DUBLIN, Ohio, October 22, 2008. OCLC and Bibliothèque nationale de France have signed a letter of intent to work cooperatively to add records from the French national library to OCLC’s WorldCat, the world’s largest online resource for finding information in libraries.
Bibliothèque nationale de France and OCLC signed the document during the IFLA World Library and Information Congress: 74th IFLA General Conference and Council in Québec, Canada. Once an agreement is finalized, OCLC anticipates processing an estimated 13.2 million bibliographic records from Bibliothèque nationale de France. Once records are added to WorldCat, they will be more visible and accessible to Web users worldwide.
"OCLC and Bibliothèque nationale de France look forward to continuing a cooperative relationship that will benefit the library community worldwide for years to come," said Jay Jordan, OCLC President and CEO. "These valuable records from Bibliothèque nationale de France will further enrich WorldCat as the preeminent resource for scholarship, and will increase the visibility of the unique resources held by the national library of France."
"The Bibliothèque nationale de France is willing to increase the audience of its cultural heritage materials. We are convinced that the contribution of our entire bibliographic catalogue to WorldCat is likely to enhance the value of the library collections," said Bruno Racine, President of BnF. "The bibliographic data of the BnF catalogue, one of the richest catalogues in the world, will be of great benefit to OCLC users."
OCLC and Bibliothèque nationale de France have worked together on other projects, such as the cooperative effort to create the Virtual International Authority File (Fichier d'Autorité International Virtuel), which virtually combines multiple name authority files into a single name authority service, and French translations of the Dewey Decimal Classification system.
The WorldCat database continues to grow at an extraordinary rate, with many of the records entered into the world’s largest bibliographic resource coming from outside the United States, in non-English languages. Between July 1, 2007 and June 30, 2008, records from the National Library of Sweden, Swiss National Library, National Library of Australia and National Library of New Zealand were added to WorldCat.
In 1998, about one-third of the WorldCat database represented non-English-language work. This year, for the first time ever, WorldCat contained slightly more records representing non-English language materials than for English.
More information, a complete list and world map illustrating OCLC’s work with national libraries can be found at www.oclc.org/us/en/worldcat/catalog/national.
About Bibliothèque nationale de France
The Bibliothèque nationale de France is keeper of five centuries of cultural heritage. The BnF collects, catalogs, preserves and enriches this national heritage via legal deposit and acquisitions, in particular the French language and the French civilisation heritage, in all fields of knowledge. The BnF acquires all kinds of materials: books, manuscripts, engravings, photographs, maps, medals, coins, scores, audiovisuals and software. The BnF enhances the value its collections and makes them known, in particular by arranging exhibitions, conferences and by publishing books. The BnF is also monitoring a national network of cooperation among libraries and runs an international collaborative and exchange policy. The BnF is developing projects that extend its influence, such as the expansion of the Digital library Gallica and the mass digitization of its collections. For more information, visit the BnF Web site www.bnf.fr.
Founded in 1967 and headquartered in Dublin, Ohio, OCLC is a nonprofit library service and research organization that has provided computer-based cataloging, reference, resource sharing, eContent, preservation, library management and Web services to more than 60,000 libraries in 112 countries and territories. OCLC and its member libraries worldwide have created and maintain WorldCat, the world’s richest online resource for finding library materials. For more information, visit www.oclc.org.