LEIDEN, Netherlands, May 5, 2015. Red de Lectura Pública de Euskadi (Public Reading Network of Euskadi) has announced that its union catalog, which represents the collections of more than 240 municipal libraries in the Basque Country of Spain, will be added to WorldCat in 2015. The Network will add more than 650,000 records to WorldCat, including approximately 55,000 Basque titles.
The Network, which serves over 2 million people, is the first public library group in Spain to make its collections globally accessible through WorldCat, the most comprehensive global network of data about library collections and services. Libraries around the world contribute, maintain and share WorldCat data that is managed and enhanced by OCLC. WorldCat data supports a range of services, driving efficiency in library management, improving discovery of library collections and increasing visibility of libraries and their collections on the Web.
The Public Reading Network of Euskadi has, at the heart of its mission, the promotion of reading and ongoing usage of the Basque language (Euskera), keeping the culture of the region alive. Euskera is the only language in Western Europe that is not demonstrably related to any other, making it unique as a "language isolate." It is spoken by over 600,000 people and has enjoyed a resurgence in recent decades. When these records are added to WorldCat, the collections of Basque works that were previously difficult to locate will now be more accessible to libraries around the world.
"Loading the Network's collections into WorldCat is a major step in our strategy of increasing cooperation and visibility on the Web of our important collections," said Francisca Pulgar Vernalte, Head of Service for the Bibliotecas del Gobierno Vasco, which is part of the Public Reading Network of Euskadi. "As a famous Basque author, Bernard Etxepare, once said, ‘Heuscara, ialgui adi mundara!' which means ‘Basque, go out into the world!' Our partnership with OCLC helps to make that sentiment a reality."
"WorldCat represents the largest network of library data in the world," said Eric van Lubeek, Vice President, Managing Director, OCLC EMEA and Asia Pacific. "Having languages like Basque represented in WorldCat is vital for sharing regional culture and heritage with a global audience."
Libraries in 170 countries and territories have contributed holdings in WorldCat. There are more than 485 languages and dialects represented in the database. More about WorldCat is on the Web.
Founded in 1967, OCLC is a nonprofit, membership, computer library service and research organization dedicated to the public purposes of furthering access to the world's information and reducing library costs. More than 74,000 libraries in 170 countries have used OCLC services to locate, acquire, catalog, lend, preserve and manage library materials. Researchers, students, faculty, scholars, professional librarians and other information seekers use OCLC services to obtain bibliographic, abstract and full-text information when and where they need it. OCLC and its member libraries cooperatively produce and maintain WorldCat, the world's largest online database for discovery of library resources. Search WorldCat.org on the Web. For more information, visit the OCLC website.