This announcement was posted to the Dig_Ref list yesterday:

Think globally… Ask locally. Building national and international co-operative virtual reference networks.

If you will be attending the IFLA general conference in Oslo, Norway (August 14-18, 2005), we invite you to participate in a discussion with your colleagues around the world as we explore the possibilities for the next level of international co-operation, across and between national virtual reference services. Coordinators of national, state-wide and regional virtual reference services from Denmark, Russia, Scotland, Switzerland, the United States and other countries will be meeting to share information about their respective services. This will be an opportunity to network and to discuss national and international collaborative possibilities, as well as to discover ways in which we can work together to better serve all our users.

Cool, international reference collaboratives! Bailey-Hainer (2005) suggests that virtual reference is cost-effective only at the statewide scale; it may not work for individual services going it alone. In a previous post I wondered, what about at a nationwide level? Well, I hope that this is the beginning of a beautiful research agenda.