ISSN 1524-363X 
 LEAF-VN Newsletter
the newsletter of  the Library and Education Assistance Foundation for Vietnam
           Bản Tin LEAF-VN  
Bản tin của Hội Hỗ Trợ Thư Viện và Giáo Dục Việt Nam

Volume 1, Issue 2  
Tập 1, số 2 
Fall 1999 
Thu 1999

Fall 1999

Editor's Note: The Vietnamese fonts in this newsletter were created using Unicode Fonts.
Leaf-VN Officers
President's Message 
Lien-Huong Fiedler, LEAF-VN President 
Projects Update 
Vinh-The Lam, LEAF-VN Project Director 
Secretary's Report 
Le-Huong Pham, LEAF-VN Secretary
International Health Sciences Librarianship 
Sharon E. Hunt, LEAF-VN Newsletter Editor
New Advisory Board Members
LEAF-VN Members in the News 
Web Resources of Interest 
Vietnam Periodicals 
Huế thương
Editorial Information 
Ms. Lien-Huong Fiedler, President 
(Huyen Ton-Nu Lien-Huong)
703-288-1919 (FAX)
Mr. Hoang Ngoc Huu, 
Vice President 
408-287-3620 or 
Ms. Le-Huong Pham, Secretary  209-575-6234 
209-575-6669 (FAX) or 
Mr. Thanh Pham, Treasurer  202-707-3987
Mr. Vinh-The Lam, 
Project Director 
306-966-5919 (FAX) (office) or (home) 
Ms. Nga Nguyen, 
Fundraising Director 
520-626-2922 (FAX) (office)
Ms. Sharon E. Hunt, 
Assistant Secretary 
520-760-4941 (FAX) 
Mr. Thach Phan, 
Assistant Project Director 
Ms. Sharon E. Hunt, Newsletter Editor  520-760-4941
520-760-4941 (FAX) 
 Back to Table of Contents
 President's Message
Lien-Huong Fiedler, LEAF-VN President


 On March 31st, 2000, LEAF-VN will be two years old!

We have been working together conscientiously to accomplish LEAF-VN's objectives, devising different and more effective ways to communicate with our Vietnamese colleagues in their endeavors to bring libraries up to international standards. These communications over thousands of miles have been enhanced by meetings. Indeed, the meetings held with Vietnamese library leaders at the 65th IFLA-Bangkok Council and General Conference (August 20-28) and with other librarians throughout the country have opened up ways for us to accomplish our long-term tasks and objectives,which were formulated during our first business meetings, June 24-27, 1998.

LEAF-VN has come a long way. On June 27, 1998 at the Washington, D.C American Library Association Annual Conference, Ms. Le-Huong Pham and I introduced LEAF-VN to the ALA International Relations Committee's Subcommittee on East Asia and the Pacific. Now, we are a full participant on the Subcommittee. Wereported to the group at the ALA Philadelphia Midwinter Meetings in January this year and again at the ALA New Orleans Conferences in June 1999, where Mr. Binh P. Le also recruited another important advisor for our non-profit organization, Ms. Ngoc-My Guidarelli. Ms. Guidarelli came to the New Orleans Conference to present a paper. During the past year, other people have searched the LEAF-VN Homepage and decided to join us. At the Library of Congress, we have Ms. Vera DeBuchananne, Mr. Kio Kanda, Ms. Helen Poe, and Mr. Thomas Yee. From public libraries, we have Ms. Angie Nguyen (Santa Ana, CA) and Ms. Kate Johnson (Toronto, Canada). I take this chance to welcome you all aboard.

The past year was a year of preparation. Our Vice President, Mr. Hoang Ngoc Huu, has spent long hours converting files and creating links on our website. Other directors have answered and researched queries, involving such matters as "virtual library," "digitization," "medical library databases," "national professional library associations," "organizational structure for libraries," etc. Ms. Nga Nguyen patiently answered medical library queries through "snail mails" for libraries, which have no e-mail systems! Ms. Sharon Hunt has worked on the newsletter online layout, solving complicatedprocedure for Vietnamese fonts and other vexing problems. Ms. Charlotte Douglass explained to me how to go about negotiating and signing legal agreements. Throughout the year, LEAF-VN has received guidance and reference help from the following advisors, Mr. Donald Hausrath, Ms. Mary Wolfskill, Ms. Vera DeBuchananne, Ms. Regina Reynolds, Mr. William Anderson, Ms. Diana Barber, Ms. Lynn El-Hoshy, and Mr. Thomas Yee. Mr. Vinh-The Lam and Ms. Le-Huong Pham have spent their long weekend and evening hours to accomplish two big projects: translating the DDC 21 Summaries and its Expanded Introduction to the Dewey Decimal Classification, for which I signed the "Vietnamese Translation Agreement" with the OCLC Forest Press Executive Director, Ms. Joan Mitchell and OCLC President, Robert L. Jordan during my attendance at the 65th IFLA-Bangkok Conference. Also at the IFLA Bangkok Conference, for the first time I met with LEAF-VN advisor, Dr. Gary E. Gorman (School of Communication & Information Management, Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand; and Editor of "Asian Libraries" journal) and attended his two conference presentations!

In July this year, copyright permission to publish The Concise AACR2 was granted by the Library Association (British), the Canadian Library Association, and the American Library Association, all of the copyright holders. Mr. Vinh-The Lam and Ms. Le-Huong Pham completed the translation of the CAAR2 in early February. The manuscript, however, still sits at the printing shop waiting for generous support from the philanthropic world!

