Library and Information Association of New Zealand Aotearoa

Library and Information Association of New Zealand Aotearoa

The New Zealand Library Association, trading as LIANZA, [] is the professional organization for library and information workers in New Zealand, and also promotes library and information education and professional development within New Zealand.


The purpose of LIANZA is to serve and promote “the interests of New Zealand library and information industry and professionals by providing continuing professional development, professional awards and recognition, publications and resources, advocacy and collegial support.” (LIANZA website)


The organization was founded in 1910 as the New Zealand Library Association.Fact|date=September 2007 Membership consisted of public libraries, the Parliamentary Library, and libraries at Victoria University of Wellington. In 1939, it became a fully incorporated society. By 1990, the organization began to focus, at the behest of its members, on professional development. During the restructuring and other changes that followed, the organization became LIANZA. The current president of LIANZA is Vye Perrone.


LIANZA is “governed by an elected National Council, chaired by the LIANZA President and administered through its National Office, who act in accordance with the association’s Rules and Code of Practice.” (LIANZA website)


LIANZA’s headquarters are located in Wellington, New Zealand. LIANZA is a member of the International Federation of Library Associations (IFLA). LIANZA accepts both individual and organizational members, the only requirement being an interest in library or information science and contains approximately 1,702 total members (both individual and organizational). In addition to participating in events and opportunities offered by LIANZA itself, members are encouraged to be involved in their regional communities and in Special Interest Groups that foster professional relationships in specific library and information studies fields.


The organization is governed by its National Council, which is chaired by the President and based at the National Office in Wellington. In addition to the national association, the LIANZA community includes: eleven special interest groups [] (SIGs); six Regional Councils [] ; as well as affiliations with the New Zealand Law Librarians Association (NZLLA) [] ; School Librarians Association of New Zealand Aotearoa (SLANZA) [] ; Te Rōpū Whakahau [] — a national organization for Maori librarians and information specialists founded as a LIANZA special interest group in 1992 and which became an independent organization in 1996; and New Zealand Branch of the International Association of Music Libraries [] (IAML (NZ)).

The six regions in which the regional councils are located are: Hikuwai (formerly Auckland) Region; Waikato/Bay of Plenty Region; Ikaroa (formerly Central) Region; Te Upoko o te Ika a Maui Region; Aoraki Region; and the Otago/Southland Region. The Maori names of many of these regional groups reflect the importance of biculturalism in New Zealand. Special Interest Groups include groups for library fields such as cataloguing, tertiary (academic) librarianship, health librarianship, information technology, preservation, special librarianship, and public librarianship, as well as a bicultural group, regional groups such as the East Coast Information Network, a Special Libraries Group for the north of New Zealand, and the Taranaki Information group. Other groups include the Special Needs SIG, the Research SIG and the Library Assistants’ SIG.

LIANZA is responsible for several publications. Chief among these is Library Life, LIANZA’s magazine for its members, and the New Zealand Library and Information Management Journal (NZLIMJ).

Professional development and continuing education

LIANZA offers a national conference annually, in which issues pertaining to librarianship in New Zealand and across the world are discussed. Although LIANZA does not currently accredit library and information education in New Zealand, the LIANZA website does provide a summary of the many New Zealand library qualifications. The Master of Library and Information Studies (offered by Victoria University of Wellington) and the PhD is accepted in the United States of America, the United Kingdom and other countries. The LIANZA website also offers a listing of defunct library qualifications for comparison. The organization also sponsors many awards, including (but not limited to) the LIANZA Children’s Book Awards for distinguished children’s literature by an author who is a resident of New Zealand, industry awards such as the 3M Award for Innovation in Libraries and the YBP/Lindsay and Croft award recognizing contributions in collections development and management, acquisition, and cataloguing. In addition, LIANZA sponsors several scholarships for continuing research in several aspects of the field of librarianship. Study awards are awarded to library professionals who wish to further their professional development. LIANZA also offers student awards and several professional recognition awards.

Professional registration

At the Annual General Meeting on 10 October 2006, LIANZA members endorsed by 70% the motion to introduce the Professional Registration Scheme, initially prepared by the LIANZA Taskforce on Professional Registration in August, 2006. The scheme has two phases — transition and mature. The transition phase is for those already working in the library and information profession and holding a recognised library and information qualification. Anyone meeting these prerequistes has two years to join this phase of the scheme. The mature phase is for new graduates to the profession, who must have a library and information studies qualification at the graduate level. Once accepted into the scheme new graduates must undergo one year's supervision under a mentor before they are registered. In this period they must demonstrate that they have put into practice the professional body of knowledge for library and information professionals taught to them as part of their library and information studies. All those joining the scheme must revalidate their registration every 3 years. This involves keeping a journal planner of continuing professional development as well as other activities that demonstrate they have kept their professional body of knowledge current. The journal planner is reviewed by a peer and then the professional registration board before registration is renewed. The registration scheme began on 1 July 2007.

Differences between LIANZA, ALA and CILIP

LIANZA does not currently offer accreditation to academic institutions offering library and information studies degrees. Professional degrees and education in librarianship have been available in New Zealand since 1946, but the educational style of New Zealand library schools differs from that of North American library schools. The LIANZA website and related online content also shows less involvement in legislative issues (of course, the New Zealand government is not the British, American or Canadian government). LIANZA may be equally involved in lobbying, but much of the online information available from LIANZA simply presents facts about copyright, freedom of information, and other “hot” topics rather than offering an official stance.

External links

* Te Ropu Whakahau Partnership
* LIANZA Taskforce on Professional Registration (2006). Proposed Professional Registration Scheme for the New Zealand Library and Information Profession.

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