Qatar National Library, in collaboration with the Ministry of Culture and Sports, recently concluded an intensive training programme for a delegation of conservation specialists from Iraq.
The sessions focused on preserving documentary heritage in libraries and cultural institutions in the Middle East.
The training, which was also attended by library specialists from the Ministry of Culture and Sports, was hosted by the library in its role as the International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions (IFLA) Regional Preservation and Conservation Centre (PAC) for Arab Countries and the Middle East.
Experts from the library shared best practices during a series of practical sessions focusing on the science of conserving and preserving the manuscripts and collections of heritage libraries.
Participants also got the chance to experiment with the latest equipment and technologies in the library’s Conservation Lab, which are used in the restoration, maintenance and study of such collections.
Stephane Ipert, Preservation and Conservation manager at the library, said: “We continue to provide experts from the wider region with the latest skills and knowledge to preserve valuable heritage material in their institutions. It was a pleasure to work with Qatar’s Ministry of Culture and Sports to deliver this training programme for our colleagues from a number of cultural institutions in Iraq.
“In our role as IFLA’s Regional Preservation and Conservation Centre for the Arab region, we welcome collaboration with institutions in Qatar and beyond to work with us to find sustainable solutions for preserving the rich documentary heritage of this region.”
The training programme also included theoretical lectures on the importance of preserving Islamic manuscripts and the digitisation of heritage collections; a detailed explanation of digitisation processes conducted at the library; risk management and evaluation in libraries; and the key elements that should be available in the evaluation and response plans.
The library hosted a training programme for experts from Jordan in June in collaboration with the Unesco Office in Amman, while a training programme for a group of Tunisian experts is currently under way in co-operation with Qatar’s Ministry of Culture and Sports.