During the year, we have also tried to publicize LEAF-VN within the library community. On May 13 this year, Mr. Binh P. Le and I introduced LEAF-VN to the Library of Congress staff. This event was reported in the "Weekly Events" column of the Washington Post. On June 17, Mr. Vinh-The Lam gave a briefing about LEAF-VN at the Canadian Library Association Conference. We gained two more advisors through these events. Our newsletter received an official serial number, the ISSN-1524-363X, from the Library of Congress in February this year.

I wish to thank Vietnamese librarians. I would like to express our appreciation for the help we have received during the past year from LEAF-VN liaisons: Mr. Nguyen Minh Hiep, Director of Graduate Library of Vietnam National University (Ho Chi Minh City) and President of the Library Society (academic libraries--Ho Chi Minh City); and Ms. Cam-Lai Tran, Director of Medical Library, Hue Faculty of Medicine.

Vietnam Trip

My mission in going to Thailand and Vietnam in September was to connect with Vietnamese librarians for "Joint Library Projects and Seminars." I am very pleased with the outcome of this trip. I met nearly thirty library leaders and education officials at the 65th IFLA-Bangkok Council and General Conference (August 20-28, 1999). Since then, LEAF-VN has been working with Director Pham The Khang, Library Department, Ministry of Culture and Information, about future Joint Library Seminars.

I arrived in Hanoi on time for a two-day library seminar conducted by Dr. Gary Gorman and Ms. Rowena Cullen, "Marketing Information Services in Vietnam’s Developing Economics." This seminar was organized by Dr. Ta Ba Hung, Director of NACESTID (National Centre for Scientific and Technological Information and Documentation, Ministry of Science and Technology). The next day, on August 31st, as the Representative for LEAF-VN, I was invited to meet with Vietnamese library leaders and education officials to discuss the Translation Project of the Dewey Decimal Classification System. This subject classification was chosen by Vietnamese educators to arrange systematically by subject all library collections in Vietnam. A few of the important participants at that evening meeting were Mr. Nguyen Huy Chuong, Director of Library Information Centre of the Vietnam National University (Hanoi); Dr. Ta Ba Hung, Director of NACESTID; Mr. Pham The Khang, Director of Library Department, Ministry of Culture and Information; Ms. Joan Mitchell, Executive Director of OCLC Forest Press; Dr. Patricia Oyler, Professor of Simmons College, Boston; and Ms. Judith Henchy, Head of Southeast Asia Section, University of Washington Libraries, Seattle.

On September 1st, to further explore the Dewey Decimal Classification Translation Project, Ms. Joan Mitchell and Dr. Patricia Oyler conducted a training seminar at the Library and Information Centre of the Vietnam National University, Hanoi (LIC-VNU). Its Director, Mr. Nguyen Huy Chuong invited more than 100 participants. It was a joyful and exciting scene of so many enthusiastic Vietnamese librarians coming from libraries in Hanoi and its suburban areas! I realized how important is the future publication of The Concise AACR2 (The Concise Anglo-American Cataloging Rules, second edition)! When I told a group of Vietnamese librarians surrounding me at the training intermission that LEAF-VN Directors, Ms. Le-Huong Pham and Mr. Vinh-The Lam just finished the translation of The Concise AACR2, one librarian said to me, "Can LEAF-VN distribute these books next summer?"

I toured a few libraries in Hanoi. The Main Library of NACESTID was very impressive, especially their library automation system. The visit to the National Library of Vietnam (Hanoi) was quite interesting. The National Library of Vietnam, which has a big collection of over 1 million items, needs modernizing of their automation and library technical services. However, like other library administrators whom I met during this trip, Director Tran Anh Dung of VNL and his assistant Ms. Nguyen Thi Huyen Dan were very serious and willing to work together with our directors to improve their libraries. On my last day in Hanoi, I was invited to visit the Vietnam National Center for Natural Science and Technology (Nghia Do-Tu Liem, suburb of Hanoi) by Dr. Mai Ha, Director of Institute for Scientific Information (ISI) of the Center. I was very excited to see the big buildings of the Center as well as the numerous publications by Vietnamese scientists but was surprised at the work which remains to be done. And Director Mai Ha, an enthusiastic and dedicated man, discussed assistance for his library in technical services as well as in collection development.

For bigger view, please click at the photo

In Ho Chi Minh City, I received a tremendous welcome from the library leaders attending my September 6 LEAF-VN Presentation at the (Ho Chi Minh) HCM Scientific Cultural House. I was questioned by the enthusiastic participants; Dr. Do Dinh Cong and his two library assistants for the Medicine School’s Library prepared three long written questions for me! They are serious about LEAF-VN’s future assistance. Dr. Cao Minh Thi, Acting Director of Federation of Scientific and Technological Association HCM City (HOFESTA), invited reporters to attend this gathering. This event was reported in The Saigon Times Daily and subsequently in their weekly magazine. Dr. Huynh Van Hoang, Vice President and Secretary General of HOFESTA, with whom I met in July 1997 to discuss our intention of forming LEAF-VN, also came to welcome me.

The desire to improve his or her library through outside assistance, particularly through LEAF-VN, was expressed by every librarian whom I have met during this trip. I was invited by so many librarians to tour their libraries! I wish I could have brought all of Directors and Advisors to meet these dedicated professional librarians! Our old colleague, Mr. Le Ngoc Oanh, showed me his new library. It is quite efficient, arranged according to the architectural plans he drew. Mr. Nguyen Minh Hiep's Graduate Library is larger with new rooms being furnished. Director Nguyen Minh Hiep was very proud of his accomplishments; among these is his Library Society with 90 members, just celebrating its first year anniversary! Ms. Bui Loan Thuy, Director of the Library of College of Social Sciences and Humanities, showed me the call numbers of the books on the shelves using the BBK Classification (Russian Classification=Biblioteka Bibliographia Klassifisia). At the Library of the University of Education (Ho Chi Minh City), Director Ho Thi Minh Tuong and her assistant, Ms. Le Quynh Chi, were conducting a library training session! I wish I had the time to visit other libraries!

