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Editorial 2019/1

Dear friends,

I have the pleasure of meeting with you over the summer issue of our periodical LIBRARY: Librarian Revue. We believe to have managed packing the 120 pages with interesting reading stuff consisting of three reviewed articles, a number of not reviewed contributions and two columns, one of them being a novice.

The first of the main articles is a theoretical study by Jiří Stodola, dealing with the concept of information in the context of epistemology and methodology; he delimits the meaning of this concept, describing four basic conceptions of the essential concepts (marginal realism, moderate realism, conceptualism and nominalism), introducing some examples of these types of approach in the information science. Further he explores the concept of definition and classification, handling three different approaches to this concept (realism, instrumentalism and the approach rejecting definitions) in works of different authors. In this context the author focuses also upon information as a transcendental concept that can be delimited only verbally, and even suggests that its further usage in the information science may be worth considering.

The substance of the second article by Slovak author Jela Steinerová consists in the analysis of the information environment of scientific communities, and namely both in general terms, and in the eyes of the scholars themselves. Making use of the outcome of a study of the information behaviour of 19 Slovak scholars  and of an international survey of the scientific data literacy (with the participation of 257 scholars from Slovakia) the author suggests concrete recommendations for a new model of an interactive scientific library and its services in the context of open science and digital science (the model of academic information ecologies; the necessity to do away with white spots and gaps in the information infrastructure), integration of management processes, planning and decision making related both to the research process and to the information one, etc.).

The third topic, one that is very far from the tradition of our periodical, concerns music. Jiří Mikuláš describes a collection of music materials unknown to the present day that have been preserved in the provost church of the Raising of the Holy Cross in Litomyšl. The study of this only recently discovered set of more than 400 pieces of sacral music of the 18th and 19th centuries brought new knowledge testifying not only to the high level of music played in that church and about the musical life in the provincial town of Litomyšl, but also the discovery of valuable compositions of mostly unknown composers and organists of said church.

The guru of the Czech librarianship PhDr. Vít Richter is going to celebrate his rounded-off birthday. Zlata Houšková presents him with a commemorative medallion written by her, describing his professional career. In joining these congratulations in the name of the editorial staff, we are wishing our nestor in particular reliable health, but also élan for his continuing work.

The position of national libraries within the librarian environment is always specific. This is not different in the case of the National Library of the Czech Republic. Unfortunately, our Czech specificity appears to be of the kind making the actual functioning of our National Library far from easy in the recent years, not to speak of its development. Let me use the words of Adolf Knoll, citing one of his articles (for which I am “glad”): „…The international renown of the National Library of the Czech Republic is much better than its position at home; quite often it has to face questions and attacks on the domestic stage, and even doubts thrown at its existence and the need of development – issues that are unthinkable elsewhere: as a rule, each national library in its substance is held for one of the treasures of the country .“ It is a pity that we often lack the awareness of this fact. The author, making use of a number of unique indicators, carried out an interesting comparative probe, showing in the light of the results that the Czech National Library, as compared with further selected European national libraries, assumes a very high standard, while fulfilling a number of additional functions in contrast to them. However, this is certainly not reflected by the interest and care at the side of the government as the guarantor of this public institution.

There is also a short treatise by Aleš Hrazdil about document indexation in the light of new scientific disciplines.

On 6th April 2019 the National Library ČR – Librarian Institute – organised a seminar on terminology. It was well accepted by the professional public. A brief summary of the resulting conclusions has been prepared and submitted by co-authors Jaroslava Citova and Anna Machová.

Actually, also the future of the librarian profession, as treated by Vladana Pillerová and Dana Smetanová, deserves full attention of all of us. The conclusions ensuing from the survey (implemented in the first phase of the project by the Common procedure of the social partners in preparing changes of the pension system) are very interesting and instructive.

However, let us turn to the close future. There is a conference in Olomouc ahead of us, under the title Libraries of today (the event is announced in the article of Veronika Chruščová). Let me invite you, for my person, among others to the Round table of editors “We are in a press” that is scheduled within that conference for 11th September, beginning at 12.30. We will handle editorial work, professional periodicals, publishing etc. We have taken the liberty of preparing a new column for you: Tips from the Library collection of librarian literature. We will chose interesting publications from the accruals to said library for our readers. This section is going to be reprinted in the magazine Knihovna plus (Library plus).

The copy will be rounded off by the column Novelties of the international librarian literature, this time handling a new and attractive theme, namely reading of electronic text in comparison with reading print outs. Its continuation will be found in the Winter issue, namely Library: Librarian Revue 2/2019.

We are pleased by your interest in publishing, and that is why we wish to remind you of the closing dates, and namely both for Knihovna plus –, and Knihovna: knihovnická revue –, which concerns the reviewed and not reviewed contributions.

What have we managed down to the D-day of this issue? What is under preparation?

Let me express my cordial thanks to all who shared the preparation of this issue.

Wishing you wonderful summer days and looking forward to your comments and contributions.

Renata Salátová

Dec 19, 2020
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