Much has been made of threats and challenges facing libraries and archives in our time of accelerated political, economic, social and cultural change. Yet there is increasing international recognition of libraries and access to information as a public common good. One of the cornerstones, with education, in the realisation and maintenance of free, equitable and inclusive societies. This formulation informs the IFLA-UNESCO Public Library Manifesto 2022, the MONDIACULT Final Declaration of the same year, and this year’s UNESCO Framework for Culture and Arts Education. All steps along the way to the updating of the sustainable development goals. Against the backdrop of physical and virtual threats and challenges to libraries and archives at the global, regional and local levels, this talk to consider how cultural institutions and sites of information and knowledge are framed as a global common good in the promotion of human rights, sustainable development, and peace and stability.

Ana Filipa Vrdoljak

Ana Filipa Vrdoljak

Ana Filipa Vrdoljak is Professor of Law and UNESCO Chair on International Law and Cultural Heritage at the University of Technology Sydney. She is co-coordinator of the UNESCO-UNITWIN Network on Culture in Emergencies. She is author of International Law, Museums and the Return of Cultural Objects (CUP 1e 2006, 2e forthcoming); and editor of Oxford Handbook of International Cultural Heritage Law (OUP 2020) with Francesco Francioni, and The 1970 UNESCO and 1995 UNIDROIT Conventions: A Commentary (OUP, 2024) with Andrzej Jakubowski and Alessandro Chechi. She is general editor of the OUP book series Cultural Heritage Law and Policy and Oxford Commentaries on International Cultural Heritage Law and member of the management committee of the International Journal of Cultural PropertyShe holds a PhD in Law from the University of Sydney.

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Ana Filipa Vrdoljak