Library Juice 4:30 Supplement - August 29, 2001

Cuba again??


  1. Editor's note
  2. On Kent's Latest Post (Aug. 2001)
  3. Cuba FAQ
  4. Book shipment to Cuban libraries
  5. Dale Vidmar's Cuba diary
  6. Howard Besser's trip to Cuba
  7. Literacy and Computer Literacy: The Cuban Experience
  8. Buying Cuban Books
  9. Queers in Cuba
  10. International Congress of Information, Cuba 2002


1. Editor's note:

I realize that Cuba has become a tiresome topic for many, due to Robert
Kent's ceaseless postings to every librarians' listsev known to man, and
PLG members' much less frequent but no less consisten rebuttals. PLG
members who have put on the boxing gloves on this issue have been led into
the unfortunate position of defending Cuba and the Castro government when
in private they are not completely uncritical or blindly supportive. I
have found PLG members personally to be realistic about Cuba and its
shortcomings, as well as unusually realistic about its successes and
appropriately skeptical of anti-Cuban propaganda. PLG members are also
drawn into the unfortunate position of making a large share of their public
statements on the Cuba issue, when in reality the issue is quite low in
importance to them as issues go.

Having said that, I will now go ahead and give you yet another Cuba
Supplement, because the material generated in this contest has been quite
interesting, and because as long as Robert Kent is publishing his
propaganda (and we are seeing his press releases repeated in the news media
as "journalism"), we need to remind the world that there are two sides to
every story. I know PLG members to be somewhere IN THE MIDDLE on the issue
of Cuba, if you take Castro's own views into account. It is not a case of
"both sides are loony." Supporting the revolution while raising issues with
Cuban officials is a far more effective way of working for positive change
in Cuba than simply attacking it, as Shawna Hellenius has learned first
hand and tells about in her article in this issue. And for those who can't
support the revolution, at least there is constructive engagement, rather
than attempting to overthrow a sovereign nation.

Another reason I am doing this Cuba issue is because Cuba is a subject of
interest to many librarians completely aside from the "Cuba debate." That
interest shouldn't be short-changed in an effort to move away from a
area of contention. This issues contains some nice things for the Cuba
enthusiast who wants to skim past the debate.

If you ARE interested in that disagreement and its history, you might want
to check out previous "Cuba" issues. (There is material relating to Cuba
outside the debate in these supplements alongside the polemical material.)

LJ 4:9 Supp., March 14, 2001

LJ 3:38 Supp., October 4, 2000

LJ 3:34 Supp., September 6, 2000

LJ 3:25 Supp., June 28, 2000

LJ 3:4 Supp., January 26, 2000

LJ 2:36 Supp., September 15, 1999

Oh! Special note: the next issue of Progressive Librarian is going to be


2. On Kent's Latest Post (Aug. 2001)

[SRRTAC-L:6670] On Kent's Latest Post
Date: Wed, 22 Aug 2001 16:51:33 -0400
To: SRRT Action Council <srrtac-l[at]>

I read with interest Robert Kent's latest post "Librarian in Hiding,
Library Besieged." I know how important it must be for Kent and his socalled
"librarians" to have a press release on the eve of the IFLA
meeting, where Cuba is being discussed. But Mr. Kent has outdone himself
in mangling the truth in order to discredit Cuba.

Let's cut to the chase.


Bruzon Avila, according to the U.S. Resource Information Center
htm) is the president of the Movimiento 24 de Febrero -- the same name as
his "library" and has been involved with this group since 1996. He is not
now --nor has he ever been -- a "librarian," a "video librarian," much
less a "children's librarian."

The MOVIMIENTO 24 DE FEBRERO, according to the same web document, "was
named to commemorate the date in 1996 when Cuban fighter jets shot down
two small civil aircraft flown by members of Hermanos al Rescate,
Brothers to the REscue, a Florida-based organization of anti-Castro
Cuban exiles..."

While Bruzon Avila, a political operative, is touted by Kent as a "librarian,"
Eliades Acosta, the REAL librarian Director of the Jose Marti National
Library of Cuba, is simply described as a "spokesperson for the Cuban
Government." What kind of nonsense is this?

The claim that Bruzon AVila is in trouble because he showed "Hercules"
is patently absurd. American movies are shown all the time in Cuba. But
if you read the press release carefully, you will see that not only has Bruzon
Avila NOT been arrested, but he is "believed to be in hiding" as the police
"reportedly seek" his arrest. "According to" Cubanet, the police have been
"trying to find and arrest" Bruzon Avila since August 14, and they have
"reportedly" surrounded his house.

