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Eurasian Academic Libraries Conference 2024: Conference Speakers

Keynote Speakers

Ismail Serageldin

Co-Chair of the Board of Nizami  Ganjavi International Center (NGIC), Emeritus Librarian of Alexandria, Former VP of the World Bank

Ismail Serageldin, Founding Director of the Bibliotheca Alexandrina (BA), the new Library of Alexandria, inaugurated in 2002, is currently, Emeritus Librarian, and member of the Board of Trustees of the Library of Alexandria. He serves as Chair and Member of a number of advisory committees for academic, research, scientific and international institutions, including as co-Chair of the Nizami Ganjavi International Center (NGIC), and serves as Patron of the International Science Council (ISC). 

He has held many international positions including as Vice President of the World Bank (1993–2000). He also co-chaired the African Union’s high level panel for Biotechnology (2006) and again for Science, Technology and Innovation (STI) in 2012-2013, and was a member of the ICANN Panel for the review of the internet future (2013). 

Dr. Serageldin has received many awards including: First recipient of Grameen Foundation (USA) Award for a lifetime commitment to combating poverty, (1999); Pablo Neruda Medal of Honor, awarded by the Government of Chile (2004); The Bajaj Award for promoting Ghandian values outside India (2006); Order of the Rising Sun – Gold and Silver Star awarded by the Emperor of Japan (2008); Champion of Youth Award by the World Youth Congress, Quebec (2008); Knight of the French Legion of Honor awarded by the President of France (2008); Africa Millennium Excellence Award for Lifetime Achievement Prize, Ghana (2010); The Public Welfare Medal, by the National Academy of Sciences, Washington DC (2011); Commander of the Order of Arts & Letters awarded by the government of France (2011); and the presidential medals from the republics of Azerbaijan (2015), Montenegro (2016); Albania (2017) and Macedonia (2019).  

He has lectured widely all over the world including delivering the Mandela Lecture (Johannesburg, 2011), the Nexus Lecture (Netherlands, 2011), the Keynote Address to the First International Summit of the Book (Washington DC, 2012). He was distinguished professor at Wageningen University and at the College de France. 

He has published over 100 books and monographs and over 500 papers on a variety of topics including biotechnology, rural development, sustainability, and the value of science to society. He holds a Bachelor of Science degree in engineering from Cairo University and Master’s degree and a PhD from Harvard University and has received 40 honorary doctorates. (Source)

Professor Judith Broady-Preston BA MA PhD MCLIP FHEA

Professor Emerita, Aberystwyth University and Editor-in-Chief of the Emerald journal, Global Knowledge, Memory and Communication (GKMC).

Previously Executive Dean and Director, Institute of Professional Development (IPD), Aberystwyth University and a member of the University Executive. With 8 departments and 350 staff, IPD was one of 6 faculties at Aberystwyth, delivering integrated flexible learning and addressing all aspects of professional development. An innovative mix of Academic and Professional Services departments, IPD incorporated the University Graduate School, the Department of Information Studies, Lifelong Learning, the Centre for Widening Participation, Equality and Social Inclusion and an Educational Resource Publisher (CAA) amongst the 8.

Author of 100+ research papers, her research interests include (1) impact, value (including cultural value) and performance measurement; (2) leadership strategies, organisational learning and culture; and (3) integrated flexible learning and professional development.

Awarded 7 major research prizes and numerous research grants, in addition to a Higher Education Academy National Teaching Award for an “Outstanding Contribution to Information and Computer Science” (2010). Expert reviewer for ESRC, AHRC, National Research Foundation (NRF), the Irish Research Council for the Humanities and Social Sciences, and the Academy of Science of South Africa amongst others.

Visiting Professorial Fellow, UCL Qatar (2019/20), with a research project Learning and leadership: organisational behaviour, culture, and change, and including a series of guest lectures and workshops for the local profession.

Editor-in-Chief of GKMC since 2011, European editor Journal of Educational Media and Library Sciences (JoEMLS), and an editorial board member of seven international journals and numerous international conferences. 

