Call for Papers — Open Sessions

Women, Information, & Libraries Special Interest Group

  • 18 January 2018, 10:00
Theme: "Collections, Ethics, Perspective, and Voice: The Importance of Context"

[Deadline extended to: 1 March 2018]


IFLA Women, Information, & Libraries Special Interest Group (WILSIG) is seeking proposals for papers to be presented at its Open Session at the 2018 IFLA World Library and Information Congress/ 84th General Conference and Assembly, 24-30 August 2018, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.


Around the world, libraries are beginning to address the ways in which established methods of collecting, cataloguing, preserving, sharing information about and giving access to resources perpetuates cultural bias, patriarchal thinking, racism, colonialism, among other issues and structures and therefore informs the collection itself. 

There are numerous issues to address, including but not limited to: how does cultural bias play into building collections; how to build relationships with local communities; at what level to start the conversation; who has primary responsibility for addressing issues with subject access and classifications such as the Dewey Decimal System or LCSH; the choices that curators make when presenting collections online and off; the ways in which technology hides decision making and discovery; staff training, recruiting, and retention of a diverse workforce; the use of Indigenous research methods; addressing closed and inherited collections which bring up issues around restitution and repatriation.

In this open session, we are soliciting papers that will showcase research, activities, and real-world examples of the complexities around these issues and share experiences and best practices around this robust, and broad topic.

For further questions or clarifications, please reach out to WILSIG Co-Convenors:

Mathilde Koskas


Evviva Weinraub

Submission Guidelines

Proposal for the Open Session must be submitted by 15 February 2018 the extended deadline of 1 March 2018 and should clearly include:

  • Title of the proposed presentation,
  • Abstract of proposed paper, no more than 500 words, in English,
  • Curriculum vitae of the author(s),
  • Contact details and professional affiliation(s).

Selection of papers is based on the abstract, and presenters will be notified whether they have been successful by 1 April 2018.

The abstracts will be reviewed by Programme Committee members of Women, Information, and Libraries SIG.

  1. The full paper is due by 15 June 2018 and must be an original submission not presented or published elsewhere.
  2. Both abstracts and full papers should be submitted as a MS Word file by e-mail.
  3. The author(s) should include their full contact details and brief biographical notes.
  4. The language of the session is expected to be English. However, presenters may also give their talk in any of the IFLA working languages. Simultaneous translation will not be provided; therefore, presenters are strongly encouraged to provide the PowerPoint in English to facilitate understanding of the ideas presented.


All proposals must be received by 1 March 2018.

Please email your abstract to:

Important dates

1 March 2018 – All proposals must be received;
1 April 2018 – Successful candidates will be notified;
15 June 2018 – Full paper and author permission form due.

Presentation at the Conference

A maximum of 15 minutes will be allowed for the presentation of each paper during the joint session; the full written paper is not to be read. It is strongly recommended that the presentation is supported by a visual element such as a short video clip or PowerPoint, Prezi, or other presentation software.

Please note

At least one of the paper’s authors must be present to deliver a summary of the paper during the program in Malaysia. 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 2018 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.