Reported by whom? Jose Antonio Fornaris, the "news" reporter cited in the
press release, who--far from being an objective journalist -- is himself the
president of another counter-revolutionary political group/party, the
Frente de Unidad Nacional? By Cubanet -- that questionable source of
"news," funded by USAID and "anonymous" donors, that is the mouthpiece of
the right-wing Cuban elements in Florida? In fact, Cubanet is the ONLY
source of the report. Or perhaps the "Friends" are the source, since
their signed press release -- which cites Cuba as ITS source -- IS the
verbatim English version of the Cubanet report? It goes round and round and
we're supposed to believe this? This is an insult to librarians' intelligence.

But IFLA is meeting this week and the FCL must have something else -- no
matter how misleading, no matter how baseless -- to report, so that Mr. Kent
is not repeating his same old tired charges once again. His "work" is a
dishonest and cynical use of the cause of intellectual freedom for a
right-wing political agenda and disinformation campaign.

Ann Sparanese
Englewood, New Jersey

3. Cuba FAQ

"Presented here is a progressive view of important issues concerning Cuba.
I have drawn on a number of authoritative sources to answer questions that
often come up in debates. Sources include books, the international news
media and official web sites. (See What's New?)"

(Among other things, this site claims the existence of democratic elections
in Cuba.)

4. Book shipment to Cuban libraries

[ALAWORLD:495] Looking For Materials to Ship to Cuban Libraries
Date: Mon, 16 Jul 2001 16:32:57 -0500
From: "Michael Dowling" <mdowling[at]>
To: ALA International Relations Round Table <alaworld[at]>

Cuban Libraries and Archives could use your help. Current books and
journals are in short supply as is copy paper, pens and materials for
repairing books. You can help.

There is a licensed shipment of materials for Cuban cultural institutions
that will leave the United States in late August. The cost of the shipment
to Cuba has already been obtained. What is needed is to fill the
container. Materials most needed are storage boxes and folders, book
cloth, book board, PVA, methyl cellulose, acid free paper for end sheets,
and Japanese paper for paper repair, small tools such a bone folders,
cutting knifes, glue brushes, scissors, self healing mats. (Larger
equipment can be considered.)

Books and journals about librarianship, information services, archives,
preservation, information management, library and information science and
other resources that could be of help in the preparation of librarians and
archivists would be especially appreciated and will go directly to the
University of Havana the only advanced degree program for librarians in

Books and publications edited by ALA, SLA, ASIS, ARM, AMA and other
specialized associations would also be a very good contribution.

Current materials (published within the past 4 years) on technology
science, or medicine would also be put to good use.

All of the above publications can be in English.

Children's books, young adult, or adult fiction in Spanish will go to
public libraries throughout Cuba to supplement their dated and worn

To participate please send via e-mail or fax an inventory of titles or
supplies you wish to contribute. You will be expected to pay shipping to
send the materials to the central warehouse in Baltimore. Upon receipt of
your list of donations you will be sent the address for shipping. The
donations must be received in Baltimore by August 24, 2001.

For more information please contact Jeanne Drewes, Assistant Director for
Access & Preservation, Michigan State University Libraries at
drewes[at] or fax 517 432 1010 or voice 517 432 7486


5. Dale Vidmar's Cuba diary

"The following account is a log of 14 days traveling through the western
portion of Cuba. I will detail some observations and thoughts that emerged
as a mosaic of my experiences of a country and a culture. But from the
outset, Cuba is a land where questions generally breed new questions.
Answers are burdened with complexities. To visit Cuba is to look at one's
own reflection and ask the same questions about freedom and access to
information. While we may have so much more freedom in this country, we may
ask what we have taken for granted. It is my hope that this account will
fill you with wonder and keep you asking - another question, and yet
another question."


