Symposium on Academic Frontiers Held by Journal of Library Science in China

In 2015, Journal of Library Science in China starts a new column Frontiers Forum to publish key papers that are prospective, strategic, and thoughtful. The editorial office will invite well-known scholars and professionals to discuss certain hot topics in depth provoke more thoughts and generate dialogues. 

On Janurary 14th 2015, the Opinions on Accelerating the Construction of a Modern Public Culture Service System (Using Opinions for short below) and the Guiding Standards for National Basic Public Culture Service 2015-2020 (Using Standards for short below) were issued officially by the General Office of the CPC Central Committee and the General Office of the State Council. On January 15th, Journal of Library Science in China held a Frontiers Forum in Suzhou City in the subject of “Establishing Public Culture Service Institution: Interpretation and Contemplation by Libraries” gathering specialists and scholars from library science and other fields to discuss the theoretical and practical problems of Library Science in China from academic perspective based on the policy content of the Opinions and the Standards. Experts and scholars including LI Guoxin, FAN Bingsi, WU Zhinan, LI Chaoping, QIU Guanhua, ZHANG Mingli, JIN Dezheng, JIN Wugang, etc, participated in the discussion.

In the symposium, Professor LI Guoxin, who was involved in drafting of the two policy documents introduced the policy background of the Opinions and Standards and gave a comprehensive interpretation of the highlights of the policy. The Opinions and Standards are the programmatic documents for the establishment of China’s public culture service system in the next five years. The basic guiding ideology is to prompt the standardization and equalization of fundamental public culture service; the basic principle is to effectively protect the basic cultural rights of the masses and to realize the social equity; the primary goal is to build up a modern public culture service system which covers both urban and rural areas, functions efficiently and conveniently, and protects the bases while pursues the fairness. Around the guiding ideology, basic principle and primary goal, the Opinions raises a number of new proposals, such as prompting equity service based on standards, propelling the establishment of central-branch libraries based on county areas, pushing the basic reading for preschool children, promoting excellent publication as well as movies and dramas to primary and secondary school students, and paying close attention to left-behind women and children in rural China, etc., which deserve high attention of both library professionals and scholars. The experts and scholars expressed their opinions focusing on the Opinions and Standards and talked freely about the development prospects of China’s library enterprise.  

ZHUO Lianying, the managing editor-in-chief of Journal of Library Science in China, introduced the theme of the forum and the sub theme conceptions. On the basis of the full investigation on literature and practice, he put forward the related issues about Chinese library science theory and practice research according to relevant policies in Opinions and Standard. The issues include: 1) Responsibilities of public libraries in the public cultural service system at the province and local levels; 2) "Public reading" and "national reading" (social reading): the boundary of reading promotion by public libraries; 3) Library construction in the service of the regional equalization in counties; 4) Max benefits of public library service in the public cultural service system framework, including reforms and constructions of the organization and management system, budget management system and performance evaluation system; 5) Relationships between and integration of national standards (regulations), industry standards (regulations) and local standards (regulations). 6) Policy research of public library in the field of theory research, including library policy and signification about related theories in library science.

The participating experts and scholars discussed around the issues above, interpretation of Opinions, Standard and related research will be published in Journal of Library Science in China.