Newsletter No 20 (August 1998)

ISSN 0966-999X No. 20 August 1998




I hope I can produce a Newsletter up to the previous standards left by Oliver. I’m looking forward to receiving further contributions for the next Newsletter and hopefully meeting you all at the next COSEELIS conference.

Please make a note of my address to put in a safe place, ready to send me those interesting articles!

Nicola Deal
The British Library
Slavonic Acquisitions
Boston Spa
West Yorkshire
LS23 7BQ

Tel: 01937 546214
Fax: 01937 546333

John Screen’s Retirement

Dr John Screen, one of the longest serving members of the COSEELIS Committee, retired after 26 years as Librarian of the School of Slavonic and East European Studies at the end of April. His association with COSEELIS goes back to the early 1970s and its previous incarnations as SEEG and then ACOSEEM; he chaired the committee from 1975 to 1980 and also served as editor of this newsletter and of SOLANUS (1975 to 1980) remaining an active member of the committee until his retirement, always appreciating the benefits of national cooperation even when local pressures may have argued towards competition.

Appointed in 1972, he put great effort into modernising SSEES Library, with early achievements being the introduction of Library of Congress Subject Headings, the election of the Library as a member of SCONUL in 1974, and the gradual consolidation of the Library into a single physical unit more able to cope with growing student members. In addition to membership of the COSEELIS Committee he served on a number of other national bodies throughout his career, including the Coordinating Council of Area Studies and the SCONUL Advisory Committee on Orientalist Materials; also playing an active part in the training of future librarians through his work on the University of London’s Board of Library, Archive and Information Studies.

The rarer collections of SSEES Library became better known to the academic community through Dr Screen’s bibliographical work, in particular the articles on Charles Barton’s Hungarian books at the School of Slavonic and East European Studies, with John Freeman (Solanus, 17, 1982), Church Slavonic and Russian books, 1552-1800, in the Library of the School of Slavonic and East European Studies, with Professor C L Drage (Slavonic and East European Review, Vol 57 no 3, July 1979), and Guide to reference material in the library of Finland, London SSEES, 1977. Later the considerable time and effort that went into editing the British entries to the European Bibliography of Slavonic and East European Studies was much appreciated by COSEELIS members.

Now that he has retired Dr Screen is devoting his time to his primary academic interest in Finnish military history, a field in which he is an internationally renowned scholar and for which he has received a number of honours, including the White Rose of Finland, Knight First Class, for services to Finnish historical scholarship. Although colleagues in SSEES and elsewhere will miss his always well-considered professional advice we hope to continue seeing him as a reader for many years to come.

Libtech International moves to Olympia

Libtech International was created in 1985 as a training event for internal library staff for the now University of Hertfordshire. It blossomed in 1990 when it was decided to introduce meetings alongside the exhibition for special interest groups of the library and information professions, thus has been managed by the university staff for some time.

The university and one of Britain’s largest exhibition companies, Reed Exhibitions UK, have reached an agreement for taking this exhibition of technology for Libraries, to London. This will now be managed by them and will run alongside the London International Bookfair at Olympia, London, on 28-30 March 1999, therefore their exhibition will not be held at the university this September. At the beginning of May, the Vice Chancellor of the University, Professor Neil Buxton, said that they are delighted that Libtech will be staged in London at an internationally renowned exhibition venue. He also indicated that the University felt some sadness, as it had been successfully held on their Hatfield campus for the past 13 years.

Since the exhibition is growing rapidly and attracting exhibitors and visitors globally, the University and Reed Exhibition UK hope that relocating it to run alongside the London Book Fair will ensure it’s development and popularity through into the millennium. They hope that it will draw more and more librarians and information managers to come and either participate or view the electronic information sources.

Neil Wood of Reed Exhibitions UK hopes that partnering this will attract a wider spectrum of delegates and Press to Olympia during the event.

If you require any further information try the following web page:

‘Libtech on the Web’ at

Information supplied by Mr Bill Forster, University of Hertfordshire. Tel: 01707 284665.

Forthcoming IGLA (International Group of the Library Association)

As most of you may know the IGLA Conference will take place in Bristol on 4 6 September 1998 and will include several sessions relating to Eastern and Central Europe.

The Conference is entitled ‘Disaster and After: the Practicalities of Information Service in Times of War and other Catastrophes’ and the following sessions are likely to be interesting to all COSEELIS members.

