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null GlobeTheoLib develops plans for the future

Plans for the strategic development of the Global Digital Library on Theology and Ecumenism (GlobeTheoLib) were the main focus of the annual meeting in Geneva of the GlobeTheoLib Consortium Committee made up of the project's main partners.

GlobeTheoLib was launched in September 2011 as a joint project between and the World Council of Churches and a Consortium of more than 20 regional and international ecumenical organizations supporting the project. These include associations of theological libraries and seminaries, mission organizations, foundations, Regional Ecumenical Organizations and Christian World Communions.

The first phase of the project lasts from 2011 to the end of 2013. At its meeting on 20-21 September, the Consortium Committee drew up plans for the second phase of GlobeTheoLib to run from 2014 to 2016. A major focus in this period should be the strengthening of regional hubs and platforms, to increase visibility of and the genuine sharing of theological production in the various world regions.

In his report, GlobeTheoLib Programme Executive Stephen Brown noted that GlobeTheoLib now has more than 25'000 registered participants from all regions of the world with a clear majority from the global South. Altogether GlobeTheoLib participants represent almost 30 percent of the total number of registered participants using the platform.

With 750,000 documents available online in GlobeTheoLib, there are also synergies with the GlobeEthicsLib digital library especially in the areas of interreligious dialogue and religious ethics, Brown said.

GlobeTheoLib library assistant Mélisande Lorke has developed a new home page for the online library, and is coordinating the Global Ecumenical Theological Institute (GETI). This is a major event for about 150 younger advanced theology students from all regions of the world and all Christian denominational traditions to take place in Korea in October/November 2013 in conjunction with the 10th assembly of the World Council of Churches, and for which GlobeTheoLib is providing online support.

Deivit Montealegre, GlobeTheoLib Latin American library assistant based in Buenos Aires, Argentina, reported that a small team in the region had uploaded more than 3000 articles in Spanish and Portuguese. A further priority in Latin America is the need to develop strategies for online theological education, and the role GlobeTheoLib can play in this, he said.

During the meeting, Dietrich Werner, the coordinator of the Ecumenical Theological Education programme of the WCC, presented the main findings of a Global Survey on Theological Education, undertaken by ETE and other institutions.

The results of the survey urge churches to put emphasis on Christian leadership formation, collaboration in theological education, support for scholarship programmes and development of capacity-building for theology students. The report of the survey can be found on the GlobeTheoLib website.