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Strong Waikato theme for Library Conference

The city of Hamilton will play host to the biggest gathering of library and information professionals in the country this week when around 550 delegates and exhibitors from New Zealand and overseas converge for the annual LIANZA conference.

The LIANZA (Library and Information Association of New Zealand Aotearoa) conference is being held at Claudelands from Sunday 20 October to Wednesday 23 October.

Conference Convenor, Associate University Librarian at the University of Waikato and former LIANZA President, Vye Perrone says the conference theme Wai-Ora, Wai-Māori, Waikato references the most significant landmark of the region, the Waikato River. 

“Libraries are powerful forces, and like rivers, they must be respected, understood and well-managed in order to continue to nourish and support their communities”.

“We have some highly regarded local and international speakers lined up to inform and challenge our thinking about libraries and our role as library and information professionals.”

“This is the first time the LIANZA Conference has been held in Hamilton since 1988, so we’re really thrilled to have this event back in our region and to deliver a strong Waikato presence in the programme from start to finish”.

Labour MP for Hauraki Waikato Nanaia Mahuta gives the first Keynote address following the Pōwhiri at Tūrangawaewae Marae and delegates will be welcomed to the event centre later that evening by Hamilton Mayor, Julie Hardaker, and University of Wakato Librarian, Ross Hallett.

Delegates will be treated to a Take Me to the River themed conference dinner as well as library tours to Hamilton City Library, Wintec Library, Waikato District Health Board Library and the University of Waikato Student Centre and Library.

As conference draws to a close on Wednesday, homegrown keynote speaker Professor Linda Tuhiwai Smith, University of Waikato Pro-Vice Chancellor Māori and Dean of the School of Maori and Pacific Development will give her address.  Professor Smith is a renowned researcher, leader and scholar who has inspired and mentored many Māori and non-Māori social scientists both nationally and internationally.

Also on the speaker’s bill are international guests Eli Neiburger, Associate Director for IT & Production at Ann Arbor District Library, Michigan; Dr Michael Stephens, Assistant Professor in the School of Library and Information Science at San Jose State University; Lorcan Dempsey, Vice President, Research & Chief Strategist at OCLC; Design Strategist Dr Penny Hagen and giant of the New Zealand online industry, Nathan Torkington.