Call for Papers: Open Sessions

Reference and Information Services Section


"Storytelling for Sustainability and Solidarity"

[Deadline extended to: 20 February 2017]

The IFLA Reference and Information Services Section invites proposals for papers to be presented at the session “Storytelling for Sustainability and Solidarity.”

As librarians, we know the importance of reference and information services, but do our users, our patrons, our funders, our non-librarian managers, or our potential clients? What stories do we tell them to prove our value?

How do you tell the story of the reference and information services at your library? How do you create a narrative about the value of these services to your community, whether that community is a neighborhood, a campus, a government agency, a non-profit charity, or a company? How can storytelling bring in more people to use your reference and information services? How do we tell a story that makes a point?

It’s not only about crafting a convincing narrative, a gripping story, and it’s definitely not about story hour for children. Also important is what technology you use to tell your story. The oral tradition of storytelling has been, at least partially, subsumed by technology. What technologies contribute to the story of reference and information services in your library? Do you have the opportunity to tell your story in person? Or should Flickr, Tumblr, Pinterest, Instagram, or another medium be the better choice?

We invite formal papers with examples of how storytelling highlights your reference and information services. We also want to provide the opportunity for more informal storytelling. If you’d like to tell a story rather than present a formal paper, we encourage you to give us an outline.


All proposals must be received by 6 February 2017 the extended deadline: 20 February 2017.

Please submit a 260 word proposal or story outline via this link to our online form

Important deadlines

  • 20 February 2017: Deadline for submitting Proposals for Papers/Story Outlines
  • 10 March 2017: Successful Speakers will be notified, and IFLA forms completed by RISS and the Speakers
  • 14 April 2017: Deadline for Abstract of Paper – to be approximately 300 words
  • 22 May 2017: Deadline for submission of completed Paper/Story Outline to RISS. The paper/story should be no more than 3000 words in length. The paper/story should be in one of the IFLA official languages, but the conference language is English. If the paper is in any of the other official IFLA languages than English, an accompanying translation in English must be attached.
  • 19 June 2017: Deadline for submitting any Power Point slides that will be used in the presentation.

Proposed papers must be original and not have been published elsewhere.

Please note

At least one of the paper’s authors must be present to deliver a summary of the paper during the program in Wrocław, Poland. Abstracts should only be submitted with the understanding that the expenses of attending the conference will be the responsibility of the author(s)/presenter(s) of accepted papers.

All papers that are presented at the WLIC 2017 will be made available online via the IFLA Library under the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 license.

Authors of accepted papers must complete the IFLA Authors’ Permission Form.

All expenses, including registration for the conference, travel, accommodation etc., are the responsibility of the authors/presenters. No financial support can be provided by IFLA, but a special invitation letter can be issued to authors.

Congress Participation Grants

List of opportunities for support is available on our Conference Participation Grants webpage.