Qatar National Library (QNL), a member of Qatar Foundation for Education, Science and Community Development, will host the annual Metropolitan Libraries (MetLib) conference MetLib 2016 Qatar from April 23 to 28.
The details of the conference were disclosed at a press conference held at the Student Centre of the Hamad Bin Khalif University yesterday. Saadi al-Said, director of administration and planning at QNL, and Dr Claudia Lux, project director QNL took part in the media briefing.  
Held for the first time in the Middle East and North Africa region, MetLib is organised by the Metropolitan Libraries Section of the International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions (IFLA). MetLib 2016 Qatar will be organised under the theme of ‘Pearls in the desert: unleashing potential’.
MetLib 2016 Qatar will discuss a number of topics relating to the role of public libraries in unleashing the potential of their patrons of all ages and types. It will also explore innovative services public libraries can adopt to help fulfil this role, the different partnerships that can lend support in this regard, community learning and unleashing the library staff potential through opportunities for professional and personal development.  
MetLib 2016 Qatar marks the first year the conference has received paper submissions from the Mena region.
The annual conference aims to provide an ideal platform for members of metropolitan and public libraries to share progressive ideas for the enhancement of the worldwide information services sector. It also envisions to  create an extensive and long-lasting knowledge-sharing network.
Alongside senior leadership of QNL, IFLA and other regional and international libraries, MetLib 2016 Qatar will be attended by librarians and industry professionals. They will provide key insights into what role libraries can play to unleash the potential of its patrons -children and adult alike-the community, as well as its own staff and how it can fulfil this role through innovative services and partnerships.
Delegates and industry practitioners will discuss an array of topics at the conference, including innovation in library services, community learning, developing the future through children and teen services, partnerships and staff development.
Formerly known as the Round Table of the International Association of Metropolitan Libraries (INTAMEL), the conference was held in Prague for the first time in 1966. Two years later, it was founded as a Round Table belonging to the Public Libraries Section of IFLA and since then, an annual conference has been held in many major cities around the world.
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