Glòria Pérez-Salmerón, IFLA President

Glòria Pérez-Salmerón
IFLA President

Glòria Pérez-Salmerón became IFLA President in August 2017. She is also Past-President of FESABID, Federación Española de Sociedades de Archivística, Biblioteconomía, Documentación y Museística (Spanish Federation of Archivist, Librarianship, Documentation and Museum Associations). 

She works at Diputació de Barcelona and has held many leadership roles in her distinguished career including Director of the National Library of Spain (2010-2013) where she also was member of its Governing Board and Executive Committee (2008-2013). 

Under her management, the Library developed many innovative projects including the systematic digitalization of holdings, thanks to a partnership agreement with Telefónica, which foresaw the digitalization of 200,000 book titles. 

Glòria’s involvement with IFLA is long-standing, being a former member of IFLA’s Public Libraries Standing Committee (2005-2012) and member of the Executive Committee and Vice-President of EBLIDA, European Bureau of Library Information and Documentation Associations (2008-2015). Glòria is an experienced public speaker and regularly gives professional lectures.

Gerald Leitner, IFLA Secretary General

Gerald Leitner
IFLA Secretary General

Gerald Leitner took on the role of IFLA Secretary General in June 2016. He is responsible for the strategic and operational direction and financial management of IFLA. 

Gerald Leitner has worked in senior positions at international organisations and in Austria’s cultural, scientific and educational sectors. Prior to becoming IFLA Secretary General, he was the Secretary General of the Austrian Library Association. Gerald studied literature and history at the University of Vienna, and after his studies worked as journalist, chief editor of the Austrian Library magazine and head of training for public librarians in Austria. 

He is a past president of the European Bureau of Library Information and Documentation Associations (EBLIDA) and a member of national and international advisory bodies in cultural, education and scientific sectors. He is highly experienced in negotiating with politicians, authorities, lobby groups, publishers, artists, businesses and strategic partners. In 2017, Gerald Leitner initiated the Global Vision project.

Alejandro Lorenzo César Santa, General Coordinating Director of the Library of the National Congress

Alejandro Lorenzo César Santa
General Coordinating Director, BCN

Alejandro Santa started working at the Library of the National Congress (BCN) in 1985. He worked as Head of the Modernization Underdirectorate, and later as Head of the Planning Directorate, where he fostered the microfilming and digitization processes of the Institution. In 2011 he was appointed General Coordinating Director of the Library. 

He has specialized in Public Management, Digitization and Fundraising. He has participated in several environmental projects and has been trained in Environmental Management. As Coordinator he has strengthened the bonds between the Argentine Library and IFLA, and has promoted the international insertion of the Library.

Tim Unwin

Tim Unwin
Emeritus Professor, Royal Holloway, University of London, UNESCO Chair in ICT for Development (ICT4D)

Professor Tim Unwin is Emeritus Professor of Geography (since 2011) and Chairholder of the UNESCO Chair in ICT4D (since 2007) at Royal Holloway, University of London, and Honorary Professor at Lanzhou University in China. He was Secretary General of the Commonwealth Telecommunications Organisation (CTO) from 2011-2015, and was Chair of the Commonwealth Scholarship Commission from 2009-2014. 

He serves on the UK Department for International Development’s Digital Advisory Panel, and the UN University – Computing and Society International Advisory Board. In 2018-19 he led the co-ordination of 21 UN agencies on behalf of UNESCO and UNICEF to develop a system-wide strategy on the future of education and learning for the UN’s High Level Committee on Programmes. 

His influential edited book Information and Communication Technologies for Development, was published by Cambridge University Press in 2009, and his latest book Reclaiming ICT4D was published by Oxford University Press in 2017. Most of his research and writing currently focuses on the inequalities caused by ICTs and what needs to be done to ensure that the poorest and most marginalised people can benefit from them. 

He is a member of the £20m UKRI GCRF South-South Migration Hub (2019-23) undertaking research on the use of digital technologies by migrants, Co-Founder of TEQtogether (an initiative to change men’s attitudes and behaviours towards women and technology), and is also well-known for his research on the history and geography of wine. He was appointed a Companion of the Most Distinguished Order of St. Michael and St George (CMG) in the Queen’s 90th Birthday Honours list in 2016 for his services to the Commonwealth.