My last library tours took place in Hue City. LEAF-VN Liaison, Director Ms. Cam Lai Tran invited several librarians to her Library so we all could discuss the possibility of connecting with LEAF-VN for further library assistance. I also spent long hours meeting with Director Pham Cong Nguyen and his staff from the Hue Cultural Heritage Monuments Conservation Center. They have received funding from the Ford Foundation to build a library to preserve all Hue historical artifacts scattered all over the country and abroad. Now, they are seeking library technical assistance to organize these collections.

It is people who build great libraries. During last year, our Board of Directors have been working on ways to connect with colleagues at home. We have received warm and enthusiastic cooperation. It is now our challenge to find resources to help them turn their libraries into "electronic doorways of the 21st century" and to fill their shelves with academic textbooks and scholarly materials for learning, teaching, and research programs. All full-time working Directors (LEAF-VN staff) have been using their limited free time throughout the year to fulfill their promises. The pages followed in this second issue of LEAF-VN Newsletter will show part of their efforts!

I believe our devotion will, no doubt, bring concrete results in the year 2000 for LEAF-VN and the Vietnamese library community whom we endeavor to serve.

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Projects Update
Vinh-The Lam
LEAF-VN Project Director

1. Translation Projects

1.1. The Concise AACR2:  The Library Association (of Great Britain) which is a representative and co-owners of the copyright of the original English language work of Michael Gorman’s The Concise AACR2 [The CAACR2]. Chicago, ALA, 1988, has given LEAF-VN permission, gratis, to translate the CAACR2. Thanks due to Ms. Yu-lan Chou, and Mr. Michael Dowling of ALA, and Ms. Janet Liebster of the Library Association (of Great Britain) for their supports on this project.

1.2. Dewey Decimal Classification: Through tremendous efforts by President Lien-Huong Fiedler, LEAF-VN is now close to an agreement with OCLC Forest Press for a translation project for the Abridged Edition of DDC.  President Fiedler will meet with Ms. Joan Mitchell of OCLC Forest Press and other individuals (including some Vietnamese librarians) in Bangkok in August during the IFLA Conference to discuss issues related to this important project.  Through e-mail exchanges with Vietnamese colleagues,
LEAF-VN directors were made aware of the growing need for a Vietnamese edition of DDC as many Vietnamese academic libraries have recently decided to drop the Russian-based BBK and switch to DDC for organizing their collections.

2. Training Project

Due to the fact that most funding organizations have rejected our request for funding, LEAF-VN has decided to drop the plan to bring Vietnamese librarians to the US for their MLS study.  Instead, President Fiedler has approached the Library of Congress (LC) for a project of bringing 5 Vietnamese librarians to the US for a one-month internship at LC.

Back to Table of Contents


Secretary's Report
Le-Huong Pham, LEAF-VN Secretary
1. The Concise AACR2: The British Library Association which is a representative and co-owners of the copyright of the original English language work of Michael Gorman's The Concise AACR2 [The CAACR2]. Chicago, ALA, 1988, has given LEAF-VN permission, gratis, to translate the CAACR2. Thanks due to Ms Yu-Lan Chou, Mr. Michael Dowling of ALA, and Ms Janet Liebster of the Library Association [of Great Britain] for their supports to this project. The proof copy of the layout arrived on 8/5/99 from ABC Discount Printing in Costa Mesa, CA. With the help from Mr. GiaHoa Pham, a friend of LEAF-VN, the title pages of all materials were scanned and displayed in the Illustrations of the book. The proof copy was returned to the Printing House on 30th October 1999 for revision. The second proof copy will be done and sent on to me for reading soon. Whenever LEAF-VN has the funds to do so, the camera-ready copy will be ready to be printed.

2.   More connections in the cyberspace: I further extended my connection between librarians in VN and LEAF-VN by helping Chu Tuyet Lan, Librarian of Sino-Vietnamese Institute in Hanoi, to obtain articles on the computer software applications being developed in Japan using the Sino-Vietnamese language from the Mekong Center site in Japan. Due to the fact that the Vietnamese fonts used on the website were VISCII fonts, Vietnamese librarians in VN could not access and read it. Some libraries can't afford to buy the WebEye program in order to read different VN fonts being used on the World Wide Web, or their office computer was not hooked up with Internet. I printed on paper and sent it home via my relatives and later it was sent from Saigon to Hanoi via postal service. Mekong Center website:

3.   Giving help to the Vietnamese colleagues: Colleagues from home asked for information in the field of library and information science such as digital library, electronic journal, Z39.50, library automation, etc. I sent articles related to the digital library to Mr. Vu Van Son of NACESTID, and other librarians who might be interested in reading it. I helped search for articles on the World Library Associations for Nguyen Minh Hiep of the Graduate Library, School of Natural Sciences. I did an extensive research on library automation and sent information to Dr. Do Dinh Cong of the School of Medicine Library of HCM City.

4.   Getting help from Vietnamese colleagues: In return, the Vietnamese colleagues in Vietnam have given me great help. I received a request for help from Mr. Arthur Vespry, former Director of the Asian Institute of Technology in Thailand, also LEAF-VN advisor, on behalf of Mr. Jaffee Yee, former Asian Libraries Editor. Mr. Yee is writing a paper on the topic: ''The Publishing of Library & Info Science (LIS) Journals in East Asia: An Overview." He needs information pertaining to the LIS journals being published in VN for his paper. I helped him to translate his questionnaires into the Vietnamese language and send it to our colleagues in Vietnam.