6. Howard Besser's trip to Cuba

Those librarians just keep on going to Cuba and learning about the place

Here is another account of a Cuba trip by a library science professor,
Howard Besser:


7. Literacy and Computer Literacy: The Cuban Experience

A todos los que eran generoso con su tiempo y sus direccionamientos del
email cuando estaba en Cuba, y a los que han pedido:

Un informe bilingue, Alfabetizacion y computadorizacion: La experiencia

es ahora un sito de Web,

hasta luego,


- - - - - -

To those who were generous with their time and their email addresses when I
was in Cuba, and to those who have asked:

A bilingual report, Literacy and computer literacy: The Cuban experience

is now on the web at

until next time,



8. Buying Cuban Books

Cuban books?... Why not
Date: Mon, 08 Jan 2001 09:37:46 EST
From: Vicente Revilla <VXRBM[at]CUNYVM.CUNY.EDU>
To: REFORMA <reformanet[at]>
Reply to: reformanet[at]

Greetings to all,

A colleague here at CUNY has started a new life as a book distributor
of Cuban books by Cuban authors. Dr. Margarita Fazzolari founder
of JIRIBILLA BOOKS and FRIENDS will be pleased to hear from you
if you need a catalogue listing its publications. Her Phone number
is (212) 924-4839. Thanks,

Vicente Revilla

.. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. ..

Re: Cuban books at Libros Sin Fronteras
Date: Tue, 9 Jan 2001 01:20:38 EST
From: MIGUELSAN1[at]
To: reformanet[at]
Cc: idjr[at], fchase[at]

January 8, 2001


Just a follow up note re. "Cuban Books: Why Not." Why not indeed! Libros Sin
Fronteras offers a very wide selection of Cuban materials (adult and
children's books, videos and music) to public and university libraries
through either firm orders or approval plans/standing orders. We also include
important selected Cuban materials in our annotated 2001 Catalog, and have
them available on our website. More information is available by calling or

e-mail: info[at]
Toll free telephone #: 1-800-454-2767 (1-800-4-LIBROS)

Much thanks. I look forward to seeing many of you at ALA!

Michael Shapiro
Libros Sin Fronteras


by Shawna Hellenius



In the 1950's, being lesbian or gay in Cuba meant a
closeted life in the family and on the job. Cuba had a
strong patriarchal culture, with an emphasis on
marriage and family. Unemployment was high & had been
steadily increasing throughout the decade. For all
women, & especially for lesbians, there was continual
sexual harassment at work. Lesbians had to pretend to
have a boyfriend to avoid sexual harassment and abuse.
Gay men had to pretend to have a girlfriend in order
to advance on the job. Often, lesbians and gay men
would enter into "marriages of convenience."

The '50s was a period of severe sexual repression in
Canada and the US as well. This anti-homosexual
atmosphere was part of the effort to get women back
into the home after their wartime employment and part
of the anticommunist McCarthy campaign. So, homosexual
desire was often channeled into illegal and lucrative
offshore markets. Havana became a prime spot for the
creation of a homosexual underworld to serve US
organized crime and for the pleasure of foreign

About 200,000 gay men of every class, and straight
working-class men found employment in Havana as
entertainers, servants and prostitutes in the tourism
industry, which was controlled by the US Mafia with
the blessing of Cuba's dictator, Batista.

This commodification of gay desire in the Havana
underworld did not produce any toleration of gay
life-styles or spawn a "gay culture" in the larger
social arena. Attitudes in traditional workplaces and
within the family involved a combination of ridicule
and violence toward gay men. Lesbians were less
visible due to the overall repression of female
sexuality. They
were either ignored or made objects of ridicule.

Isolated from mainstream social life and afflicted
with guilt, lesbians and gays were used, shamed,
abused, and placed in positions of servitude and
prostitution. Such was gay Havana in its fabled avant
la guerre period.


The revolution of 1959 destroyed the Havana underworld
and initiated the development of a productive economy.
The profit motive was removed from homosexual
relations; the promoters and overlords of the Havana
underground fled, taking many of their gay
entertainers with them. The rich in Cuba moved to
Miami, also bringing their domestic help.

At the same time, the revolutionary leadership rallied
against the remnants of capitalism. Because of the
former commodification of homosexuality, gay behaviour
was mistaken by Communist Party leaders as merely a
"product of bourgeois decadence." And the goal of the
revolution was to eliminate any bourgeois influences.
This false ideology was supported by the Soviet Union,
with whom Cuba was establishing trade relations.

Life in Cuba changed for gays and lesbians. Some gays
who had been with the old underworld joined
counterrevolutionary activities or were blackmailed
into them by the CIA. Other gays and lesbians,
especially those from working-class backgrounds or
students, joined with the revolution. However, this
meant going into the closet - temporarily, they hoped.