Gabriela Vanesa Agosto, Secretaria Ejecutiva, Consejo Nacional de Políticas Sociales

Gabriela Vanesa Agosto, PhD
Executive Secretary, National Council for Social Policy Coordination, Argentine Presidency

Gabriela Vanesa Agosto, PhD, is the Executive Secretary of the National Council for the Coordination of Social Policies of the Argentine Presidency, a position she has held since December 2015. She strategically and technically coordinates the articulation of nacional agencies responsible for developing public policies, in order to properly and efficiently manage resources. 

Previously, she was General Coordinator of the Project “National Register of Beneficiaries of Social Plans” at the National Administration of Social Security (ANSES-Argentina), Advisor of the Cabinet of the Secretariat of Programming for the Prevention of Drug Abuse and the Fight against Drug Trafficking (SEDRONAR-Presidency of the Argentine Nation), and National Coordinator of the Program for Strengthening Youth Development of the Secretariat of Social Development (Presidency of the Argentine Nation). 

Likewise, she has been advisor for different programs and projects of public and private agencies, both in Argentina and abroad, including ECLAC Chile, UNICEF Argentina and PARLATINO Brazil. She has vast experience as university lecturer and is currently member of the UNESCO Chair of Instituto Torcuato Di Tella of Argentina and Tenured Professor of Universidad del Museo Social Argentino (UMSA). 

She has 23 years’ experience in her profession. Her academic background includes a PhD in Political Science and Sociology with a specialization in Government and Public Administration from Universidad Complutense de Madrid; a Master’s degree in Public Administration from Instituto Universitario Ortega y Gasset; a Diploma in Advanced Studies in Political Science and Administration and a Diploma in European Communities, both from Universidad Complutense de Madrid; and a Licentiate degree in Sociology from Universidad de Buenos Aires (UBA).

Dr Katarina Popović, Secretary General of ICAE

Dr Katarina Popović
Secretary General, ICAE

Dr Katarina Popović is Secretary General of ICAE (International Council for Adult Education) and Professor at the Department for Andragogy, Faculty of Philosophy, University of Belgrade, visiting professor at several other universities, and President of the Serbian Adult Education Society.  

She is the member of International Adult and Continuing Education Hall of Fame, editor in chief of the journal “Andragogical studies” and author of numerous publications;  she was the vice president of EAEA for several years, and coordinator of German DVV international for South-East Europe, running numerous projects in the field of educationin various roles – as policy advisor, evaluator, curriculum developer and trainer. Her special field is education and training of trainers and teachers  she is certified trainer in youth and adult education (Switzerland), author of the first Global Curriculum for Training of Adult Teachers, with hundreds of trainings delivered worldwide for teachers in youth and adult education, and numerous publications about lifelong learning and adult education. 

As Secretary General of ICAE she monitors and supports implementation of the global agendas, especially SDGs and Education 2030. She is co-chair of the Academia and Education Stakeholder Group in the UN DESA system, member of the Steering Group of the HLPF Coordination Mechanism and member of the Global Alliance for Literacy. 

Guilherme Canela, UNESCO Communication and Information Adviser for Mercosur (Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay and Uruguay) and Chile

Guilherme Canela
UNESCO Communication and Information Adviser for Mercosur (Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay and Uruguay) and Chile

Guilherme Canela holds the position of UNESCO Montevideo Communication and Information Adviser for Mercosur (Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay and Uruguay) and Chile. Currently, he is the Regional Coordinator of the UNESCO Initiative for the Promotion of Democracy and Freedom of Expression in judicial systems in Latin America. He is also the Secretary of the Regional Committee of the UNESCO Memory of the World Programme for Latin America and the Caribbean, and focal point of the Organization for issues related to the safety of journalists. He has a B.A. in International Relations from the University of Brasília (UNB) and a Master’s Degree on Political Science from the University of São Paulo (USP).

