Norwegian Library Association (NLA) is a non-profit, independent organisation aiming to promote and develop library and information services. NLA was founded in 1913.
Membership is open for all welcoming NLA’s aims, individuals and institutions alike. NLA counts politicians as well as writers and librarians among its individual members, and libraries, universities and municipalities among its institutional members. In 2010, NLA counts 3200 members, of which 2100 are individual members.
NLA’s objective is to be a forceful and unifying interest group for the Norwegian library and information services sector. NLA shall be the advocate and premise supplier for libraries at all levels of government.
Mode of Operation
NLA aims to reflect the geographical and political variations of its members, and carries out its work through a structure of local associations working on a regional level, special groups working within specific areas of interest, and various committees and divisions appointed by the Executive Committee.
NLA's modus operandi is based on the principal that both the organisations’ central and local associations, as well as the special interest groups, shall act according to the Action Program adopted by the NLA Congress.
NLA’s key priorities are:
- To argue and emphasize the importance of libraries in the democratic process and promote freedom of information and speech
- To ensure the principle of the free lending right, independent of technological and political changes in society
- To develop and strengthen libraries as promoters of knowledge, information and culture
- To develop and strengthen libraries in building and supporting education, and as an arena for learning, research and innovation.
- To promote an effective and robust library service of high quality.
- To ensure development and innovation in the Norwegian library sector, amongst others promoting the realisation of a Norwegian digital library
- To build alliances and co-operate with relevant national and international organisations within the fields of research, education and culture.
NLA is a member of several international organisations such as IFLA (International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions), EBLIDA (European Bureau of Library, Information and Documentation Associations) and Blue Shield. NLA cooperates with the Palestinian Libraries and Information Association (PLIA) and Malawi Library Association (MALA) through different projects, and has a good contact with the Romanian Library Association. NLA is the initiator and collaborator of several international projects, such as:
- Academic book production and distribution in Africa
- Advancement of librarianship in the third world
- Educational Foundation for African Librarian Students
- Student teaching practice from the Baltic countries
- Rebuilding the National Library of Sarajevo
- Support the education of librarians in Malawi
Scholarships and prizes
The Executive Committee grants yearly scholarships from NLA’s Educational Foundation. NLA awards the prize: Norwegian Library of the Year.
NLA publishes Bibliotekforum, which is the leading Norwegian professional and political branch journal for discussion of library-related topics and the dissemination of information, knowledge and developments. Bibliotekforum has ten issues per year.