For the progressive gays and lesbians, the revolution
responded to their needs. Very few lesbians left the
country while many gay men did. This is because the
fuller integration of women into Cuban society
increased the status and freedom enjoyed by lesbians
under the revolution. For all the gay men and few
lesbians who left, there were many more who chose to
stay. Their lives had constantly been improving. The
revolution might not yet speak to the gay or lesbian
in them, but it continued to address other vital

Within the first months of the revolution, the
American CIA launched a propaganda campaign
encouraging Cubans to emigrate. If enough Cubans left
the country, the US government believed, it would
undermine the credibility of socialist revolution.

This campaign was tailored to appeal to different
groups and make them feel threatened by the
Ironically enough, at this time of the McCarthy era,
the US was not legally allowing "sexually deviant"
immigrants into the country. But the US
opportunistically welcomed open gay Cubans with a
catch - they had to denounce the Cuban revolution in
order to enter the US.

The CIA also targeted gay artists with
counterrevolutionary propositions to persuade them to
defect, promising generous academic grants and
publishing contracts. For lesbians and gays who were
well integrated into the revolution, the CIA attempted
to blackmail them. For example, Carlos Alberto
Montaner, an anti-Castro writer, published two full
pages listing names of homosexuals inside Cuba in an
attempt to discredit them and to force them to

The '60s and '70s were already unsettled. The 1961 Bay
of Pigs invasion, systematic attacks from Florida
bases, and internal CIA-sponsored subversion created
an increase in military defense in Cuba. Biological
sabotage inflicted epidemics on crop harvests.
Realistic fears and dangers gave rise to paranoia in
Cuba and anyone who was "different" fell under

This growing paranoia, mixed with Stalinist influence
resulted in the establishment of UMAP camps (Military
Units for the Aid of Production) in 1965. Gay men were
among those drafted into the camps, while lesbians,
due to their comparative invisibility, were spared.
But two years later, following international and
national protest, the camps were closed. While
short-lived and denounced extensively within and
outside Cuba ever since their abolition, the camps
remain a dark episode in Cuban history. It is
important to note that these camps were work camps,
not comparable to Nazi concentration camps. People
were not tortured. Abusive camp commanders were
relieved of duty.

By the late '60s, Cuban attitude toward lesbians and
gays was developing in pace with the rest of the
world. Homosexuality became described as an illness to
be cured, and not a criminal activity to be condemned.
By the '70s, gays were no longer seen as "decadent"
remnants of capitalism, and homosexuality was no
longer seen as a problem but viewed as a form of
sexual behaviour requiring study.



By the mid-80s, Cuban gays felt much less intimidated.
They were now a visible part of street life in
downtown Havana. Gay men have freedom to have sex with
whomever they want. Families respect the privacy of
their personal life outside the home. The majority of
"known" gays are not hassled at work or in public.
Cubans, by custom, are polite and respect one
another's privacy.

There is now an increasing awareness and acceptance
among Cuban society as a whole of the fact that gays
are an inevitable fact of life. More gay spaces are
opening up: gay nights at bars and Playas del Este.
Semipublic gay parties are common. They are illegal
because they charge admission and sell black-market
liquor, but police usually turn a blind eye. As far as
the state goes, the fiestas have the full support of
the CDR, and neighbours are often appeased through the
offer of free admission.

Although the Islands interior provinces tend to be
more conservative toward gays, many gay-positive
spaces are opening. In Santa Clara, gay fiestas are
just as open as in Havana. Country fairs attract
out-of-town gays. The social & cultural centre,
located in the heart of the city, becomes transformed
into a gay club on the weekend. Its character is
obvious to all, and it has the full support of the
local government and the Party.

Identity checks are still common occurrences by
police, but they no longer go out of their way to
single out gays for harassment. As individuals, the
Cuban police are no more aggressively homophobic than
police are in Canada. Recently a law was abolished
that historically could jail lesbians and gays for
three months under the charge of creating a "public
scandal." But lesbians and gays still could face a
fine for acting affectionate in public.

Despite this, one thing does differentiate reaction
toward gays in Cuba from other countries: the
phenomenon of queer bashing does not exist.