For 8 years, Guilherme coordinated the media and journalism research area of the News Agency for Children’s Rights (ANDI). In this period, he was responsible for several surveys that evaluated the news media coverage on issues such as children’s education, rights, violence, health, sexual abuse, human and social development, drugs, participatory democracy, entrepreneurial social responsibility, human rights, among others.

He is co-author of 10 books published by ANDI on these issues (Series Media and Social Mobilization, Cortez Publisher) and several brochures, magazines and discussion texts on various topics related to the universe of human rights, of the rights of children, in particular of development and of democracies. He was research consultant for the United Nations Latin American Institute for the Prevention of Crime and the Treatment of Offenders and for the Ayrton Senna Journalism Award.

Guilherme was senior member of the Working Group of the Ministry of Justice of Brazil to Provide Advisory Services to the Regulation of TV Programs’ Rating System and associated researcher at the Nucleus for Studies of Media and Politics of the University of Brasilia. He was president of the Consultative Committee on Children and Media in Uruguay. Jointly with Solano Nascimento he published the book Access to information and public policies social control. He actively participated in the process of discussion and implementation of Access laws in Brazil, Paraguay and acted as an international observer in the Uruguay Open Government process.

Jeimy Esperanza Hernández Toscano
Libraries and Reading Coordinator, CERLALC

Jeimy is a Colombian librarian with a Masters in Business Administration. She is an expert in public libraries and reading, with a broad experience in the design and implementation of government policy in these areas.

She was the coordinator of the Colombian National Network of Public Libraries, the leader of the National Reading and Library Plans of the Ministry of Culture and Education of this country, Manager of the Bogotá Public LIbaries Network (BIBLORED), and a university lecturer.

She currently works at UNESCO CERLALC, running work on Reading, Writing and Libraries, and coordinating the Ibero-American Network of heads of Policies and Planning for Reading in Ibero-America (REDPLANES)


Stefania Lapolla Cantori

Stefania Lapolla Cantoni
Information Analyst, CETIC.br

Stefania Lapolla Cantoni works for the Regional Center for Studies on the Development of the Information Society (Cetic.br), a department of the Brazilian Network Information Center (NIC.br). 

Stefania has been working closely with the role of information and communication technologies (ICT) for development, mainly with awareness-raising activities on ICT for achieving and measuring the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). 

She holds a master’s degree in Political Science from the University of São Paulo, Brazil, and a bachelor’s in the same field from the University of Entre Ríos, Argentina.

Luis Scasso

Luis Scasso
Deputy Director, OEI Argentina Office and Regional Director of the OEI for Mercosur

Luis María Scasso has an undergraduate degree in Political Science with postgraduate studies in Formulation and Planning of Education Policies, Planning and Management of Development Cooperation Projects, Comparative Regional Integration, Strategic Marketing and International Political Economy.

Currently, he is Deputy Director of the OEI Argentina Office and Regional Director of the OEI for Mercosur. He has served as Director of the Center for Advanced University Studies of the OEI, General Director of Cooperation and Permanent Education of the OEI, National Director Office of the Paraguay Office, Special Delegate of the OEI in Uruguay, Special Delegate of the OEI in Bolivia, among others. Previously, he has fulfilled functions at UNESCO, the Argentine National Commission of Cooperation with UNESCO, the National Directorate of International Cooperation, the Integration Foundation and in the Forum of Mayors and Entrepreneurs of Mercosur, among others.

Was a Member of the UNESCO High Level Group of Experts on Learning Cities, Member of the Drafting Commission of the UNESCO World Declaration on Learning Cities (Beijing Declaration), Member of the Drafting Commission of the II World Declaration on Learning Cities of UNESCO (Declaration of Mexico) and is a Participating Member of the Permanent Seminar on the Social Question of the Torcuato di Tella Institute, and Honorary Member of the Augusto Roa Bastos Foundation.

He has given seminars, courses and presentations in various countries.