Mr. Vu Van Son, Director of the Library of National Centre for Scientific and Technological Information and Documentation (NACESTID) gave me much assistance. He provided the names of the magazines and information pertaining to its publication; he also provided the website of his NACESTID's Journal of Information and Documentation:  

Besides Mr. Son, Ms. Chu Tuyet Lan of the Sino-Vietnamese Institute helped me provide information on the Online Newsletter via Intranet of the Library and Information Center, National University of Vietnam, Hanoi.

I found a partial list of Vietnamese Periodicals on the Internet at: At this Website, none of the journals listed belong to LIS field. According to Mr. Vu van Son, there are about 600 titles of periodicals published in Vietnam, but only 3 titles which are in LIS field published on paper, and two online at this address:

5.   Translation of some publications of OCLC Forest Press: OCLC/Forest Press which owns the copyright of the publications: "Expand Introduction to the Dewey Decimal Classification" and "DDC21 Summaries" (the Publications) posted on the OCLC website at the following URLs:

OCLC/Forest Press granted their permission to translate the publications into the Vietnamese language gratis to LEAF-VN. Ms.Le-Huong Pham and Mr. Vinh-The Lam were charged to do the translation. It was forwarded to Ms. Lien-Huong Fielder who brought it to Bangkok, Thailand when she attended the IFLA Conference. Ms. Fiedler had a meeting with Ms. Joan Mitchell, Editor of the OCLC/Forest Press in August 1999. It was distributed at the meeting between Ms. Mitchell, Ms. Fielder and the Vietnamese delegates from Vietnam. LEAF-VN can publish, reproduce, and distribute worldwide the Vietnamese Publications in printed forms and in electronic form (LEAF-VN website). Thanks due to Ms. Joan Mitchell, Editor of the OCLC/Forest Press and the OCLC Online Computer Library Center, Inc., for granting LEAF-VN to do the translation of the Publications. To do the translation, I have acquired some new dictionaries published in Vietnam lately. I compiled the list of dictionaries for LEAF-VN’s members to view; it can be loaned to members only upon request. See also President's message.

The Vietnamese versions of the above publications are posted at LEAF-VN URLs below:

6.    Hue flood relief: Twice within a month in early November, and December 1999 two drastic "floods of the century" had happened in the central Vietnam, from Danang to Quang Nam, to Hue and its vicinity. There were a lot of houses, schools, people, domestic animals, roads, bridges, crops washed away. Every night during November news came via Internet. I was shock to receive a "flood of news" from friends and relatives in Vietnam and in the USA who cried for help. I started downloading news and forwarded it via e-mail to other friends, colleagues all over the country. The Van Hanh University Alumni Overseas Group, The Cheer for Vietnam, The Buddhist Family Youth Group, etc. were contacted and all started to organize fundraising for the flood victims. E-mails were "flying" all over the world asking for donation from friends and relatives abroad. LEAF-VN members were called for donations to our former colleague who is a flood victim in Hue. E-mail was sent to Hue after the water was receded and news was sent out to inform us that our friend's house was submerged under water. His family had to climb up to the attic and waited to be rescued. Donations were collected and sent to help him out. Children of the elementary schools lost their schools, needed textbooks, notebooks, and pens. Thanks due to father Paul of Hue Catholic Charity whom Mr. Hoang Huu, LEAF-VN Vice President, had contacted and sent money home for helping the elementary school children who are the flood victims. Notebooks, fabrics for school uniform, and some cookies were purchased and donated to 118 pupils.

For pictures of flood in Central Vietnam in November and December, 1999, please visit these sites:

7.   Book donation: In the summer 1999, I went to France for vacation and I had a chance to meet Ms. Xuan-Suong Nguyen, a librarian at the Bibliothèque nationale de France. She gave me a grand tour of the newly built Mitterrand Library at Tolbiac, 13th district of Paris. I donated a copy of the ALA Glossary of Library and Information Science, Vietnamese version, 1996 to the BNF. The BNF catalogers use the DDC 21 ( for classifying their library materials. Ms. Xuan-Suong Nguyen promised me to give LEAF-VN her helping hands on our DDC Project if it is materialized.

For bigger view of BNF, please click at the photo

During the month of November, via the LEAF-VN advisor, Mr. Don Hausrath, LEAF-VN received an e-mail from Mr. Tho Nguyen aka Thich Phap Chon, a Buddhist monk and also a student at San Jose State University, CA. Mr. Tho Nguyen asked for help to build a collection of English books for his Buddhist Institute in Hue, Central of Vietnam. Incidentally Tho Nguyen was the one who sent me a lot of news on the flood in Hue, so we are in the "same boat" working on the same goal of helping the flood victims.

On December 10th, 1999, my friend in Illinois went to Hue with a flood relief group. I asked her to bring a copy of the ALA Glossary of Library and Information Science, Vietnamese version, 1996 and Encyclopedia of Americana, CD-ROM, 1997 to donate to the Buddhist Institute of Hue. On December 21st, 1999 she returned to Illinois and sent me an e-mail in which she informed me about her work in Hue area. Here is her call for more help: The flood victims need everything. The children are back to school walking on muddy road, playing on muddy schoolyard. Please send more money to the devastated areas.

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 International Health Sciences Librarianship
Sharon E. Hunt, LEAF-VN Newsletter Editor

Health sciences librarianship (which may also be termed medical librarianship or biomedical librarianship) is undergoing great changes. This article discusses some of the trends, organizations, events, publications, and Websites in international  health sciences librarianship.


