Qatar National Library (QNL) has become an official sustaining member of the Digital Library Federation (DLF), a global organization comprising 185 institutions committed to building and improving digital librarianship. The invitation-only membership comes in recognition of QNL’s ongoing commitment to the digital preservation of Arab heritage and culture.
Membership of DLF will enable QNL to work with the world’s top libraries to share best practices, implement innovative library strategies, and strengthen the library culture locally.
Dr. Sohair Wastawy, Executive Director of QNL, said: “As steward of Qatar’s national heritage, QNL promotes research and insight into the region’s culture and history. By joining the DLF we are supporting researchers to better understand the Arabian Gulf, as well as working with institutions around the world to strengthen digital libraries.”
Bethany Nowviskie, Director of the DLF, said: “We are delighted to welcome Qatar National Library as our newest member. The DLF community will benefit immensely from intellectual and technical exchange with experts at QNL, and joint projects like the Digital Library of the Middle East (DLME) will provide an opportunity for meaningful collaboration in service to our common goals.”
The invitation to join the DLF is an acknowledgment of QNL’s commitment to digitizing its extensive collections and making them available worldwide through the Qatar Digital Library (QDL). The QDL enables researchers, academics, and users worldwide to access QNL’s collection of historical archives, photographs, sound recordings, and manuscripts relating to the people, politics, and customs of the Arabian Gulf. Anyone with a specific interest in the region can uncover insights into its customs, ancient trade history, and Islamic scholarship through the free worldwide portal.
In addition to curating the QDL, QNL, a member of Qatar Foundation for Education, Science and Community Development, is a founding partner of the DLME, a collaborative effort that aspires to create a sustainable digital environment for the cultural heritage of the Middle East and North Africa region. With both initiatives, and now through DLF membership, QNL promotes digital stewardship through research data management and preservation services. This will encourage co-operation between digital library practitioners and other sectors.
As part of the Council on Library and Information Resources, DLF supports research, learning, and social justice through the design and application of digital library technologies. As a DLF member, QNL will work with other members of the federation on the development of community-driven frameworks for policy advocacy, professional standards, ethics, issues of representation and diversity, labor, inclusion, and other matters.