Partnerships – French-Speaking World

The Réseau Francophone Numérique (RFN – Francophone Digital Network)

Logo du Réseau Francophone Numérique

The Francophone Digital Network (RFN) is an association that brings together the French-speaking world’s most significant documentary institutions.

The RFN came into being in 2006, born of the shared determination of the Presidents of the Bibliothèque nationale de France (BnF – National Library of France) and the Bibliothèque et Archives nationales du Québec (BAnQ – National Library and Archives of Quebec); it was soon joined by the national libraries of Belgium, Canada, Luxembourg and Switzerland, and then by the Bibliotheca Alexandrina (Egypt) and the Bibliothèque Nationale du Royaume du Maroc (BNRM – National Library of the Kingdom of Morocco).

The network currently comprises 26 institutions representing 19 countries, and registers new memberships every year. Through unique patrimonial collections, many of them still little-known and sometimes threatened with deterioration, it bears witness to the intensive cultural exchanges made possible by a shared French language.

Its action is based on three objectives and five principles.

Three objectives:

  • To reflect the diversity of Northern and Southern countries’ Francophone sources in cyberspace, over time and in the current context;
  • To help member countries preserve and reconstitute the heritages they are responsible for;
  • To bring about conditions favouring the emergence of coherent shared digitisation programmes.

Five principles:

  • Pluralism, with no exclusiveness in the search engine as regards means of access to digital collections;
  • Free of charge, with guaranteed free access to out-of-copyright documents;
  • Public domain, with maintenance of digital files in the public domain and compliance with member countries’ national legislation;
  • Permanence, with guaranteed long-term conservation;
  • Promotion of the French language and all forms of expression in French.

On the occasion of its General Assembly held in Brussels on 26 April 2017, the RFN was established as an international non-profit association under Belgian law, and opened its digital library to the public.

The International Organisation of La Francophonie has supported the RFN since its beginnings.

Monday, June 12, 2017