A two-day international information landscape conference began at University of Sargodha on Thursday, aimed at building, connecting and sustaining libraries and societies in the digital era.

The conference, titled “Emerging Issues of Information Landscape” has been jointly organized by Department of Library and Information Sciences (LIS) Sargodha University, Pakistan Library Association (PLA) Punjab and the Higher Education Commission of Pakistan. The conference aims at providing an opportunity for LIS professionals to initiate a discourse around changing scenarios of information sector and to determine a way forward for LIS community in Pakistan.

The conference is based around three broad themes: Information Education, Information Literacy and Information Services. Corresponding to these themes, the programme of the conference has been divided into three technical sessions, apart from opening and closing sessions.

Addressing the conference through a video conferencing link, Dr Michael Seadle from Germany’s Humboldt University stressed on the need for extending information services from mere document to participatory information advisory service. He said information providers would have to perceive users problems and work at hand, identify reasons and motivation for information search and provide possible prescriptive knowledge by giving due regard to the value system and culture.

Dr Asim Qayyum from Charles Sturt University, Australia shared his thoughts on “moving beyond information and knowledge to wisdom in information landscapes”. He emphasized the importance of incorporating wisdom in daily and routine work of information professionals, and to highlight the importance of the community and stakeholders in any project.

Addressing the inaugural ceremony, PLA Punjab President Dr Khalid Mahmood said the conference would sensitize stake holders about the challenges of ever changing and evolving landscape of “information.” It would provide a platform to reflect upon the methods information professionals use to engage with emerging digital technology, he added.

Sargodha University Department of Library and Information Sciences Chairman Dr Haroon Idrees said the forum would prove itself in providing fresh insights into emerging interdisciplinary discourse of information management. “Traditional libraries cannot meet the requirements of fast information delivery and knowledge communication needs of the knowledge society. We must have to quickly adopt new ideas that offer our professionals opportunities for more learning and training to boost services for the society and more convenience to user communities,” he added.

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