LIBER Welcomes New President: Jeannette Frey of BCU Lausanne

Posted: 05-07-2018 Topics: Annual Conference Strategy
Jeannette Frey, LIBER’s new president.

At LIBER’s 47th Annual Conference, Jeannette Frey, Director of the Bibliothèque Cantonale et Universitaire (BCU) Lausanne, was appointed as LIBER’s 12th President.

She is carrying on the work done by Kristiina Hormia-Poutanen of the National Library of Finland, who served as LIBER President from 2014-2018 and was the first female President in LIBER’s history.

“My priorities in the two next years will be to put in place the best possible framework for the discussion on the implementation of Open Science infrastructures, as European Open Science Cloud, and around Open Data,” she said in her acceptance speech at LIBER 2018.

The appointment of a new LIBER President was one of three changes to LIBER’s Executive Board during the 2018 Meeting of Participants. LIBER libraries also appointed Julien Roche, Director of Libraries at the University of Lille, as Vice-President and Lars Burman of Uppsala University Library as a member of the Executive Board.

In her opening address to the audience at LIBER 2018, Ms Frey said she would continue to focus on the implementation of Open Science, and to help libraries address the challenges associated with new technologies such as artificial intelligence.

Read her speech in full below.

Dear Colleagues,

Thank you for your trust in me, I’m really honored to accept this position as LIBER president. I’ll do my best to live up to your trust and, as Hans said to me, ‘take care of LIBER’. I do not expect it to be simple. Our research libraries are facing the 4th Industrial Revolution and the challenges are many and heavy.

LIBER was founded almost 50 years ago, at a time when research libraries were facing the first wave of computerization. In the meantime, we have successfully mastered the waves of digitization, and the arrival of the electronic native publication, and we have been major players in the Open Access movement. My predecessors have been challenged to adapt LIBER to this fast evolution, first by stabilizing the organization, with the creation of the job of executive director, then by creating the LIBER Office. I take the opportunity here to thank them for their hard and enduring engagement all over these years.

In the years to come, the challenges will continue to be intense and interesting. On the one hand, we are moving from Open Access to Open Science, which also includes Citizen Science. We had quite a debate about it at our World Café about our strategic plan in 2017. Many of you voted for, and against, Citizen Science on this occasion. These debates within LIBER are very important because they witness the dynamism of the research libraries, and also the plurality of opinions and positions that may exist in our different contexts. LIBER is – and should continue to be an inclusive organisation where all these opinions can be expressed, heard and after a process of ripening, leads to innovative common solutions.

My priorities in the two next years will be to put in place the best possible framework for the discussion on the implementation of Open Science infrastructures, as European Open Science Cloud, and around Open Data. Open data will logically lead us to big data. And big data necessarily needs Text & Data Mining, a subject we defended for years in the context of the European copyright reform. And TDM is key to the development of artificial intelligence.

Are we, research libraries, prepared to step into the world of artificial intelligence? What position do we have, when facing this new challenge? Which role will we play in this evolution – or revolution? We asked ourselves a lot of these questions during our work on the new LIBER strategy. I would like to develop these questions hand in hand with you, dear LIBER members, colleagues, through our working groups, our steering committees, the LIBER Board and the LIBER Office. Together, we can face these challenges. It is all the more important that these questions will have to be answered in a rather restricted financial context.

So, I’m happy to accept the mission of presiding over LIBER in the idea to optimize our collaboration within LIBER, and to further consolidate our network. Thank you again for your trust!

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