INFORMATION AS THE FOUNDATION FOR SOCIAL SOLIDARITY
THE ROLE OF PARLIAMENTARY LIBRARIES AND RESEARCH SERVICES

IFLAPARL Pre-Conference, Warsaw, 15-18 August 2017 

On behalf of the Sejm Library and the Senate Analyses, Documentation and Correspondence Office, we have the pleasure of inviting you to the 33rd IFLAPARL Pre-Conference, which will be held in Warsaw between 15 and 18 August 2017. The conference subject is Information as the foundation for social solidarity: the role of parliamentary libraries and research services.

Access to information and the knowledge of well-informed citizens are a prerequisite for a democratic state, which in turn constitutes a guarantee of social solidarity. The knowledge of the law-making and the legislation in force is a special one: it both fosters civic education and shapes societies’ legal culture. This results in tasks for parliamentary libraries and research services.

The knowledge of law and legislative procedures raises awareness of rights and obligations, enables participation in the law-making process and determines citizens’ activity in the public sphere. Moreover, the tools we create help receive feedback on law application and its social consequences. Thanks to the transparency and clarity of the information, citizens feel encouraged to join public debates and exercise democratic oversight.

Parliamentary libraries and research teams provide information in various forms and scopes, depending on a given parliament’s traditions, political culture and experience. As they are tasked with parliamentary information management, they also serve a broader purpose which fits squarely with the parliamentary communication function. This role includes both participating in the communication process by way of ensuring information transfer and interacting with citizens by taking in their feedback and supporting their involvement. IFLA enables a global exchange of such expertise and best practices. We hope that the Warsaw debate will present an opportunity to share knowledge and enhance the network of contacts, thus strengthening the professionalism of activities taken by parliamentary libraries and research services.

We wish you an interesting and fruitful debate!