Health sciences librarianship is being affected by many of the same trends affecting librarianship in general including the widespread use of the Internet and the World Wide Web, the creation of digital libraries, and the increasing cost of library materials. Changes in the practice of medicine have also fostered change in the health sciences librarianship field. With these changes, the role of the health sciences librarian is increasingly evolving to one of a educator/information consultant.

Perhaps the biggest factor influencing health sciences librarianship is the widespread use of the Internet and the World Wide Web. There has been an explosion of information available on the Internet; publications, databases, and health information are increasingly available online. The new information technologies have led to the creation of "digital libraries" containing databases and information available through personal computers and the Internet. The health sciences librarian must be able to develop and maintain these digital libraries as well as assist those wishing to utilize the new information technologies. Because there is still much information not available online and because there are individuals unable to utilize these new information technologies, the health sciences librarian must balance traditional collection development and reference work with acquisition and knowledge of the new information technologies.  As the world becomes increasingly global and with the explosion of Internet usage and e-mail, medical information throughout the world is increasingly shared and shared rapidly.  This increased communication and networking between countries and medical communities have also increased interest in the medical practices of other countries. The global economy and the increasing cost of library materials will continue to foster cooperation among and between libraries in countries throughout the world.

Some of the trends in the medical field impacting health sciences librarianship are tight resources, evidence-based practice and problem-based learning, the increasing need for consumer health information, and the increasing use by health professionals of online databases.  Hospitals are merging or closing in many areas; health sciences librarians working in these settings are facing downsizing. In many countries, there may not be enough resources to employ the services of a librarian which means that meeting information needs of health professionals and patients is very difficult.  Evidence-based practice, which is spreading in popularity, is an approach to health care wherein health professionals use the best evidence possible (scientific evidence, clinical expertise, and individual patient needs and choices) to make clinical decisions concerning individual patients. Problem-based learning, which emphasizes learning how to learn, is also gaining strength. Both of these approaches to the practice of medicine have impacted the provision of library/information services as the health sciences librarian works to satisfy the demands of these practices. Another trend influencing the practice of medicine and the practice of health sciences librarianship is the increasing involvement by individuals in their own health care.  This has lead to a demand, and need,  for  "consumer health information," which is health care information accessible to individuals without a medical background. The popularity of the personal computer and the widely available access to databases and information via the World Wide Web has prompted health professionals and patients to directly access the medical literature.

These influences are altering the role of the health sciences librarian. Librarians are now perceived by many health professionals as educational specialists and information consultants. Librarians are acting as "guides" and "filters" to WWW information as well as assisting those who need sophisticated help in searching the biomedical databases and information sources.  Health sciences librarians will increasingly be called upon to convert information into knowledge for their clients, both health professionals and patients, in order for them to make sense and use of the vast amount of information available on the information highway.  Health sciences librarians will increasingly develop, organize, maintain, and instruct users in digital information.


There are a number of organizations providing leadership to the health sciences library community.  Here I list several health sciences organizations and library organizations/associations involved in international areas. Please consult the Websites of these organizations for more information.

The International Federation of Library Association and Institutions (IFLA)  provides information specialists throughout the world with a forum for exchanging ideas and  promoting international cooperation, research, and development in all fields of library activity and information service. The membership of IFLA consists of International/National Associations (associations of libraries and information centres, librarians and library schools, associations of bibliographical and research institutes); Institutional Members (libraries and information centres, library schools, bibliographical and research institutions and other institutions and bodies that would like to contribute professionally to the activities of the Federation) and Personal Affiliates (individuals wishing to support the purposes and professional activities of IFLA).

IFLA's Section of Biological and Medical Sciences Libraries represents and acts as a forum for special libraries concerned with all aspects of information dissemination and services in relation to the health  sciences and biological sciences. The Section's general aims include the promotion of cooperation between biological and health sciences libraries; the facilitating of the development and the application of new technology relevant to  those libraries; the consideration of means for better provision for health care information to health care consumers; the promotion of  cooperative activity between national and international library associations of biological and medical sciences libraries, and the promotion of cooperation with the World Health Organization (WHO) ), FID, and other relevant international bodies. The Section publishes the international Health Sciences Libraries Directory. Their newsletter is available online from 1996-present; they also have a number of listservs available.
Chair:  Jerome Kalfon, Directeur, Bibliotheque de l'Universite, Paris, FRANCE
Information Coordinator: Ysabel Bertolucci, Health Sciences Librarian, Kaiser Permanente Medical Center, Oakland, CA
The International Medical Informatics Association aims to promote informatics in health care and biomedical research; to advance international cooperation; to stimulate research, development and routine application; to further the dissemination and exchange of information; and to encourage education and responsible behaviour. Regionally IMIA is divided into four different sections: IMIA-LAC (Latin and Central America), EFMI (Europe) and APAMI (Asian and Pacific Region). The African region (HELINA) is in developing stage. The members in IMIA are all organizational.  The IMIA Executive Director is: Steve Huesing, 5782 172th St., Edmonton, Alberta, CANADA T6M 1B4, Tel: +1-780-489-4531, Fax: +1-780-489-3290, email:

INASP (The International Network for the Availability of Scientific Publications) is a co-operative network of partners whose aim is to
improve worldwide access to information. INASP-Health is a cooperative network for organizations concerned with the provision of reliable information for health professionals in resource-poor countries. Their activities include: the INASP-Health Directory, an advisory and liaison service, needs and provision database, and a discussion forum.
The objective of the World Health Organization (WHO) in Geneva, Switzerland is the attainment by all persons of the highest possible level of health.  WHO acts as the directing and coordinating authority on international health work; promotes improved teaching in the health professions; furnishes appropriate technical assistance; and promotes and coordinates biomedical and health services research. The WHO Library, in the Division of Publishing, Language and Library Services, supports the work of WHO by offering its knowledge bank of supportive evidence and global information resources to all.  They provide access to their collections on international public health and development, including a valuable historical collection.  All forms of the Library's collections are referenced in its electronic database (WHOLIS), available to the world via the Web. The Library also provides a virtual reference desk.

