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About this Site - First time visitors

Updated: 02 SEP 98

R&D in the Libraries sector of the Telematics Programme aims to facilitate access to knowledge held in libraries throughout the European Union while reducing disparities between national systems and practices. Topics covered include networking (OSI, Web), cataloguing (OPACs), resource discovery, imaging, multimedia (CD-ROM), distance learning, public libraries, music information, standards, copyright and policy coordinaton.

Telematics for Libraries , one of the 13 sectors of the Telematics Applications Programme(1994-1998), builds on the results of the Libraries component of the Third Framework Programme . Covering three areas of action, it fosters projects concerned with library networking and related services. It provides for continuity in addressing local systems and services and it has an element of novelty now that it covers extensions to the rest of the networked information universe, in which libraries can act as intermediaries to knowledge discovery. The centrepiece is the integration of building blocks from previous work into coherent interconnected and open services across Europe.

This site therefore has a dual purpose:

We also hope that by making our resources widely available, we will contribute to a better general understanding of priorities for cooperative action in support of networked library services.

Our pages are therefore structured into five main areas of interest covering programme information and related events , completed, current and new projects , support activities such as concerted actions and workshops, studies published by the Commission and background documents with links to external resources. Among the background areas covered are national policies for libraries in the Information Society, music resources in the library context, library management systems journals on libraries and information science, general and technicalresources related to library technology, distance learning , services for children smart cards andmultilingual tools and services for librarians. There are also special sections on the emerging scene in Central and Eastern Europe and on public libraries in the Information Society. Last but not least, our English-language section is now supplemented by resource pages in French ,German Italian and Spanish .

For ease of access to all the above topics and many more, we have now introduced an A-Z site index .

Our activities are focused on applying technology to the creation of new library services. They include a range of projects dealing with bibliographic services, digital imaging, library management, multimedia and access (including services for the blind, for children and other types of user) and a number of support actions covering public libraries, copyright, networking, national bibliographic services and music information. Typically, activities co-funded by the Commission are managed by partners from several Member States consisting of libraries, networking specialists, software houses, publishers, research departments and universities. We are also drafting a Green Paper on the Role of Libraries in the Information Society.

While we are still supporting a considerable number of projects under the current Fourth Framework Programme, we are already defining priorities for the Fifth Framework in which libraries will principally be involved in the Multimedia Content and Tools area of the User-Friendly Information Society programme.

The small team working on Telematics for Libraries at the European Commission is based in Luxembourg in the same department as two other sectors of Telematics, Information Engineering and Language Engineering . Our offices are in the Euroforum building on the southern outskirts of the city.

While our site is already one of the most frequently accessed on I*M Europe, we are constantly trying to improve it by including more and better pertinent information and links. We therefore always welcome suggestions for general improvements or specific additions and modifications. These should preferably be sent by e-mail: .

European Commission 
DGXIII Telematics for Libraries 
Contact: Concha Fernandez de la Puente 

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