OBERHACHING, Germany, September 28, 2015. The North Rhine-Westphalian Library Service Centre (hbz), a library consortium in Germany's most populous state, has signed an agreement with OCLC to add 19 million bibliographic records from the consortium to WorldCat, making these valuable collections more visible and accessible to scholars around the world.
Based in Cologne, hbz works as a central development and service organization for university, college and specialized libraries, as well as data processing centers in the state of North Rhine-Westphalia. With the addition of hbz records, the collections of all six German library consortia regions and the German National Library will be included in WorldCat, the world's largest online database of items held in libraries.
"By participating in WorldCat, we support our member libraries who want to position their collections firmly in the context of the Web to achieve greater visibility," said Dr. Silke Schomburg, Director of hbz. "The goal is to direct the potential users who search primarily or exclusively through the world's most popular search engines to the library holdings and resources. This agreement to participate in WorldCat will contribute to this."
WorldCat is a set of databases that together comprise the most comprehensive global network of data about library collections and services. WorldCat data is contributed, maintained and shared by libraries around the world. It is managed and enhanced by OCLC. The data supports a range of OCLC and partner services, driving efficiency in library management, improving discovery of library collections and increasing the visibility of libraries on the Web.
"WorldCat is the largest network of library information in the world," said Eric van Lubeek, OCLC Vice President, Managing Director, EMEA and Asia Pacific. "We welcome the addition of these records representing the collections of hbz libraries. With this agreement, WorldCat will include records representing valuable collections of libraries throughout Germany."
The North-Rhine Westphalian Library Service Centre hbz (Hochschulbibliothekszentrum des Landes Nordrhein-Westfalen) is known as a supplier for knowledge, information and innovation in librarianship and information technology. As a regional centre for technical development and services the hbz is a reliable partner and the principal supporter of libraries in and beyond North-Rhine Westphalia for implementing efficient information services.
The hbz offers a variety of products and services the most important being the hbz-Union Catalogue, DigiBib (The Digital Library), Electronic Inter-Library Loan (ILL), regional and national consortia management of electronic content, German and Austrian Library Statistics, Digital Peer Publishing (DiPP), Digitization as well as Linked Open Data and long-term preservation services.
OCLC is a nonprofit global library cooperative providing shared technology services, original research and community programs so that libraries can better fuel learning, research and innovation. Through OCLC, member libraries cooperatively produce and maintain WorldCat, the most comprehensive global network of data about library collections and services. Libraries gain efficiencies through OCLC's WorldShare, a complete set of library management applications and services built on an open, cloud-based platform. It is through collaboration and sharing of the world's collected knowledge that libraries can help people find answers they need to solve problems. Together as OCLC, member libraries, staff and partners make breakthroughs possible.