The International Federation for Information and Documentation/Fédération Internationale d'Information et de Documentation (FID), representing organizations and individuals in over 90 nations, aims to: advance the frontiers of science and technology; improve competitiveness of business, industry and national economies; strengthen possibilities for development and enhance the quality of life wherever possible; improve the ability of decision-makers to make appropriate decisions; stimulate educational strategies and life-long learning; make expression possible in all sectors of the Information Society including the arts and humanities; and strive and continue to be at the leading edge of the development of the management of information.
The U.S.-based Medical Library Association (MLA) is a professional organization of more than 1,200 institutions and 3,800 professionals in the health information field. MLA's International Cooperation Section, established in 1989, provides opportunities for participation in international cooperation projects; promotes awareness of international issues; provides a mechanism for addressing and responding to the needs of international members; and fosters communication in the international library area. The Section sponsors a Job Exchange Program (which includes international job exchanges, international visits to libraries, and hosting international librarians), a Journals Exchange, and the Cunningham Memorial International Fellowship.  The Cunningham Fellowship assists in the education and training of health sciences librarians from countries outside the United States and Canada.

The European Association for Health Information and Libraries is a professional association for librarians and information officers working in medical and health science libraries in Europe. EAHIL encourages professional development, improves cooperation and enables exchanges of experience amongst its members. The association counts about 500 members from 25 European countries.
EAHIL President: Manuela Colombi, Janssen-Cilag SpA; Via Buonarroti, 23, 20093 COLOGNO MONZESE (Mi); Tel: 39 02 2510 526, Fax: 39 02 2510 530; E-Mail:

The Association for Health Information and Libraries in Africa (AHILA) was established as a consortium of African Medical Librarians
in 1980 with support from the World Health Organization.  They meet regularly every two years.  The objectives of the Association are to: promote closer association between health information professionals; promote a high standard for health information services, education and research in Africa; work in close collaboration with national and international health organisations and learned societies in full mutual respect of  their objectives; and participate in international activities in the field of health sciences information
Membership of AHILA constitutes institutions providing medical and allied scientific information in Africa as well as persons who are
actively engaged in providing health related information services or who hold recognised professional qualifications in librarianship or
related field.   AHILA published the African Index Medicus.  They also sponsor a discussion list for health librarians and documentalists from Africa. To join, send a request to Irene Bertrand at You may find information on AHILA by using the search engine at the WHO Website.
The Health Libraries Group of the United Kingdom has over 25,000 members, throughout the UK and in more than 100 countries overseas,  who work in all sectors, including business and industry, further and higher education, schools, local and central government departments and agencies, the health service, the voluntary sector and national public libraries.

International Congress on Medical Librarianship (ICML): Every five years, the world’s medical librarians gather together to celebrate the medical librarian profession, to hear and see the latest developments, and to meet old and new friends and exchange news and ideas. The next ICML will take place in London on July 2-5, 2000.


The IFLA Journal features articles and reports on subjects ranging from management and information technology, education and research to news on regional activities in the international library and information scene. Abstracts for the articles are provided in  English, French, Spanish, German and Russian. The journal is published six times yearly.
The Bulletin of the Medical Library Association (BMLA) contains articles on international health sciences librarianship and on the role of the Medical Library Association in international health sciences librarianship.
The Tables of Contents (1995-present) for Focus on International & Comparative Librarianship are available online.
For more information, consult International & Comparative Librarianship: Journals at

The following are some Websites, in addition to those listed elsewhere in the article, for those interested in international medical librarianship.

International and Comparative Librarianship:  Listing, with links, of libraries, foundations, organizations, networks, schools, journals, and listservs in the field of international and comparative librarianship; last updated January 1998
International Medical Libraries on the Web: This is a  world-wide collection of medical, nursing and healthcare libraries linked together on the Web.
Medical/Health Sciences Libraries on the Web:  Listing of medical and health sciences libraries throughout the world as well as related medical information sources.

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Advisory Board Members

LEAF-VN has added several new Advisory Board Members since our last newsletter in February 1999.  Below are short biographies for some of these new Members:
Dr. Gary E. Gorman
School of Communications & Information Management
Victoria University of Wellington
Wellington, New Zealand
Dr. Gorman is a Senior Lecturer in Library and Information Sciences at Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand. Dr. Gorman trained as a librarian in the UK where he worked as a research institute librarian.  His special teaching interests are in collection management, human resources management and research methods, but professionally he is interested in all aspects of information work in developing countries.  He has published extensively (more than a dozen books); the latest being Collection Management for the 21st Century: A Handbook for Librarians (Greenwood Press), Qualitative Research for the Information Professional: A Practical Handbook (Library Association Publishing), and Library and Information Services in China (Scarecrow Press). He is editor/associate editor/reviews editor of several scholarly and professional journals: Asian Libraries; Australian Library Journal; Library Collections, Acquisitions, and Technical Services; Collection Building, New Library World, etc.  He travels extensively in Asia and with his partner, Lan Anh Tran, is engaged in a series of research and training projects related to Vietnam, and is a regular lecturer/workshop facilitator at Hanoi Cultural University, NACESTID and other institutions.