THE POLISH FLOODS OF 1997 – Bozena MICHALSKA and Andrzej NOWAKOWSKI (Torun and Poznan Universities, Poland)




For more information about the Conference, including costs, can be found on the IGLA Home Page –

Hopefully there will be a full report in the next newsletter for those who will miss out on this.

Information supplied by Louise Cooke, University of Buckinghamshire.

Update in ICCEES VI World Congress in Tampere, Finland 29 July-3 August 2000 and Librarians’ Pre-Conference in Tallinn, Estonia 26-29 July 2000

As mentioned in COSEELIS Newsletter No 19, the 6th World Congress of the International Council for Central and Eastern European Studies will take place in Tampere, Finland in the summer of 2000. The traditional pre-conference for librarians, known as the International Slavic Librarians’ Conference, will be held at the National Library of Estonia, Tallinn. This latter conference will treat issues connected with the Slavic and East European collections of libraries. The proposed general topic of the Conference is LIBRARIES IN OPEN SOCIETY, to be divided into two major sub-topics: “Collection Development” and “Electronic Information Delivery”, the themes are not final, all suggestions are welcome until 1 October 1998. The sessions will be extended by roundtable discussions. The Conference will be accompanied by exhibitions, presentations and other related events. Visits to other Estonian libraries will be arranged. Accompanying persons will be provided with a special programme.

Registration fees for participants and accompanying persons will be $50 US and $25 US respectively. Current hotel prices: 580 EEK ($42) for a single room and 820 EEK ($59) for a double room in a **hotel: 1152 EEK ($83) for a single room and 1344 EEK ($96) for a double room in a ***hotel. Hotel prices are subject to change by the summer of 2000. After the conference a ferry/bus

Anu Nuut (email: – Tel: 372-6307 126)
Marie Karusaar (email: – Tel: 372-6307 503)
National Library of Estonia
Tõnismägi 2
EE0100 Tallinn

Fax: 372-6311 410

Additional information on the Conference venue as well as updates of conference details can be found at the National Library of Estonia’s web site:

and the ICCEES organising committee’s web site is at:

Janet has volunteered to become the UK Coordinator for this conference therefore if you require any further information or have any questions you would like Janet to raise then please do not hesitate to contact her.

Janet Zmroczek
Slavonic Section
Floor 2
96 Euston Road
St Pancras

Tel: 0171 412 7586

A Report on the Annual Meeting of the Editors of the European Bibliography of Slavic and East European Studies

The 15th annual meeting was held in Paris on 8-9 June 1998, where they were pleased to welcome a new contributor for Belgium – Wim Coudenys, who is an academic with special interest in émigré Russian literature. Also present was Aaron Trehub from ABSEES.

For several years the Editors have been working towards making EBSEES available online. AT LAST there is a working version of EBSEES available on a European server, it is in Grenoble and can be accessed at:

Select Access to CCO thematic catalogue and then Catalogs in non-Latin alphabets. To get the full range of special characters you will need to download the appropriate fonts the first time you use it. The data available at the moment is just for 1992 but 1991 and 1993 will be mounted shortly. The printed version of EBSEES is still heavily in arrears; 1993 came out in Spring, but 1994 will hopefully be processed more quickly, as the French editors will no longer be spending their time on the pilot online version.

The main issue is that they want to try and get an up to date version as quickly as possible so that it will be an advantage to use their site.

Their meeting was highly productive and they hope that all of us will try their new online site.

Information supplied by Jenny Brine.

Please find attached to this newsletter a leaflet about sophia European Humanities Database. This is being offered to all COSEELIS members at a discounted price of 40% off. Anyone who is willing to try this then let me know so I can include the findings in the next Newsletter.

In the next Newsletter there will be a full report on the Crimea 1998 Conference from Mr Norman Briggs. Also details of some of the libraries he visited in Volonek.

If you have any comments to make about the Newsletter then please do not hesitate to contact me and if there are any pieces of information you wish to include in the next COSEELIS Newsletter send them to me whenever possible.

© COSEELIS. Views expressed in this Newsletter are not necessarily those of COSEELIS. Special thanks to a colleague of mine, Martin Beaumont who helped me compile this Newsletter when my work was wiped off the system.

Editor: Nicola Deal, Slavonic Acquisitions, The British Library, Boston Spa, Wetherby, LS23 7BQ, Tel: (01937) 546214, Fax: (01937) 546333, email: