UVODNIK tencijalnim kupcima, nego je ugrađena u samu njegovu jezgru. Implementacija COBISS-a uvijek je plod “kooperativnosti”, pa stoga nije odlučna platežna sposobnost “kupca”, već htijenje i spremnost da zajedno izgradimo informacijsku mrežu koja je konkurentna u odnosu na najrazvijenije. To se ne može postići bez multikulturalnog dijaloga pa zato slobodno mogu kazati da je COBISS simbol međusobnog poštivanja i po- vezivanja u regiji, koju su na žalost zadesile strašne nedaće, no koja je istovremeno bila sposobna smoći sna- ge za novi razvojni polet. Konferencije COBISS uvijek su bile razgovor o “primjerima dobre prakse” i želja nam je da tako bude i na konferenciji COBISS 2007. Nove informacijske i komunikacijske tehnologije nude nam odlične mogućnosti stvaralačkog povezivanja, kakvih u historiji još nije bilo, i tko to ignoriše, u velikoj je zabludi. Tehnologija je samo jedan aspekt nove paradigme, dok drugi predstavlja organizaciona sposobnost, za koju je odlučan mul- tikulturalni dijalog. Ubijeđen sam da će diskusije učesnika konferencije COBISS 2007 to potvrditi i dati nov podsticaj razvoju mreže COBISS.Net da postane uzor regionalne saradnje biblioteka za čitavu Evropu. Dobro došli u Mariboru! Tomaž Seljak WELCOME TO COBISS 2007 This year marks the 16th time that IZUM will host a conference for a large family of librarians and informati- on experts from the countries of South-East Europe. Although Habakuk features the largest convention centre in this part of Slovenia, today it almost exceeds its capacity, which, in fact, is music to the organiser’s ears. The title of the conference “ COBISS – Supporting Intercultural Dialogue ” is closely connected with the deci- sion of the European Parliament and the Council to declare 2008 “European Year of Intercultural Dialogue”. This topic gives us an opportunity to draw a line under the hitherto COBISS conferences and establish that they all have had a joint objective of bringing together library systems in this culturally diverse region. Not for a moment have we forgotten the impact of cultural differences and the importance of respecting them as they add special charm to the part of Europe where COBISS has been asserting its identity over the past years. We have done our best and achieved a lot, and this gives us the right to be the first to speak about intercultural dialogue, the topic which will be much discussed by many in the future regardless of whether or not they have actually contributed to it. It goes without saying that COBISS is not an ordinary library information “product”. Its multiculturalism is much more than just a “cellophane wrap” to attract or please potential customers; it is built into its very core. The implementation of COBISS has always been the result of collaboration and, therefore, the “paying abi- lity” of customers is not a key issue. What matters is the willingness and readiness to jointly create an infor- mation network that would be able to compete even with the most developed ones. This cannot be achieved without intercultural dialogue and I can safely say that COBISS is a symbol of mutual respect and linking in the region, which despite severe and trying experience has had the ability to find the energy for new develop- ment. COBISS conferences have always been regarded as an example of good practice and we wish that COBISS 2007 will be no exception. New information and communication technologies that are now opening up for us provide excellent opportunities for creative linking; anyone who ignores them makes a big mistake. Techno- logy is only one part of a new paradigm, the other is organisational capability in which intercultural dialogue is of vital importance. I trust that discussions among conference participants will prove that and they will give fresh impetus to COBISS.NET network to further evolve and become a model of regional interlibrary colla- boration for Europe. I look forward to welcoming you to Maribor. Tomaž Seljak, M.Sc .