Donald C. Hausrath

Don Hausrath has over 25 years experience in information center administration, including designing, budgeting, opening and evaluating specialized clearinghouses, academic libraries, and information centers.  He holds a MLIS from UC Berkeley; and did further graduate studies at the University of Maryland with a Jefferson Fellowship.
Don served as Director of the US Information Agency Library Division for 4 years where he directed a staff of 52, including 16 Foreign Service librarians consulting abroad at 200 USIS information centers throughout the world. He recently established specialized clearinghouses dependent upon electronic resources in universities and public libraries in 5 sites in Russia, and in US government sites in Moscow, Vilnius, Riga, Tallinn, Minsk and St. Petersburg.  Earlier, he was involved in similar projects in Tokyo, Bangkok, Manila, Taipei, and New Delhi. In India, he directed the Indo-American Publishing project. He was the founding director of a community college library in Michigan and California. Serving as a consultant to a 1998 study involving workshops with librarians and administrators throughout California resulted in the state funding the integration of information literacy skills throughout the 106-campus community college system.
Don has spoken at library association meetings in New Zealand, the Philippines, Taiwan, and the People’s Republic of China and has been a participant in training programs in New Delhi, Calcutta, Singapore, Frankfurt, Moscow, Honolulu, Manila, and throughout Russia and the Baltic region.  He has contributed to Library Hi Tech, the Bowker Annual of Library and Book Trade Almanac, the Proceedings of the Chinese-American Librarians Association and the Encyclopedia of Library and Information Science
among other publications. In 1998-99 he taught the International Librarianship course at the College of Library and Information Services at the University of Maryland and various online courses at Gavilan College, California. This Spring Semester he serves on a team integrating online information literacy components into the Nursing and Health curriculum at Gavilan.
Regina R. Reynolds
Head, National Serials Data Program
Library of Congress
101 Independence Avenue. S.E.
Washington, DC, USA 20540-4160
Ms. Reynolds received her M.L.S. from the University of Michigan in 1976.  She has worked at the Library of Congress since 1976 where she received the Library of Congress Special Achievement Award in 1998, and the Library of Congress Meritorious Service Award in 1979 and 1980.  Ms. Reynolds authored a preconference booklet for the International Conference on National Bibliographic Services, IFLA Universal Bibliographic Control and International MARC Core Programme in November 1998 entitled "Harmonizing Bibliographic Control of Serials in the Digital Age." Ms. Reynolds' outstanding knowledge of the issues in the bibliographic control of serials is evidenced by her activities in the CONSER program, including presenting at CONSER meetings and working on AACR revisions.  She is a contributor to SISAC News and is a member of the editorial boards of Serials Review and Annals of Improbable Research.  She is the 1999 recipient of the Bowker/Ulrich's Serials Librarianship Award which is presented for distinguished contributions to serials librarianship through participation in professional associations and/or library education programs, contributions to the body of serials literature, research in the areas of serials, or development of tools or methods to enhance access to or management of serials.

New address for Dr. Mary F. Nichols:
International Education and Cultural Exchange
1511 N. McAllister Ave.
Tempe, AZ 85281, USA

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 Members in the News

Sharon E. Hunt, LEAF-VN Newsletter Editor, has been appointed Chair of the Ida and George Eliot Prize Jury for the Medical Library Association.  The Ida and George Eliot Prize is awarded annually for a work published in the preceding calendar year that has been judged most effective in furthering medical librarianship. Ms. Hunt has also been appointed page editor for Ask NOAH About: Spinal Cord and Head Injuries and  Ask Noah About: Parkinson's Disease  New York Online Access to Health (NOAH) is a bilingual health information Web site (English and Spanish) which seeks to provide high quality full-text health information for consumers that is accurate, timely, relevant and unbiased.

Vinh-The Lam's, LEAF-VN Project Director, paper "Issues in Library Development for Vietnam" has been published on Asian Libraries volume 8, issue 10, 1999; pp. 371-379 ; ISSN: 1017-6748. Mr. Lam also has had a paper accepted for publication in a festschrift for Professor Pauline Atherton Cochrane to be published by University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (UIUC) in November 1999. The paper is entitled "Enhancing Subject Access to Monographs in Online Public Access Catalogs: Table of Contents Added to Bibliographic Records." Mr. Lam was a member of a panel at the American Society for Information Science (ASIS) Annual Meeting in Washington, D.C., on Monday, November 1 at 1:30 p.m. The panel theme is "Knowledge Organization and Use: The Views of the Caregivers (aka Librarians)." His topic is "Organizational and Technical Issues in Providing Access to Electronic Journals." Vinh-The Lam's paper "Cong Nghe Thong Tin Trong Nen Kinh Te Thi Truong" (Information Technology in the Market Economy), presented at Hanoi University of Technology, Faculty of Economics and Management in March 1998, is now available online at During the academic year 1998-1999, Vinh-The Lam has also published 7 articles in Toronto-based Vietnamese publications, most of which were research papers making use of US Government declassified documents. As a result of this, Mr. Lam was invited by The Vietnam Center of Texas Tech University to attend the 2000 Vietname Conference entitled "The Overseas Vietnamese Experience" to be held in March 31 - April 1, 2000. Mr. Lam attended the Canadian Library Association Annual Conference in Toronto, Ontario, Canada where he made a presentation on LEAF-VN at the Business Session of the Third World Library Interest Group on June 16.

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Websites and Web Resources of Interest

Listed below are Websites and Web resources of value to those interested in Asian library issues.  Consult the Websites for more information.