Dorothy Gordon

Dorothy Gordon
Chair, Inter-governmental Council of UNESCO’s Information for all Programme

Dorothy Gordon is Chair of the Inter-governmental Council of UNESCO’s Information for all Programme and a Board Member of  UNESCO IITE – Institute for Information Technology in Education.

She was the founding Director-General of the Ghana-India Kofi Annan Centre of Excellence in ICT, a specialist technology training and research institute, a position which she held for over a decade.  She works globally as a policy advisor, evaluator, project manager  and  organisational management consultant.  

Over the course of her 30-year career in international development and technology she has held management positions with the UN and global management consulting firms on four continents; involving oversight responsibilities for multi-million dollar projects and programmes. 

She is a member of ICANN’s  Non-Commercial Stakeholder Group.  As a strong advocate of the importance of building robust local innovation ecosystems based on open source technologies, she serves on the board and as a mentor to a number of start-ups and women in tech NGOs.  

She holds degrees from the University of Ghana and the University of Sussex, Institute of Development Studies where she trained as a development economist. She works in both English and French.

Patricia Muñóz

Patricia Muñoz Palma
Director Scientific Information Programme, CONICYT

Patricia Muñoz Palma is a librarian and holds a masters in digital Documentation from the Pompeu Fabra University in Barcelona, Spain. A specialist in the management of scientific and technological information, she has developed and led regional projects on the accessibility and visibility of scientific activities, their results and impact.

Her main areas of specialisation are Access to scientific information, the monitoring of scientific production, research data management and science policies. She is the director of the research information programme of the National Commission for Scientific and Technological Research of Chile (CONICYT).

She has vast experience in the design of information services and tools for the promotion and management of scientific and technological research such as: Scielo-Chile, www.dataciencia.cl, investigadores.conicyt.cl, and others.

She is currently a member of different expert committees and international networks. She is a member of the CODATA Data Policy Committee, a founding member and President 2016-2018 of La Referencia of the Network of Open Access to Science Repositories (www.lareferencia.info), the ORDIC Reducing Burden and Improving Transparency (ORBIT) Project, and a member of the SciELO Network.

She was the representative of Latin America in the Expert Group on Management of Marine Information (GEMIN) of the UNESCO International Oceans Commission, representative of Chile in AFSA BOARD (Aquatics, Fisheries Science Abstracts BOARD, FAO), and coordinator for South America on the ‘Latin American e-Repository on Ocean Publications (a project of the UNESCO International Oceans Commission).

Karl Falkenberg

Karl-Friedrich Falkenberg
Former Director-General for Environment, European Commission

Karl Falkenberg looks back at 40 years of international negotiations for the EU. His career started with textile trade negotiations. Most of his career was spent on multilateral negotiations, including the negotiation of the institutional agreement setting up the WTO. 

He also negotiated a large number of bilateral free trade agreements, before moving as Director General to the EU’s DG Environment, where he negotiated on issues such as Climate Change, Biodiversity, a range of international environmental conventions and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in the UN system. Since July 2017 he works as an independent lecturer and advisor on trade, environment and sustainability.

Fabiola Rosales

Fabiola Elena Rosales Salinas
Research and Analysis Services Director, Chamber of Deputies, Mexico

Fabiola is a Mexican librarian specialist in information services for Members of the Parliament. She worked as Staff Director at the Committee on Library and Editorial Issues in the Mexican Senate. Reference librarian, Head of Reference Services and nowadays, Director of Research and Analysis Services in the Mexican Chamber of Deputies.

Inspired by the defense of information democratization, she was motivated to become the Secretary General of the Mexican Librarians Association (AMBAC), member of IFLA’s Reference and Information Services Standing Committee and to engage in organizing events that aim at promoting the librarian profession.

Rene Mauricio Valdes

René Mauricio Valdés
Resident Coordinator for the United Nations in Argentina

Rene Mauricio Valdés (El Salvador) is the Resident Coordinator of the United Nations System and Permanent Representative of the United Nations Development Programme in Argentina.

He has worked with the United Nations in Colombia, Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala and at its Headquarters in New York. He was the Director of the Central American Programme of Masters in Public Administration, in Costa Rica, and Coordinator of the Programme of Modernisation of the Public Sector in El Salvador.

