Culture is future » Innovation and digital


Always Further - National Library of France looking for partners to digitize.

bnfThe National Library of France (BNF) and the French Ministry of Culture and Communication launched last Wednesday a call for private partnership to digitize and develop the collections of the BNF.

The BNF continues its program started 10 years ago – especially since the agreement with Frederic Mitterrand, minister of Culture and Communication to digitize 500,000 books unobtainable in bookstores. The institution has also practiced crowdsourcing with its operation “adopt a book” similar to the Indian initiative, which allows readers to support the digitization of cultural heritage.

The BNF has identified 12 types of documents: « Ancient books from 1470 to 1700, a set of 300,000 to 500,000 non-copyrighted print matters, French press from 1780 to 1940, 78rpm records and LPs, medieval or modern manuscripts, French photography and cinema up to the World War II.” Each company can offer its services and propose its solution for digitalizing the works.

The total cost of this digitalization should amount to 150 million Euros, “the equivalent of more than twenty years at the current rate”. Then the project would greatly accelerate the process, and “triple the current volume of Gallica in just a few years”. In return, companies can find a recovery with an economic development of the works. The library, vigilant on the respect of copyright, added that the using of documents will be restricted,  exclusive rights may be conferred but only for a limited period.

To go further


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Credits: Sebastien Andréi