National Library of the Netherlands and OCLC establish digital preservation center for European libraries, embark on 400,000-record conversion project
The Koninklijke Bibliotheek (the National Library of the Netherlands), OCLC and OCLC PICA are working together to provide preservation, digitization and retrospective conversion services that will increase access to valuable European library materials.
OCLC and the Koninklijke Bibliotheek will operate Strata Preservation N.V., a center to digitize and preserve the rich history recorded in centuries-old European collections. The Koninklijke Bibliotheek, which already operates a microfilming service in The Hague, will work with OCLC Digital & Preservation Resources to digitize, microfilm and preserve library materials in Europe.
OCLC Digital & Preservation Resources operates digital and preservation service centers in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, and Lacey, Washington, in the United States.
Strata Preservation focuses primarily on microfilming and digitizing the vulnerable and unique collections of European cultural heritage institutions-such as libraries, archives and museums-that need to be preserved and become more accessible to the public.
"OCLC Digital & Preservation Resources has always been positioned as an international service based on cooperation, as well as a worldwide resource," said Jay Jordan, president and CEO, OCLC. "Strata Preservation will help to ensure that the treasures in European libraries are preserved at the Koninklijke Bibliotheek with the help and expertise OCLC can provide, and that these unique library items are more visible and accessible to scholars around the world."
In a separate agreement, OCLC and OCLC PICA will work with the Koninklijke Bibliotheek to convert 400,000 of its records to machine-readable form in a three-year project to begin in September 2002, making the records available online and the materials they represent more accessible to library users worldwide. OCLC staff will use the OCLC PICA GGC (in Dutch: Gemeenschappelijk Geautomatiseerd Catalogiseersysteem) database, PICA's Shared Cataloguing System, and WorldCat, the OCLC online union catalog of more than 50 million records, to convert the records. The work will be converted to the GGC database offered through OCLC PICA.
"The creation of Strata Preservation NV and signing the retro contract with OCLC PICA both emphasize the good working relationship between KB and OCLC," said Wim van Drimmelen, director general, Koninklijke Bibliotheek (KB). "Combining the expertise of OCLC and the KB in the field of preservation and digitization, I consider a step forward in the international efforts to improve access to cultural heritage now and in the future."
The Koninklijke Bibliotheek (KB) is the National Library of the Netherlands, founded in 1798. The KB is an autonomous administrative body funded by the Ministry of Education, Culture & Science. The KB's mission is to provide universal access to knowledge and culture of the past and present by providing high-quality services for research, study and cultural enrichment. The KB is the official Deposit library for Dutch printed and electronic publications. As a research library, the KB focuses on Dutch history, language and culture in a wide international context.
Through research and development, the KB contributes to innovation in information services by working with national and international partners. The KB has evolved into an international leading expert centre for digitization, long-term digital archiving and preservation. The KB promotes national and international cooperation by undertaking coordinative tasks and offering policy and administrative support. The KB manages two major national programmes aimed at improving long-term accessibility of the Dutch cultural heritage, Metamorfoze and Memory of the Netherlands.
OCLC PICA is the European library cooperative, helping libraries serve their users by providing economical access to knowledge through innovation and collaboration. OCLC PICA offers libraries services to facilitate library management and automation, online information services for end users, and an integrated infrastructure for libraries outside the Netherlands.
OCLC PICA headquarters is located in Leiden, housing the central staff and the Information Technology Center (ITC) of OCLC PICA. ITC develops and supports OCLC PICA products and is responsible for the sales, implementation and maintenance of the central library systems to consortia or regions outside the Netherlands.
OCLC PICA has three regional offices. The office in Birmingham serves the U.K. and Ireland, Scandinavian countries, Eastern Europe and Southern Africa. The office in Leiden serves the Benelux, Germany, Austria and Switzerland. The office in Paris serves France, Spain, Italy, Portugal, Greece, Cyprus, Slovenia, Turkey and Israel.