Information Professional Asia Website
The Information Professional Asia Website (formerly the Asian Libraries Forum) provides news, links and a monthly theme on issues affecting the profession, and the art and science of  managing, resourcing, and providing information on Asia.
Asian Libraries

Asian Libraries: The Library and Information Management Journal for Asia and the Pacific is the only Asian regional journal for library and information sciences professionals.  The journal was first published in 1992 and in 1997 it went online with access available through the Internet.  The journal covers issues relating to library and information services in Asia, the work of library organizations and associations, conferences and meetings, as well as services and products from publishers and suppliers.  It covers all areas of interest to library and information professionals around the world, with particular reference to Asia including: Information technology - Information management - Preservation and outreach - Networking/resource sharing - Education and training - Architecture and design - Collection development - Policy, censorship, control, etc. - Professional development - The Internet - Conference reports.

The Asian Studies WWW Virtual Library is a directory of WWW sites on Asian Studies provided by the Australian National University (ANU) and is updated almost daily.

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Events, Conferences, Seminars, Meetings Related to Vietnam
The Vietnam Center of Texas Tech University will sponsor the 2000 Vietname Conference entitled "The Overseas Vietnamese Experience" to be held in March 31 - April 1, 2000.
Other Websites with information on international conferences and events include:
        American Libraries: the magazine of the American Library Association Datebook
        The Publishers' Yellow Page: Conferences & Seminars
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  Poem by Le-Thi-Han

Huế Thương

Huế thương biết mấy cho vừa
Thương tà áo tím qua đường phượng bay
Thương em má đỏ hây hây
Nón che nửa mặt tóc mây nồng nàn
Thương o An cựu mơ màng
Nhớ chàng Bến Ngự ôm đàn ngóng trông
Hoàng hôn tím ngắt trên sông
Tơ trời nhả xuống giữa giòng vấn vương

Huế thương biết mấy cho vừa
Thương đường vô Nội mịt mờ gió sương
Thương em áo trắng thẩn thờ
Thương con đò cũ còn chờ người xưa
Thương đêm trăng lạnh cô phòng
Vẳng đâu tiếng hát Nam Bình Nam Ai
Thương mưa rả rích Chợ Mai
Mắt hoang vu nhớ những ngày xa xưa

Huế thương biết mấy cho vừa
Thương mùa nước lũ thương mưa dầm dề
Thương em ray rứt ê chề
Ngoài hiên gió lạnh não nề lòng đau
Em ơi tình đợi kiếp nào
Nhân sinh như thể chiêm bao giữa ngày
Thôi đừng trăn trở hao gầy
Nhìn sông nước chảy buồn thay chuyện đời

Huế thương biết mấy cho vừa
Thương em thương bạn thương người thương ta
Thương dân ăn ở hiền hòa
Với tay lên hỏi sao Trời không tha
Bảy hai, sáu tám, năm ba
Còn hai tháng nữa đã là thiên niên
Bỗng đâu bão lụt liên miên
Phải chăng nặng nợ người Miên người Hời

Huế giờ đổ nát tơi bời
Trả sao cho hết nợ đời Huyền Trân
Nhìn quanh biển khổ mênh mông
Từ bi cửa Phật xót thương phận người
Mặc cho bão táp phong ba
Áo nâu hôm sớm xông pha giúp người
Mặc cho gió cuốn mưa sa
Cho em manh áo, đưa bà miếng cơm

Huế thương biết mấy cho vừa
Mấy mùa đói rét, mấy mùa xót xa
Trời cao biển rộng bao la
Cánh chim viễn xứ quê nhà ngóng trông
Dẫu cho đời có nhọc nhằn
Giúp sao cho Huế mãi còn tiếng thơm
Dẫu cho lưu lạc muôn phương
Người con xứ Huế tình thương không nghèo

Huế ơi Huế giữ tiếng thơm
Giữ cho phượng đỏ mai vàng thắm tươi

Motherland (1)
Many long years have I not seen my motherland
not coming back to the green bamboo hedges
Warm golden sunshine the other side of the fence
The smile from thence where has it gone

Many long years have I left my motherland
Visiting with nostalgia the Ben Cat misty with dew
Mirrored images dancing on water the drifting clouds over Doi Vong Canh
Boats returning aimlessly float near the Bai Dau shores

Who's yearning and who's leaving who makes promises
Who loves who remains who's longing for whom
Spring showers summer sun autumn leaves turned color
Winter comes slower days only add to loneliness
Who's piling up every passing years
Keep for me my innocent days

Many long years have I not seen my motherland
A life of vagrancy on a foreign land
Many seasons of rain and shine across the thousand miles
Through the ups and downs of life mingled with to whose country land

Many long years have I left my motherland
For whom do I lovingly search in vastness beyond
Small arms furtively embrace the innocent childhood days
Half way around the earth - suddenly a world away

Copy right  ờ by Le thi Han.

(1)Bài trên đây là bài dịch của ''Quê Mẹ'' đã đăng trong LEAF-VN Newsletter Tập 1, số 1 / Thu 1999.

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 Editorial Information

The LEAF-VN Newsletter: the newsletter of the Library and Education Assistance Foundation for Vietnam/Bản Tin LEAF-VN: Bản tin của Hội Hỗ Trợ Thư Viện và Giáo Dục Việt Nam (ISSN 1524-363X ) is published twice a year. It is available online at the organization's homepage at <>

Please submit articles and news items to:
     Sharon E. Hunt

Deadline for submission of articles for Volume 2, Number 1 is February 15, 2000.

Editorial Board:
    Sharon E. Hunt (
    Vinh-The Lam (
    William Anderson (
    Le thi Han (

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Last modified: 17 December 1999
Questions? Comments? ờ  Sharon E. Hunt  (