Libraries and Information Science (Nclis), United States National Commission On
The membership of the commission consists of the Librarian of Congress and fourteen other members who serve five-year terms. Five members of the commission are required to be professional librarians or information science specialists. Other members can be non-professionals, but must have distinguished themselves as having a special dedication to literacy causes, library technology, or information services. Several well-known authors and celebrity champions of literacy have served on the commission. Three committee members are designated to oversee policy addressing information access and literacy issues of the handicapped, elderly, and children. All members are appointed to the position by the President, and approved by the legislature.
During the 1990s, the commission focused on formulating policies and guidelines for the use of technology in library systems. The advent of the internet created new opportunities for the creation of electronic information storage and dissemination. As individual libraries, including the Library of Congress, converted their own directory systems from paper to electronic indices, NCLIS issued advisory guidelines addressing equal access concerns for the vision and hearing impaired. Internet access and electronic databases of government information within library systems was the focus of a 1995 committee study, with special attention paid to numerous security issues. The committee endeavors to make public-domain government information readily available through the library system, but also advises on security measures to adequately curate more sensitive information.
In 2001, the NCLIS undertook a study of the distribution and dissemination of government archives and information in national, state, local, and school library systems. After the September 11 terrorist attacks, the NCLIS drafted a policy on the availability and dissemination of terrorism readiness and prevention information.
█ FURTHER READING:
United States National Commission on Libraries and Information Science. < http://www.nclis.gov/about/about.cfm >(1 December 2002).