Partner Libraries

Partner Libraries of the Chancellery of the National Council of the Slovak Republic

 

The aim of this Slovak project, which started in 2002, was to make better access and to provide more information about the work of the Slovak parliament to the public. The idea came from the Scottish pattern, where the project Partner libraries has existed already for several years. We could study within the Know-how-fund project how partner libraries function and help people in Scotland to be informed about the work of the parliament. The aim of our project was also to help the application of the Free Access of Information Act in praxis in Slovakia.

The project “Partner Libraries” is a part of a long-term project called “Information for the Slovak Citizens” coordinated by the Slovak Association for the Local Democracy Support with the help of the Matra Program of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Dutch Kingdom.

Three organizations participate in the project Partner Libraries: the Chancellery of the National Council of the Slovak Republic, the Association of the Local Democracy Support and the Slovak National Library.

The Slovak National Library determined in the first period 18 libraries as “the partner libraries” according to the place they are located and according to their technical equipment. These libraries from all Slovak regions gained the so-called status „Partner Libraries of the Chancellery of the National Council of the Slovak Republic“. The librarians of these libraries are trained to provide information about our parliament´s work to the public on a high quality level. The libraries are able to provide information at the local level with the help of the trained professional staff.

The coordinator of the project is the Chancellery of the National Council of the Slovak Republic under the auspices of the Parliamentary Library. The Chancellery provides for the partner libraries:

•  printed documents /e.g. the Slovak Constitution, The Rules of Procedure, the CD-ROM about the Slovak Parliament, the book How the Slovak Parliament works, information materials about the Slovak Parliamentary Institute and European Union institutions, Members of parliament book, short-hand writings, the magazine Parliamentary Kurier, etc./,

•  3-days seminars and trainings for the librarians of the partner libraries with the help of the Association for the Local Democracy Support and the Slovak National Library. The Chancellery of the National Council has special premises out of the city, where these seminars can be organized. It is possible for us to provide accommodation andthe rooms for the presentations with all necessary technical equipment for more than 100 participants:

- in December 2002 the first seminar was organized with the main topics: How to Use Internet Web Page of the Slovak Parliament, the services provided by the Parliamentary Library, the Department of Analysis, the Information Center for the Public and Parliamentary Archives (the presentations were provided by the Chancellery of the NC SR); Free Access to Information Act and Its Use in Slovakia (the presentations were provided by the Association of the Local Democracy Support);

- in April 2003 there was the second seminar with the main topics: The Right for Information in the Slovak Republic and the Relationship among the Slovak and European Union Institutions. The participants were informed about all important EU institutions and their sources of information (like the European Council, European Commission, Council of the EU, European Parliament, European Court of Justice, European Audit Court, European Central Bank, European Convention, and others).

- In November 2003 the third seminar for this group of 18 partner libraries was organized. The main themes of the seminar were: The Digital Library as the Source of Information, Information resources about the Use of the EU Structural and Cohesion Funds, Exchange of Practical Experiences in the Work of the Partner Libraries, the Methods of Partner Libraries Work.

• The Slovak National Library proposed in 2004 to engage 18 more Slovak libraries into the project. The Chancellery of the National Council of the Slovak Republic organized in cooperation with the Association for the Local Democracy Support three more seminars in 2004 for this group of the libraries. The topics were the same as for the first group. All seminars and activities were evaluated at the last seminar for the librarians of all 36 partner libraries in September 2004.

Nowadyas all 36 partner libraries are able to receive information on demand about the Slovak parliament´s work through e-mail, by the telephone or personally from the Communication Department with the Public and from the Parliamentary Library.

The Chancellery of the National Council of the Slovak Republic invited the librarians from these 36 libraries for another seminar dealing with the parliament´s work and its web page in November 2011. The libraries are regularly given all necessary information materials and writen documents about the Slovak parliament´s workand the plan is to organize seminars regularly once a year.