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AFRO-NETS> An International Training Programme on "Information"

  • Subject: AFRO-NETS> An International Training Programme on "Information"
  • From: Paul Nieuwenhuysen <pnieuwen@vub.ac.be>
  • Date: Tue, 12 Feb 2002 12:15:47 -0500 (EST)

An International Training Programme on "Information"

Scientific and Technological Information Management in Universities
and Libraries: an Active Training Environment

Deadline for grants is end of February, 2002


This International Training Programme is planned to take place mainly
in Brussels, Belgium, during October, November, December 2002. The
initiative has been approved by the Flemish Interuniversity Council
(VLIR) and is sponsored by the Belgian Government (DGIS/DGIC). This
fits in a series of similar international training activities that
have been organized since 1991, named MIST 1, 2, 3, KNOW-HOW and

This initiative is aimed primarily at persons with a university de-
gree, who work in universities, information and documentation cen-
ters, and libraries, including of course university libraries, and
who have a few years of practical experience.

The term Active Training Environment in the title of the project is
not only made up to obtain the acronym STIMULATE for the training
programme, but it reflects our wish to create really an environment
in which each participant is stimulated to get involved actively,
supported by the lecturers and the infrastructure provided by the
training programme. This fits well into the general worldwide trend
away from "teaching" to "learning management".

The main aim of this International Training Program is to offer a
stimulating learning environment to participants, who have a function
as information intermediary in the area of science and technology, so
that they can sharpen their skills in collecting, storing, retriev-
ing, presenting and managing information, which can be of great bene-
fit to the teaching and research activities going on in their insti-
tute and to the further development of their organisation and region.

More specific objectives are:

* to provide participants with a clearer view on the importance of
information in general and for their environment in particular,
* to guide them in retrieving information that is publicly accessible
on an international scale, and
* to learn them to store, organize, present, manage, publish informa
tion resources at personal, institutional, regional or national

After an active involvement in this International Training Program,
every participant will have improved the ability to

* appreciate and explain the importance of access to information for
their organisation
* retrieve information from the Internet
* present information to users and potential users, using appropriate
information technology
* store information for later retrieval and access by potential us-
ers, using information technology
* train interested persons in the use and management of information,
using appropriate presentation techniques
* apply quantitative methods in decision making related to informa-
tion systems and services
* contribute to the planning of the (further) development of an in-
formation service
* communicate through the Internet with users of information, infor-
mation providers, colleagues,...

It is our intention to organize the sessions in such a way that --the
first month is a module at introduction level, --the second month is
a module at intermediate level, and --the third month is a module at
a more advanced level. Thanks to this modular approach and organiza-
tion it may make sense to participate during only one or two of the
three months, depending on expertise. However, the available scholar-
ships are granted only to persons who will participate for the full
three months.

First the participants will be offered an orientation tour of the
University and the Library. Then some of the following subjects will
be covered.. Of course, due to the limitation in the time available,
not all the mentioned subjects can be discussed in each training pro-
gramme, but a SELECTION will be made by the organisers, depending on
the availability of suitable expert lecturers.

Part I
* Microcomputer systems: hardware.
* Microcomputer operating systems.
* Microcomputer systems: applications software.
* Text editing; word processing; desktop publishing.
* Scientific writing methods.
* Presentation of data, using a microcomputer.
* Data communication; computer networks.
* Internet.
* Internet services.
* Electronic mail.
* World-Wide Web; hypertext and hypermedia.
* Introductory concepts about information.
* Internet-based information resources: introduction.
* Disks for computers.
* CD-R, CD-RW.
* Image processing; graphics file formats; photo/image editing.
* Creating charts.
* Multimedia / Hypermedia.
* Statistics for information science: introduction.

