website of the congress), some items can be considered as the
demands of the scientific and professional society and in charge individuals,
organizations and institutes can be asked to try more for fulfilling such demands.
 The first demand from authorities of Iranian Library and Information Science
Association (ILISA) can be this that we expect them to pursue discussions and

issue posited in the fifth congress and to facilitate their realization through
holding forums and meetings for making decisions and also through following the
congress current within the entire year. Also, the council is expected to create a
think tank, run by thinkers and stockholders, for monitoring the future
developments in this major and profession. For strengthening and supporting the
thinkers, the council can extend the website of recording experiences and ideas
of specialists of information science, which in turn can develop a condition in
which specialists can interact with the activists of the information industry.
 The second demand is from all members of the scientific and professional
community of information science, librarianship and archives to start change for
effective survival in the risky future. As it has been declared in most meetings of
the fifth congress, the changes procedure is very quick and the procedures which
would affect the information science are very diverse, so the risk of omission in
the case of inefficiency is very serious. For showing an effective presence in this
risky future, we need to deal with the changes and developments with an open
mind and to apply necessary alterations in libraries, archives and other
professional spaces as well as educational and research sectors in order to b able
to render useful and effective services to our audience community.
 The main meetings of the 5 th congress were held in days when the internet
connection has been cut for security reasons and it made very difficult holding
this congress. However, holding the congress in these days was accompanied
with the request of specialists of information science to keep and safeguard the
free access of people to data and scientific information. It is a serious demand
from the government and other decision making institutes in this field.
 In this congress, especially in two meetings of children libraries and libraries of
educational institutes, more attention to children and educational system was
asked for effective support of reading habits, it seems that we need to leave
superficial activities in the field of promoting reading in order to be able to start
some most pivotal and fundamental works in this regard. Changing the
educational system given the role of libraries and its information resources in the
process of formal education and also the necessity of paying attention to train
information literacy to children and students and making them accustomed with
reading since childhood are among the important demands to which the
education organization and other responsible organizations and individuals who
are working in the field of children education need to pay attention. These

organizations need to pursue the revival and strengthen of children and school
libraries and all of us need to play significant roles such as informing, warning and
helping in this regard.
 As a serious demand, it is expected that all libraries, especially the public ones, to
redefine their services to meet daily and emerging needs of people and also
based on technological capabilities and to provide a proper space for people to
take part in social activities as a dynamic social organization. Likewise, authorities
of other libraries such as national library and libraries of universities, given the
platform thinking, need to pave the way for the effective participation of
stockholders and also offering new and creative and affective services to them.
The stance of universities’ libraries should be enhanced and improved and full-
time professional managers should be recruited to start a constructive
development.
 It is expected that the increasing trend of recruiting non-specialist managers in
the specialized and professional organization to be ceased and recruiting aware
and specialized people to play some more constructive and effective roles to be
considered more than ever.
 For expanding the employment of the graduated ones there is a serious
demanding: when lose their specialized forces for any reason, libraries, archives
and other professional institutes need to recruit new forces based on transparent
and meritocratic criteria. It is natural that the side effects of unwise decisions in
this field would be felt by the society through evacuation of the professional
spaces and removal of cultural services. The weakening of the society’s culture is
gradual and its destructive power would be incremental. In this regard, the Guild
Studies Committee has conducted some proper studies in recent years and has
proposed various recommendations to the relevant organizations such as
Administrative and Recruitment Organization for occupational development. One
of the most important recommendations in the fifth congress was posited along
with the idea of establishing the information consulting services system.
Although it needs more contemplation, it can pave the way for the purposeful
presence of the graduated students of this course in the society for providing
effective information services to various walks of life (including academicians,
researchers, businessmen, craftsmen, managers and others). So, it is necessary to
conduct some effective measures in the field of academic educations and also in
the field of profession diplomacy area. Following other courses such as

psychology as role models, the council can accelerate this professional
development. The first step has been taken and we hope members of scientific
and professional communities materialize this demand through their
participation and recommending their viewpoints and perspectives.
 In the session of ethics of information in the fifth congress, the destructive role of
some of upstream documents, including circulars defined for improving the
faculties, to create some immoralities in the scientific and research community
and necessary warnings were given to the Ministry of Health and Medical
Education to reform this trend in order to prevent more harms in the future. Also
regarding training this course in two sessions of information science education
and medical libraries, the demand for applying new changes in rubrics of
information science and knowledge management and medical librarianship and
also creating new majors and trends was declared.
 As a serious demand, paying attention to people and their needs in archives
was posited in the fifth congress. Archives should not be only research
organizations anymore and should redefine themselves to serve people and their
needs. Archivists, as specialists of this area, are expected to propose proper
scientific solutions to meet people’s concerns, especially in regard to organizing
and protecting various sorts of family documents.
 Paying more attention to the international relations and more active
participation in the effective and strategic institutes and organizations,
particularly IFLA, were among other demands posited in the 5 th congress. In the
recent congress, ten senior authorities of IFLA and outstanding scientific councils
sent their messages and asked for more interaction and cooperation between
Iranian specialists and organization with their international counterparts. Despite
the valuable efforts, it is expected that Iranian specialists to play more important
roles in the international level, especially across the specialized committees and
workgroups.
 Paying more attention to the next generation of this occupation and course was
another demand posited in the fifth congress. Helping to improve the science,
skills and also intellectual and personality of students of this course through
strengthening the student scientific associations were among issues posited in
this congress and we hope that paying more attention to such associations will
help us to train more future-making students.

What reviewed in this short note were some of the most important demands posited in
the fifth congress. Most of these demands were posited in the early days of this
congress and then they were reflected in the mass media, including programs of the
National Media. This editorial was written to complete these activities and to conclude
the efforts made in this regard. It is natural to meet these demands all members of the
scientific and professional community are tasked with sparing no efforts and the council
is also committed to reflect these efforts as best as possible to the society through
congress of specialists of information and its other programs. I seize the opportunity
here and ask all interested people and stockholders to help the council to achieve its
goals.
Eventually, personally I appreciate all people who work for running the fifth congress,
especially Dr. Mehrnaz Khorasanchi, the executive secretary and members of steering,
executive and scientific committees and all sponsors. I also appreciate our colleagues in
the Lisna news agency who cover all activities of the 5 th congress comprehensively. I
hope to witness the continuance of the congress in the future and meeting of demands
of the scientific and professional members as best as possible.

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