Lesbian and gay subthemes are beginning to creep into
the arts. While in 1983, there was controversy over
showing an American lesbian & gay documentary Word Is
Out at the Havana Film Festival, by 1987 there were
several gay and lesbian films shown at the festival.
Fresa y chocolate (Strawberries and Chocolate) was
presented at the 1993 Film Festival and played to
packed houses from noon to midnight in Havana's major
cinema for over three months. About a gay intellectual
who falls in love with a straight party militant, it
broke new ground with its sympathetic portrayal of


In 1992 President Fidel Castro declared homosexuality
to be "a natural human tendency that must simply be

Homosexuality used to be a barrier to membership in
the communist party and the communist youth. The
official line on lesbians and gays used to be that
what people do with their personal sexual lives is
their own business. There was a type of don't ask,
don't tell policy in place. This was the situation
when I visited Cuba in 1997.

However, by April of 1998, our Canadian delegate to
the International Encounter of Solidarity Among Women
was told by ICAP officials that this policy had
changed. This information was confirmed by the
delegates gay friend, who is a leader in the
communist youth, but he cautioned that while lesbians
and gays can be members, they must still show
discretion. ICAP also asked us to seek support from
Canadian lesbians and gays for Cuba and discussed the
possibility of a tour of Cuban lesbians and gays to

The issue of lesbianism came up during the Women's
Conference as well, which shows how the Cuban
government has relaxed its prejudices. At the Karl
Marx theatre on the final day of the conference, a
group of lesbian socialists from Italy and Mexico
attempted organize a caucus on Lesbianism. They put up
a sign in the theatre lobby. Some Cuban guards took it
down stating that homosexuality was illegal in Cuba,
and the theatre is used for political issues, which
homosexuality is not. This happened twice. Then the
lesbians approached our delegation for assistance.

Our delegation leader spoke with a member of the
Federation of Cuban Women, who immediately confronted
and corrected the guard's actions. The signs went back
up with full support of the Federation of Cuban Women,
and the meeting was held among lesbian participants

At our meeting with the Central Committee of the Cuban
Communist Party, its Canadian liaison asked us
directly to explore ways to reach out to First
Nations, women, and lesbians and gays in Canada, and
to help bring them into the Cuba defense movement.
Finally, the entire conference was gripped by the
summary remarks, which focused on the need for the
international women's movement to show strong
solidarity with women of colour, aboriginal women,
poor women, and women of all sexualities.


In practice, women have been freed from a compulsory
mother role and economic dependence on their father or
husband. Thanks to improved access to contraceptives,
abortion, sexual knowledge, and medical care, womens
health and independence has greatly improved since the
pre-revolutionary days. Furthermore, Cuba has an
extensive system of daycare centers and boarding
schools that have increasingly freed mothers from
their homes. Divorce, too, has become much more
accessible to Cuban women. Men's economic domination
of women and women's forced confinement to maternal
and domestic roles came to an end through the
revolutionary process.

However, emphasis on the nuclear family remains a
problem. Carolina Ayerra, Federation of Cuban Women
member and editor of Mujeres Magazine, really signals
how advanced the women communists are on the gay
question. During the International Feminist Brigade
Solidarity Conference, she had this to say, "My
personal position is lesbians are more discriminated
against than gay men in general because they don't
bear children and this is hard because of the pressure
of the role of motherhood in Cuba. Lesbians have a
right not to have children, but those who don't are
hit the hardest socially."

Carolina and other Federation of Cuban Women members
went on to speak passionately about destroying
discrimination against homosexuals.


Everywhere in the world, AIDS had a dramatic effect on
tolerance for gays. But Cuba in unique because it has
publicized and educated about the disease, not as a
gay disease, but rather, as a sexually transmitted
disease regardless of specific sexual practice.

I want to tell you about the famous AIDS sanitarium
outside Havana known as El Coco. El Coco was an
opulent coconut plantation owned by a slave-owning
Batista supporter, who also happened to be a drag

El Coco is notorious in the international press
because when AIDS first broke out in Cuba among
soldiers who had fought in the Angola War for
independence against the South Africa Apartheid
regime, the Cuban military requisitioned El Coco and
quarantined sick Cuban soldiers there. While the North
American AIDS community condemned this action, Cuba at
the early and ignorant stages of the disease acted to
protect its population from becoming infected by an
epidemic of which no one knew its cause. When the
world learned its methods of communication, Cuba
rapidly changed its policy.

Today El Coco is known as the premiere world AIDS
treatment centre. Patients are free to come and go.
The facility emphasizes quality treatment and
education. Patients are encouraged to have their
partners live with them. HIV positive people are paid
their full wage when they get sick.