Part II
* Data-communications networks and librarians.
* Selecting and procuring a computer system; writing a proposal for a
computer implementation.
* The information industry and the information market.
* ISBD = International Standard Bibliographic Description.
* Formats for computer-based cataloguing = MARC formats.
* National libraries and national bibliographies.
* Subject classification schemes and thesaurus systems.
* Document collection development.
* Consortia of libraries for the acquisition of electronic journals
and databases.
* Bibliographic databases.
* Search strategies.
* Online information retrieval and database searching.
* Online access databases about journal articles.
* Electronic newsletters and journals.
* Computer-network based interest groups.
* Patent information.
* Online systems versus CD-ROM.
* Software packages for local storage and retrieval of bibliographic
* Introduction to the CDS/ISIS software package for information stor-
age and retrieval.
* The application of CDS/ISIS: searching.
* The application of CDS/ISIS: editing data in a database.
* The application of CDS/ISIS: output of selected data to file or
* The application of CDS/ISIS: developing a database structure.
* The application of CDS/ISIS: indexing data for fast retrieval.
* History and future of ISIS.
* ISIS for Windows: WINISIS
* Queuing theory.
* Citation analysis.
* Citation searching.
* The bibliometric laws.
* Scientometrics.
* Theoretical and quantitative aspects of information retrieval.
* Evaluations in information retrieval; evaluation of information re-
trieval systems.
* Library automation.
* Online Public Access Catalogues (OPACs).
* Management of a library and information service.
* Architecture of libraries.
* Orientation of information users; relations with information users.
* Archives and records management.
* Archives in the domain of science and technology.
* Interlibrary lending and co-operation; document delivery: an intro-
* Geographic Information Systems (GIS): an introduction.
* Development of a national or regional information network.
* The information society.
* Cultural aspects of the information society and information tech-
nology transfer.
* Copyright; information security; trans-border data flow.
* Writing a project proposal (for instance related to the establish-
ment of an information network).
* CD-ROM in a local area network.
* Developing a web site.
* Assessing the influence of scientific journals.
* Z39.50 and related protocols for access to databases.
* Methods for access to databases through Internet.
* Providing access to information through public Internet worksta-
* Client-server systems
* Conservation/preservation of printed documents.
* Conservation/preservation of digital documents.
* 2-3 Case studies.

Part III
* Setting up an electronic newsletter
* Evaluating web sites
* Databases (and ISIS in particular) through the WWW.
* Downloading of information and record format conversion: princi-
* Downloading of information and record format conversion: applica-
tion of Fangorn with ISIS.
* Implementing integrated database-design in ISIS.
* An advanced application of MARC in ISIS.
* Programming in ISIS.
* Extensions of classical WWW. (Client-based and server-based)
* Document+ program hybrids.

Part IV
* Informetric aspects of the Internet.
* Artificial intelligence in information science.
* Electronic journals: implementation in a library.

About half the time, the participants are guided by experts invited
to the university, and they use the other half time to solve prob-
lems, to make exercises, to use microcomputers and Internet, to pre-
pare discussions, for self study,...

Besides the formal, guided course activities, the participants have
access like any regular student at our university
* to several rooms equipped with microcomputers connected to the
* to the university library which offers printed material, CD-ROMs
and PCs with Internet access,
* to the university restaurant at low student prices.

In addition to the courses taking place at the university campus,
study visits are organised. Possible visits:

* to the Royal (National) Library, in Brussels, Belgium
* to the European Patent Office in Brussels, Belgium
* to the Information Service of the Geology Department of the Royal
Museum on Africa, in Tervuren near Brussels, Belgium
* to the library of the Universitaire Instelling Antwerpen, in Ant-
werp, Belgium, and to the postgraduate school on information and
library science which is organised at that university, guided by a
inter-university board
* to the library of the UFSIA (another component of the University of
* to the library of the KUL (university) in Leuven, Belgium
* to VLIZ information and documentation center in Oostende/Ostend,
* to the Documentation Department of the KIT (the Royal Tropical In-
stitute), and to the high school on libraries, documentation and
information, both in Amsterdam, The Netherlands.

More culturally oriented guided visits are included also; these may
include trips to the old cities of Brussels, Antwerp, Bruges, Amster-
dam, and to the North Sea coast.

Social activities planned:
* Welcome reception with drinks and some food.
* Evening with tasting of some of the world famous Belgian beers ac-
companied by some Belgian food.
* Farewell gathering with drinks and food.

