National Library of France
The initial project was to establish an encyclopedic heritage library. The collections development policy was based on corpora of authors; collections of periodicals; editorial series (Mémoires de la Révolution française, Archives de la linguistique française, Collection des Grands écrivains de la France, Bibliothèque Elzévirienne, etc.); bibliographical, encyclopedic, and linguistic tools; and thematic corpora via the creation of themed multimedia reports (Voyages en France, Sociétés savantes, Anthologie des collections, etc.). BnF aims to meet this challenge with the support of all its partners from the library network. To this end, it set out a digital library development charter in 2004 and increased the resources allocated to the digital library.
The Gallica Digital Library Charter takes into account the existence of digital corpora created by agreed partner libraries, or those intending to become agreed partners, for the development of its own digital collections.
For the past few years, BnF has therefore been establishing partnerships with external institutions in the area of digitization, drawing on its network. With the agreement of its supervisory authority, it has decided to step up its activities in the area of shared digitization: it contributes 50% of the funding for digitization and provides its partners with technical and scientific support.
The first of these programs, which relates to legal science (BnF’s Law, Economics and Politics Department), was launched in May 2008 in close partnership with the Cujas library, which jointly manages the program.
A concerted digitization program in art history is under investigation (BnF’s Art and Literature Department, together with special collections departments; jointly managed with the National Art History Institute (Institut national de l’histoire de l’art)).
Other programs will be launched over the next few years, particularly in the areas of heritage literature for young people (Languages, Literature and Art Department) and history, with three sub-programs: the First World War, Colonial History, and Social And Labor History (Philosophy, History and Humanities Department; BnF’s Law, Economics and Politics Department, particularly for the press; and BnF’s Science and Technology Department for the “Areas and Territories of the French Colonial Empire” and “Colonial Healthcare and Medicine” aspects).
Concerted digitization in legal scienceDigital partnerships are being developed with the libraries of senior branches of the civil service, and particularly with parliamentary libraries:
Documentation française also became a BnF agreed partner in 2008, and its recent merger with the Direction du Journal Officiel will open the way to develop plans to digitize the Journal Officiel.
La Bibliothèque de l’Assemblée nationale et la BnF s’engagent sur le chemin de la coopération Communiqué de presse [fichier .pdf – 52 Ko – 22/12/09 – 1 p.]
OAI-PMH interoperability guideBnF provides an OAI-PMH interoperability guide to enable libraries to have their digital documents referenced within Gallica.
Guide d’interopérabilité OAI-PMH : pour un référencement des documents numériques dans Gallica [fichier .pdf – 200 Ko – 10/07/15 – 14 p.]
In the context of the National Books Council (Conseil National du Livre), BnF is leading one of the subgroups tasked with drawing up a “digital framework for libraries” (Schéma numérique pour les Bibliothèques). This “Digitization programs: inventory and consultation” group is aimed at creating the conditions for detailed programming of digitization initiatives, so as to avoid the risk of public resources being scattered and documentary redundancy occurring. Much of the methodology used to run topic-based digitization programs (in legal science, art history, etc.) has been recycled in putting together the recommendations of this working group.
Digitization activities represent the core of any digitization project, and not its final end goal. From a cooperative perspective, the benefits of such a project lie in the prior selection of documents to be digitized, as well as in various subsequent promotional activities (online publication, cross-referencing of digital collections via the OAI-PMH protocol, editorial support, writing of articles, distribution to researchers, etc.). For any digital project, the adoption of a concerted approach reduces the amount of effort needed to achieve visibility, drive use, and share resources.
Monday, November 30, 2015