Cuba has the lowest HIV infection rate on the planet.
Out of a population of 11 million people there are
1750 people who are HIV positive. 1290 are men and 459
are women. 928 people are gay or bisexual. Since the
beginning of the epidemic, 625 have died. In contrast,
of the one million Cubans living in the U.S., over
30,000 are HIV positive and many have died.

The really awful aspect of AIDS in Cuba is that
because of the blockade, all of the new drugs we have
access to here, known as protease inhibitors, are not
available in Cuba because of the blockade. So life
expectancy for HIV positive people is greatly reduced.
The ugly blockade is cutting life short for people
with AIDS too.



The biggest problem facing Cuban queers is the absence
of an organized movement. However, on Mayday in 1994,
lesbians and gays marched openly for the first time,
and have each year ever since.

Queers for Cuba, a US group, is supported by ICAP and
the Federation of Cuban Women, but so far, no
independent Cuban gay and lesbian organization has
received recognition from the government.


Another thing hampering gay progress is the severe
housing shortage, which has come as a result of the
economic blockade. Lack of privacy is the biggest
constraint on the sexual and relational aspects of the
lives of most lesbians & gays. The majority of Cubans
live in cramped homes with their entire family.
However, some gay couples have managed to secure a
home together, and are often out to their entire


Cuba has not always had a positive position on
lesbians and gays but neither does any country. This
position is changing and that's what counts. Much of
this change comes directly from the Federation of
Cuban Women's leading role in defense of lesbians and
gays and international support from groups like queers
for Cuba.

I believe that the discrimination of lesbians, gays,
and other sexual minorities is akin to sexism and must
be eradicated, and I have said this on a number of
occasions while in Cuba. I have talked with lesbians
and gays, many were militant defenders of the
revolution who had no intention to smash the Cuban
state or leave Cuba. Their big concern was not being
able to be who they are and still fully contribute
their experience and skills to building the

I believe that the revolutionary sincerity of any
group or country can be measured by its attention and
programmatic thrust towards solving the problem of
oppression of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered
people, as well as that of women and people of colour.
On these fronts, Cuba goes continuously forward,
learning from its mistakes, and adjusting its course
in positive ways.



Information, knowledge and society.
Challenges of a new era

Havana International Conference Center
Cuba, April, 22 - 26, 2002

Dear colleagues:

The Institute for Scientific and Technological Information (IDICT) of the
Ministry of Science, Technology and Environment of the Republic of Cuba
welcomes the opportunity to invite you to attend the sessions of the
International Congress of Information Info 2002 from April 22- 26, 2002.
The Congress will be held under the motto "Information, knowledge and
society. Challenges of the new era" at Havana International Conference

In this opportunity, coinciding with this Congress, will also be
celebrated the 40 anniversary of the IDICT, occasion that makes this a
very significative Congress.

The International Fair-Exhibition ExpoInfo'2002 will session simultaneously
to the Congress.
English and Spanish would be the official languages of the Congress.
Your attendance which certainly would contribute with discussions will be
During your stay you will also be able to visit interesting places and
meet the hospitable Cuban people.

On Info Congresses

The seventh staging of the international congresses on information,
Info'2002 will be held under the motto
"Information, knowledge and society. Challenges of a new era."

Info congresses have been held on a continued and biannual basis since
1988. The 45th Congress and the Conference of the International Federation
for Information and Documentation (FID), was held in Cuba in 1990 and ever
since, these congresses have BEEN held in our country in 1993, 1995,1997,
and 1999.

A considerable attendance of specialists from Latin America and Spain has
been the main feature of these congresses , and this has made it possible
to exchange experiences, with a focus on information institutions,
university libraries and library and information science associations and

Senior executives and other specialists from international organizations and
institutions have participated in these congresses. Regional and
professional meetings have been held by those organizations and
institutions as part of the general program of the Congress.

.A fair-exhibition, known as ExpoInfo has also taken place together with
the Info Congress. Cuban and foreign organizations exhibit their information
products and services, softwares, databases and other applications as part
of the fair-exhibition.

For the first time in this century Info 2002 will gather information
specialists which will discuss on the new management issues faced by
organisations and the challenges posed by the new information and
communication technologies, the new managerial approaches and the
requirements to be met by information professionals and institutions at the
beginning of a new millennium.



The professional program includes lectures, round tables, seminars,
workshops, panels, as well as
presentation of open topics related to the congress topics.

