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The Hernán Santa Cruz Library and the Book of the Week

14 July 2021|Briefing note

Maintaining our community of ECLAC staff and library users during the COVID-19 pandemic

The coronavirus pandemic has forced libraries around the world to rethink the delivery of library resources and services and reimagine new ways to maintain communication with users.  

Book of the week / “Libro de la semana" in Spanish / is a self-tape invitation to ECLAC staff to share a one-minute video of themselves discussing the title of a book that they are currently reading – the staff of the ECLAC library has found a way to transform the virtual space of the library into a community of open communication and interaction.  

The popular initiative – shared via the Library’s Youtube channel and Twitter @BibliotecaCEPAL features staff of ECLAC sharing titles from the library collection, the ECLAC institutional repository, books from the e-book collection, poetry, or works of fiction and non-fiction related to the work areas of ECLAC in either English, Portugese or Spanish – every week. 

The initiative has resulted in increased subscribers and traffic to the Library's social media pages and encouraged staff to engage with the library and with each other in support of the work of ECLAC even during the pandemic.  

According to Chief Librarian Wouter Schallier, ”Many ECLAC colleagues, as well as myself, have been looking forward to each and every new edition of the Book of the Week. It has been inspiring to see ECLAC colleagues talk about their readings in a very personal way. It has truly helped us to maintain our ECLAC community close and alive.” 

The ECLAC Library continues to support the ECLAC mandate by ensuring access to information and knowledge to and by staff in the midst of a pandemic – one book at a time.