National Libraries Section

Division: Library Types

The National Libraries Section is concerned with the full range of functions within national libraries.

The Section also works closely with the Conference of Directors of National Libraries (CDNL).

National libraries have special responsibilities, often defined in law, within a nation's library and information system. These responsibilities vary from country to country but are likely to include: the collection via legal deposit of the national imprint (both print and electronic) and its cataloguing and preservation; the provision of central services (e.g., reference, bibliography, preservation, lending) to users both directly and through other library and information centres; the preservation and promotion of the national cultural heritage; acquisition of at least a representative collection of foreign publications; the promotion of national cultural policy; and leadership in national literacy campaigns.

National libraries often serve as a national forum for international programmes and projects. They may have a close relationship with national governments, may be concerned with the development of national information policies, and may act as a conduit for the views of other sectors of the profession. Occasionally they also serve the information needs of the legislature directly.

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This Section is sponsoring: National Organizations and International Relations Special Interest Group.

National Libraries, Sections

Last update: 7 July 2020

Latest News

IFLA NILP SIG – closing statement

The IFLA NILP SIG completed its work at the end of 2019, after two 4-year terms, and submitted its final report to the Professional Committee of IFLA.

19 November 2020

National Libraries Section Annual Report 2018-2019 is now available!

The Annual Report for 2018-2019 has been finalised and is now available.

8 June 2020

National Libraries Section Action Plan 2019-2020 Now Available!

New plans and objectives for 2019-2020 have been agreed by the National Libraries Section.

24 January 2020