The Organizing Committee is working hard on the final arrangement of the
above all these modalities.

Final names of the activities of the professional program would be gradually
determined as part of the procedures thereto.

Post-congress courses would be organized among participants. Those courses
will contribute to the widest
possible exchange among delegates.

Information and knowledgement: basis of a new society.


Technology for rich and for poor people. Huge contrasts in the information


Role of the information management within the business intelligence [OIE1]
and knowledgement management..

Service strategies of the information organizations and present needs and
demands of the organizations.

Physical and content description of electronic information resources.
Metadates and other options.

CIO?s activity within the organizations.


The role of information in the prevention and mitigation of natural


Academic seminar devoted to scientometrics[OIE2] and informetrics.


Information policies as a necessary condition for the creation of an
informatized society.

The role of the school libraries within the user?s preparation, towards the
new scenaries.

The new information technologies and its influence in the processes,
services and management of the information organizations, as well that
within the information management systems of the organizations.

From the individual cyberpower to the socio-cultural cyberpower - necessary
condition for a true and just informatization.


Information professionals labour marketplace. New challenges and

Information projects. A way for planning and financing.


Strategies and actions of the associations in the preparation and
development of competitive professionals.

Meeting of librarians and information specialists, Cuba - North America

The guarantee of the professional continuity; Meeting of library
sciences and information sciences students

Call for Open Topic Papers

The Scientific Commission of Info 2002 will decide upon the form of
presentation of papers submitted. It would nclude oral presentation or

Two categories of posters would be available:

Electronic format

Power point presentation (no more than 15 screens)

Traditional format

Presentation in paper or cardboard (82 x 120 cm)

Requirements for the presentation of open topics

The first page of each paper should include: Title, author, (name and
address of the institution represented,
phone, fax and Email, and a brief curriculum), speaker (name and address of
the institution represented), country.

Papers should be submitted in one original and one hard copy written in
paper (8,5" x 11"), double spaced pages,
with 30 lines and 2,5 cm margins on both sides. A copy in diskette
should be also available in Word or WordPerfect format for PCs.

Papers should not exceed 15 pages, including graphics, tables and annexes.

A summary of the paper not exceeding 300 words should be submitted.
Summaries should follow the above mentioned requirements and should be sent
to the Organizing Committee before January 15th 2002.

The Scientific Commission of the Congress will notify the authors on
acceptance of papers submitted and the form of presentation. This may does
not exclude the possibility of participation as delegates.

Papers must reach the Organizing Committee no later than February 15th, 2002
so as to include them in the Proceedings of the Congress, in compact disk,
that will be distributed to all participants. A letter with the name of
author, co-author or any other responsible for the presentation of the paper
during working sessions should attached to the paper.


All the rooms will be equipped with overhead projectors. In case another
equipment is needed for the presentation (computer, video, slides, etc.),
this should be reported to the Organizing Committee.

Exhibition ExpoInfo'2002

The Fair-Exhibition "ExpoInfo'2002" will be held simultaneously to
Info'2002. Companies, corporations, institutions and organizations in the
information market will have the opportunity to promote and sell their
products, services, equipments, publications and other items of interest for
information consumers.

ExpoInfo'2002 will session in the Grand Foyer of Havana's International
Conference Center from April 22nd - 26th, 2002.

The charge for the use of the indoor modular stand is US $130,00 m2 during
the exhibition and includes:

Stand location in the plan will be decided upon by the Organizing Committee
and according to receipt date of the applications.

Audiovisuals computers, furniture and international telecommunication
services are available for rent during the exhibition.

All information on charges, participation requirements, requirements for
goods delivery, customs regulations, etc., may be obtained directly from the
Organizing Committee and the Division of Fairs and Exhibitions of Havana's
International Conference Center.

For further information, contact:

Ania Ferrer Forcades
Dpto. Comercial del IDICT
Capitolio Nacional, A. 2019,
La Habana 10200, CubaTelf.:
537 626531, 603411,
ext 1174 , Fax 537 338237
Email : aferrer[at]

Violeta Rodr?guez Oramas
Fair Executive Officer
Havana International Conference
Phone: 537 284398, 226011 ext. 19
Fax 537 287996, 283470, 228382
Email: violeta[at]



Delegates $200,00

Speakers $160,00



Registration fees include:

Delegates , Speakers and Students

Registration fees covers participation in the opening and closing
ceremonies, scientific program,
pass, documentation, certificate of participation, welcome cocktail and CD
with the Congress

Only undergraduates will be considered as students. This should be
confirmed by an official letter
from their college and the student's card at the moment of registration.
Otherwise, they will have
to pay the established fee.

