Libro Futuro

University libraries, sharing and Open Access. Mario Coffa interviews Ertuğrul Çimen

Intervista in italiano

Ertuğrul Çimen has a BS from Hacettepe University Faculty of Literature, Librarianship Department, and a MA from Kadir Has University, Social Sciences Institute, Finance, and Banking Program. His current position is the library director of MEF University. His professional interests are academic library management, library consortiums, license agreements for e-resources, library collaboration, resource sharing, and document delivery, life-long learning, and staff exchange programs for librarians. He has an active role in NGOs and professional organizations at the national and international levels. He is the former president of Anatolian University Libraries Consortium (ANKOS) and former executive board member of the Turkish Librarians Association (TLA). He is also former Information Coordinator and the Secretary of the IFLA Document Delivery and Resource Sharing Standing Committee He has been serving as the Information coordinator of the Freedom of Access to Information and Freedom of Expression (FAIFE) Advisory Board and the member of the Europe Regional Division Committee of IFLA. He is currently the editorial board member of the Interlending & Document Supply Journal (Emerald Publishing) and International Journal of Knowledge Management and Practices (IJKMP).

To begin, can you briefly tell us about your work as director of a university library? In addition to your contact with young students, what are the projects and activities that the library proposes?

As the director of MEF University Library, I am responsible for all library services produced for the users, and there are many other activities behind at the back office such as human resources management, budgeting, policy production, e-resources management, open science, etc. MEF Library is a user-oriented library, therefore to provide the best user services is our main goal. MEF Library uses social media very active to get better communication with the users. MEF Library provides several types of consultancy services to support academic and scientific research activities for its users, by the way.

In your opinion, what are the differences between a university library and a public library? Or better, in your opinion, can a university library be a useful service for society, not just academia?

There are similarities and differences between academic and public libraries according to the services. But, as social responsibilities, both library types have to provide services to support the local community in the region. Many academic libraries create tailored user services such as training courses and social activities according to the needs of their users out of the academic community. One of the main goals of academic libraries is to support and lead economic, social, industrial developments in their region.

About the professional recognition of the librarian, what can you tell us about it? Is this professional figure solid enough and appreciated in Turkey? What does it mean to be a librarian in your country?

There are regional/geographical differences in the reputation of librarians all over the world. Although librarianship is seen as an important career in Turkey, unfortunately, it is not possible to say that it has achieved the importance and value it deserves. I think that starting from higher education institutions where librarianship education is given, professionals who practice this profession should do their job in the best way they can and work hard to gain the importance they deserve.

This project, the Library World Tour, aims to share in order to create a network between librarians and also to propose all these articles in Open Access format. You took care of this as an IFLA member; what is your opinion?

I believe that scientific outputs should be published and shared without any restrictions for the benefit of humanity. I think that knowledge and experience can only be made available to all society’s layers in this way. That’s why I support open science and open access work around the world.

What would you recommend to a young student who wants to be a librarian when he grows up?

A librarian must be sensitive to social developments and have a very high intellectual background. It should have the knowledge and skills to compete on a global scale, and the cooperation should be able to lead social development and transformation at the global level. Of course, a librarian candidate always needs to work hard to do all these things.



Mario Coffa
Mario Coffa
Mario Coffa archivista e bibliotecario, laureato in Conservazione dei Beni Culturali presso l’Università degli Studi di Perugia (2005) e diplomato in Archivistica e Paleografia presso la Scuola di Archivistica dell’Archivio Segreto Vaticano (2010). Dal 2010 Lavora per CAeB (Cooperativa Archivistica e Bibliotecaria) presso le biblioteche dell’Università di Perugia come bibliotecario e come archivista presso l'Archivio Storico del Comune di Gubbio. Si occupa di Biblioteche Digitali e formazione in ambito di biblioteconomia digitale. Nel 2014 membro del Comitato Esecutivo Regionale dell’Associazione Italiana Biblioteche (AIB) sezione Umbria, membro del gruppo AIB sul portfolio professionale e nel triennio 2017-2020 Presidente eletto di AIB Umbria. Dal 2020 membro dell'Osservatorio Formazione dell'Associazione Italiana Biblioteche. Autore di diversi articoli e interviste per Insula Europea sul tema degli archivi, delle biblioteche e del digital lending.


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