He graduated in International Relations at the University of El Salvador, and has a Master’s in Public Administration from the University of Costa Rica, and a PhD in Political Science from the University of Toronto.

Facundo Manes

Facundo Manes
Neurologist and neuroscientist

Facundo Manes was born and raised in Buenos Aires, Argentina. He holds a medical degree from the University of Buenos Aires and a PhD in Sciences from the University of Cambridge. In 2001, he returned to his home country where he founded INECO (Institute of Cognitive Neurology) and the Institute of Neurosciences at Favaloro University in Buenos Aires.

Dr. Manes is a member of the National Scientific and Technical Research Council (CONICET) in Argentina, President of the INECO Foundation for Research in Neuroscience, and Professor in many prestigious Universities around the world. He has published books and over 223 original papers in the most prestigious international science journals.

Dr. Manes is convinced that the wealth of a nation is based on its human capital, education, science and technology. He travels his country giving lectures on the importance of engaging civil society in the building of a knowledge society.

Wouter Schallier

Wouter Schallier
Chief of the Hernán Santa Cruz Library of UN/ECLAC

Wouter Schallier is Chief of the Hernán Santa Cruz Library of UN/ECLAC (United Nations Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean, United Nations), in Santiago de Chile. He has a Master’s degree in “Linguistics and Literature: Latin and Greek”, a Diploma in “Medieval Studies” and a Master’s in “Information and Library Sciences”. He started his professional career at K.U.Leuven University, Belgium, first as coordinator of several innovative projects and 3 years later as Director of the Library of Medicine and Pharmacy.

Between 2008 and 2012, Wouter Schallier was Executive Director of LIBER (Association of European Research Libraries), in The Hague, The Netherlands. In this position he secured funding from the European Commission for projects in the following areas: Europeana digital library, access to scientific information resources, open access, digital preservation, and research data management.

As Chief of the Hernán Santa Cruz (ECLAC) Library, Wouter Schallier introduced a strategy to radically modernize the services and products of the Library. In 2014, the Biblioteca Hernán Santa Cruz launched the ECLAC Digital Repository (https://repositorio.cepal.org/), which provides open access to all publications of the Regional Commission, from 1948 until now. After an ambitious renovation project, the new physical spaces of the Hernán Santa Cruz Library were inaugurated in 2016.

Between 2015 and 2017, Wouter Schallier led the Latin American and Caribbean work packages of the LEARN project (www.learn-rdm.eu) on Research Data Management, financed by the European Commission. The main objective of this project was to support the implementation of data management policies in research institutions in Europe, Latin America and the Caribbean.

Wouter Schallier publishes and regularly presents talks on the following topics: access to information, innovation and scholarly communication.

Maria Garrido

Maria Garrido
Principal Research Scientist, TASCHA

Maria is a Principal Research Scientist at the Technology & Social Change Group of the University of Washington’s Information School. Experienced in conducting multi-country studies that span diverse geographic regions, much of her research focuses on the appropriation of information and communication technologies (ICTs) to catalyse social change, specifically in communities facing social, political, and economic challenges.

Keenly interested in the role of ICTs in social movements, youth employability, and skill development, Maria has worked closely with civil society organizations, NGOs, public libraries, and development funders to conduct participatory research that results in actionable recommendations for policy and practice.

Maria is currently leading a multi-year research effort focusing on the role of access to information in advancing the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). She holds a Ph.D. in Communications from the University of Washington and a Masters in International Relations from the University of Chicago.

Stephen Wyber

Stephen Wyber
Manager, Policy and Advocacy, IFLA

Stephen Wyber is Manager, Policy and Advocacy at the International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions, where he leads on efforts to build understanding of the role of libraries and influence policy-making.

Before joining IFLA in 2016, he worked at the British Embassy in Paris, and the United Kingdom Permanent Delegation to the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD). He has a degree in European Politics from the University of Wales, Aberystwyth, and a Masters from the College of Europe.

Watch this space for an updated list of speakers at the President's Meeting 2019