Accompanying persons

Participation in the opening and closing ceremonies, pass,
welcome cocktail, city tour and souvenir.

For further information and consult, please contact:

Lic. Nicol?s Garriga M?ndez
Presidente / President Info'2002 Organizing committee
IDICT, Apartado 2019, La Habana 10200, Cuba.
Telf.: (53 7) 626501, (53 7) 603411, ext. 1118,
FAX: (53 7) 338237
Correo electr?nico: info[at], garriga[at]

Lic. Antonio L. Ruano L?pez
Secretario / Secretary Info'2002 Organizing committee
IDICT, Apartado 2019, La Habana 10200, Cuba.
Telf.: (53 7) 635500, (53 7) 603411, ext. 1146,
FAX: (53 7) 338237
Correo electr?nico: info[at], tony[at]

MSc. Octavio P?rez Marrero
Organizador profesional de congresos /Professional Congress Organizer
Palacio de las Convenciones de La Habana
Apartado 16046, La Habana, Cuba.
Telf. (53 7) 28 7541 / 226011 / 19
Fax (53 7) 28 7996 / 283470 / 22 8582
Correo electr?nico: octavio[at]


Havana's International Conference Center is the leading company of the
congress industry in Cuba. It is an institution specialized in organizing,
promoting and holding events, with more than 21 years of experience in this
field. It has 11 rooms with different accommodations and provides
translation and interpretation services, room officer, word processing, and
printing office, among other services. Its exhibition hall, PABEXPO,
features 5 air-conditioned interconnected halls and provides services of
Professional Organization of Fairs and Exhibitions and their setting up.
The Complex also has a 4 star hotel, PALCO, created to meet professionals'
and specialists' needs attending events and fairs, and "El Bucan", "Rancho
Palco" and "El Palenque" restaurants.

Club Habana opened its doors in 1998 as part of the Conference Center. This
is a place to practice land and water sports and to enjoy social activities
for diplomats, executive and businessmen in general. Moreover, SERVIMPORT,
an import agency, guarantees professionalism, reliability and fast
procedures in managing imports and exports.


Palco Hotel, venue of our events, is linked with the Conference Center
through a shopping gallery. It was basically designed to meet the needs of
our congress people and businessmen visiting Cuba. It has 178 rooms with
TV, international communication services, safe-deposit box and mini-bar.
The Hotel also features sauna, massage, nursery services, good evening
letter, laundry services, business center, executive and meeting halls,
lobby-bar, swimming pool, buffet restaurant, grill, tourism desk and a
rent-a-car service.


Cubatur, Congresses
Mr. Ernesto Santos
Tel: (537) 33 4121/33 4353
Fax: (537) 33 3104
E-mail: santo[at]

How to travel to Cuba


Participants from countries where there are not representative agencies of
the Havana's International Conference Center require a visa for Cuba, so
they should apply for one.

You can apply for your visa at the Cuban Consulates in your home country.
If there is no Cuban Embassy or Consulate in the countries, participants are
advised to send the Organizing Committee a photocopy of their visas with the
following data: place and date of birth, nationality, passport number, date
and place of issue.

General Information

Havana was founded in 1519. Its historical center and its system of
colonial fortresses were declared world heritage sites by UNESCO
Religion: Freedom of religion, Catholicism prevailing
Population: Nearly 2.000 000
Currency: US/Cuban Peso/Convertible Currency
Climate: Tropical: raining season from May through October and a dry season
from November through April.
Average Temperature: 25? C.
Official Language: Spanish.
Accepted Credit Cards: VISA, BANAMEX INT., CABAL, MASTER, BFI (the Head
House must not be American).
Voltage: 110v
Currency Exchange and Traveler's Checks: BFO, BICSA, Banco Metropolitano


Nombre y apellidos/ Name and surname:
Profesi?n / Profession
Especialidad / Speciality
Instituci?n/ Institution
Direcci?n:/ Address
Ciudad:/ City
Pa?s / Country
Apartado postal:/ P.O. Box
C?digo:/ Zip Code
Tel?fono:/ Phone
Correo Electr?nico:/ E mail


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