A survey was created using the tool Survey Monkey to help the IAML Board gather information about the recent IAML conference, attendance at IAML conferences, and feedback about IAML in general. The survey included ten questions, of which some had multiple parts. Respondents had six weeks to complete it. A total of 295 people responded, and Survey Monkey produced a 31-page summary of results. An overview follows.
1. Did you attend the conference in Vienna?
• Yes – 116
• No – 175
A majority of respondents felt the programs were well coordinated in content and schedule, and were moderated properly. Thirty-four respondents thought the poster sessions were too hidden and difficult to engage with--double the number of people that said the poster sessions gave them interesting insights. Twenty people thought the program was overwhelming, and there were many comments about having too many sessions to choose from in some time slots.
2. I have attended IAML conferences:
Answer Options Response Percent Response Count
never 31% 98
1-3 times 37% 116
4-8 times 17% 53
9 or more times 15% 48
3. When you do attend a IAML conference, what are the benefits for you?
• The top responses were:
o Networking with colleagues – 95%
o Going to interesting sessions – 92%
o Keeping myself updated on the profession – 87%
o Refreshing myself and getting inspiration – 71%
o Enjoying the concerts – 68%
o Going on excursions on Wednesdays – 60%
o Hearing keynote speakers – 53%
o Attending receptions – 46%
o Networking with vendors and visiting exhibits – 46%
o Participating in committees, working groups, commissions, etc. – 36%
o Attending poster sessions – 35%
o Attending the farewell dinner – 34%
o Attending various IAML business meetings – 22%
o Going on pre- and post- conference tours – 14%
4. If/when you do not attend IAML conferences, what are the reasons?
• The number one response was lack of institutional support – 63%.
• The number two response was location – 46%.
5. Would you like to see the conference programme supplemented with additional moderated roundtable/discussion sessions?
• The answers were split at 55% yes and 45% no.
6. Any other comments or ideas about IAML conferences?
• There were 59 responses covering a wide range of topics, and no specific themes arose. Some responses included:
o Record all sessions and share them online.
o Make Spanish an official language.
o More public library focus.
o Fewer musicological presentations and more librarianship ones.
o Find another time of year to meet.
o Find ways to lower costs.
o I would like to see a first-timers breakfast or event.
o Wish the papers were more interactive and less presentations.
7. About IAML at the international level, how easy do you find it to participate in the activities of IAML (e.g., committees, working groups, professional, etc.)
• 44% of respondents said they are not sure how to get involved.
• 32% said it is moderately easy to get involved.
• 14% said it is difficult.
• 11% said it is easy.
o Comments included that it is hard to commit to the time needed.
8. Which statements below most accurately reflect your experience (if appropriate)? Please click all that apply.
• The ten statements are listed below from most to least frequently chosen.
o I am interested in getting involved but am concerned about the time commitment that may be required of me - 28%
o I find the group in which I am participating fulfilling and beneficial - 26%
o I am not sure how to get involved in the group(s) in which I am interested – 24%
o The group in which I am participating could be more tightly organised and more goal-orientated – 16%
o The group in which I am participating does good work during IAML conferences, but I wish it would remain more active throughout the year between the annual conferences - 15%
o I am not interested in participating in any IAML groups - 13%
o The terms of reference are clear to me - 12%
o The terms of reference are not clear to me - 12%
o I have tried to get involved but did not feel welcomed or engaged - 8%
o Nothing happens from year to year with the group in which I am a participant - 7%
9. Please comment on how we can improve IAML and its value to you. For example, what should IAML focus on that it is not covering at present? What could IAML do to engage you as a more active member?
• There were 89 responses representing a wide range of views. Some included the following:
o Providing an electronic version of Fontes.
o Web-conferencing options or a more interactive website for people who can’t attend conferences.
o Online events and options throughout the year.
o A joint meeting with MLA.
o Organisational issues like terms of reference and transparency of the organization.
o It is hard to find the time and money to be more involved that I am.
10. The final questions were about the people responding:
• Age group: under 30 – 4%
• Age group: 31 to 40 – 20%
• Age group: 41 to 50 – 24%
• Age group: 51 to 64 – 41%
• Age group: 65+ – 10%
The Membership breakdown is:
o Institutional IAML member – 26%
o Individual IAML member – 41%
o Student – 1 %
o Retired – 6%
o Unemployed – 1%
o Not a member – 14%
Summary prepared by Joseph Hafner, January 6, 2014
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