Posted on October 02, 2016

Qatar National Library (QNL), in cooperation with the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) Doha Office and the Qatar National Commission to UNESCO, celebrated the first International Day for Universal Access to Information on 28thSeptember.

QNL and UNESCO celebrate 1 [].JPGThe event focused on the importance of access to information to build inclusive knowledge-based societies through the preservation of knowledge and the safeguarding of documentary material in Qatar. It was open to the public and was held at Georgetown University School of Foreign Service in Qatar (GU-Q). The celebration featured a live demonstration of the digitisation process used by QNL to digitise rare documentary materials, as well as a presentation about QNL’s Digital Library and the Library’s Open Access Author Fund.

Dr Claudia Lux, Project Director of Qatar National Library, said: “QNL is honoured to have teamed up with UNESCO Doha Office to celebrate this important day, which represents one of the library’s core values; QNL is committed to providing the local community with free access to a wide range of information resources, whether currently in the digital form or in digital and print forms in the future.”

Dr Anna Paolini, UNESCO Representative to the Arab States of the Gulf and Yemen and Director of UNESCO Doha Office,added: “The International Day for Universal Access to Information is an occasion to celebrate and further develop the potential of information to help meet the objectives of the Sustainable Development Goals for 2030, and, in particular,the SDG target of 16.10, which calls for ensuring public access to information and protection of fundamental freedoms.”

QNL and UNESCO celebrate 2 [].jpg

DrHamda Al Sulaiti, Secretary General of Qatar National Commission to UNESCO, added: “The celebration is part of UNESCO’s efforts to promote universal access to information and knowledge, to ensure that the world's invaluable documentary heritage belongs to alland to assist member states in harnessing the new opportunities of the information age to create equitable societies.”

This year marks the inaugural International Day for Universal Access to Information, as per the resolution adopted by the 38th session of UNESCO General Conference in November 2015. As a member of Qatar Foundation for Education, Science and Community Development (QF), QNL supports QF’s mission to unlock human potential by preserving the nation’s heritage for future generations.