President Elect of the Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals (CILIP) UK in 2019, President (2020), and Immediate Past President (2021). IFLA contributions include Management and Marketing Section Committee Member (2009- 2017).

UK Role Model and Mentor, Leadership Foundation for Higher Education, Aurora Women in Leadership Programme (2012-2020) and institutional reviewer for the Quality Assurance Agency (QAA).

Emily Drabinski

Emily Drabinski is Associate Professor at the Queens (N.Y.) College Graduate School of Library and Information Studies. She edits Gender & Sexuality in Information Studies, a book series from Library Juice Press/Litwin Books.
Drabinski serves as the 2023-24 President of the American Library Association. 






Sherri Aldis

Director, United Nations Regional Information Centre in Brussels

The United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres appointed Sherri Aldis of Canada as Director of the United Nations Regional Information Centre (UNRIC) in Brussels. She assumed her duties on 14 February 2022.

A field office of the United Nations Department of Global Communications, UNRIC provides services to Andorra, Belgium, Cyprus, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, Malta, Monaco, Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, San Marino, Spain, Sweden and the United Kingdom, in addition to the Holy See and the European Union.

Ms. Aldis has more than 30 years of experience in communications in both the private sector and the United Nations. It includes managing multinational teams and leading strategic communications, as well as creative outreach to a variety of global audiences. She has extensive experience in building high-level partnerships with Member States, civil society, the private sector, academia, and international institutions — including those of the European Union.

Ms. Aldis has served as Chief of the Sales and Marketing Section in the Department of Global Communications and as Acting Deputy Director of the Outreach Division. She is also a member of the UN Publications Board.

Before joining the United Nations, Ms. Aldis held senior positions in various international publishing and marketing firms, including Hachette Livre in Paris, France, and Abrams Books in New York.

Ms. Aldis holds a Master of Business Administration from the Université Paris Dauphine and is fluent in English and French. (Source)

Gaziza Nurgalieva

Director of the National Academic Library of the Republic of Kazakhstan in Astana since 2022. 

Before moving to Astana, Ms. Nurgalieva directed the City Youth Libraries in Almaty and was a Director of the HR Department in the Almaty’s Chamber of Commerce. 

Ms Gaziza Nurgalieva is a professional librarian who graduated from the Kazakh State Women’s Pedagogical University with a degree in Library Science and Bibliography. In addition, she received a degree in State and Local Administration from Esil University in Astana. 

Ms Gaziza Nurgalieva is the recipient of numerous certificates, letters of gratitude, medals of excellence and awards, both in Kazakhstan and abroad.



Nurzhan Zholdybalinov

Deputy Director for information resources and youth policy at the National Academic Library of the Republic of Kazakhstan in Astana since 2017. 

Mr. Zholdybalinov has worked in the National Academic Library since 2007 in areas of electronic resources management and library automation and through various ranks from the specialist to the head of the ERM Services, and now he is the Deputy Director of the Library. 

Mr Nurzhan Zholdybalinov graduated from the Shakarim State University Of Semey with a degree in Computer Engineering. In addition, he received a library postgraduate degree from the Training Center for Postgraduate and Additional Professional Education of the Russian State Library. 

Mr. Zholdybalinov is the recipient of medals of excellence and awards.


Padraig Kirby

Librarian and International Projects Expert, Technological University of the Shannon, Midlands Midwest, Limerick, Ireland 

Padraig Kirby is a librarian by profession and holds a Master of Science in Information and Library Studies from Robert Gordon University in the United Kingdom. Padraig also has a Higher Diploma in Library and Information Studies from University College Dublin and a Bachelor of Arts (Hons) from the University of Limerick.

He is the coordinator of a number of major EU-funded Library projects in the Library and Information Science field. This has involved day-to-day coordination of international projects involving partners across many countries and regions of the world, focusing on areas such as library modernisation and reform, information literacy, 3D printing, intellectual property, and a range of other fields. 

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