Participation/registration fee/costs:

Free of charge(!) for 12 participants from developing countries, se-
lected by the organizers, VL.I.R. (the Flemish Inter-university Coun-
cil) and DGIS/DGIC. They also receive a grant to cover the costs of
accommodation and an airplane return ticket. The long, detailed grant
application form is available as a PDF file through the Internet from

and more directly from

There you can also find an explanation of the procedures to follow to
apply for the grant. That PDF file can be printed with the suitable
program (Adobe Acrobat Reader) provided free of charge by Adobe
through the WWW: http://www.adobe.com/prodindex/acrobat/readstep.html

Grant applications must be received by VLIR before the end of Febru-

If this procedure is not suitable for you, you can ask your local
Belgian embassy for a printed version of the application form for the
grant, or you can ask more information through email:

All correspondence regarding these grants should be directed to
VL.I.R., and NOT to the organizer of this particular Program.

The ideal participant applying for a grant is younger than 40 years,
and will be able to apply what has been learned directly in a profes-
sional scientific or technical environment afterwards.

About 8 other persons can pay a fee that is small in comparison with
similar programs. The costs mentioned do NOT include air travel,
meals and accommodation, but do include transport from the airport
upon arrival, course materials, study visits and social activities.
The cost of living in Belgium is not exceptional.

-to participate during the full 3 months: 2,400 Euros
-to participate during 2 full months of your choice: 1,800 Euros
-to participate during 1 full month of your choice: 1,000 Euros
-to participate to particular items selected from the program: 30
Euros per module of a half day

To register, send the registration form by classical mail together
with an international bank transfer payable to

University Library V.U.B.
Pleinlaan 2
B-1050 Brussel, Belgium

with no need for any bank account numbers. (If this simple procedure
is not suitable for you, however, then you can transfer the required
sum of money to the following bank account of the V.U.B.:

Fortis Bank
Warandeberg 3
B-1000 Brussels, Belgium
Account number 001-0686459-66
Remark: for WD006240 BIBL WER3

The money received by the VUB must be transferred internally to this
account of the University Library. (Without this remark, the money
may be not retraceable anymore.)

We advice you to register before July or as early as possible after-
wards, because student rooms become available each year in July at
the end of the first session of examinations. First come, first
served: the arrival of your participation fee determines who can par-

The organizers of the Program normally book a single room in advance
as accommodation for each participant, with a high quality to price
ratio, unless a participant writes us that they take care of accommo-
dation on their own; participants pay for their own accommodation.

E-mail (Internet):

Tel: + 32-2-629-2429 (or 32-2-629 2609)
Fax: + 32-2-629-2693 (or 2282)
Telex: 61051 vubco-b

Paul Nieuwenhuysen or Patrick Vanouplines
STIMULATE, University Library
Free University Brussels = Vrije Universiteit Brussel
Pleinlaan 2
1050 Brussels, Belgium

The training is mainly organized at the University Library of the
Vrije Universiteit Brussel (V.U.B), close to the rich cultural city
of Brussels, Belgium.

Information about Brussels (and Belgium) can be found through the
WWW; see for instance:

As study trips are perhaps organised to places in neighbouring coun-
tries like The Netherlands and France, participants should try to ob-
tain also a visum for those countries (so called Schengen visa).

Other information:

Language used is English. The course director is Dr. Paul Nieuwen-
huysen, professor at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel and guest profes-
sor at the Universitaire Instelling Antwerpen, Science and technology
librarian, and Head of information and documentation, of the Vrije
Universiteit Brussel.

Assistant/co-worker is Dr. Patrick Vanouplines, hydrologist, scien-
tific information expert at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel.

Other official supervisors and co-promoters of this programme are

Prof. Dr. Ludo Simons, University of Antwerp, president-elect of the
Steering Committee of the inter-university postgraduate study pro-
gramme on Information and Library Science.

Prof. Dr. Raf De Keyser, K.U.L., Leuven, physicist and head of the
K.U.L. university library, one of the largest libraries of Belgium.

Participants obtain a certificate when they have participated ac-
tively and successfully.

The Free University of Brussels (Vrije Universiteit Brussel - V.U.B.)
campus is located just outside the centre of the city, and can easily
be reached by Metro (subway), tram and bus.

Some more information can be found on the WWW starting from:

A group communication system is available through

The group is named "itp-stimulate". Anybody interested can become a
member free of charge.

You can obtain the grant application form from the VLIR web site: see

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