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NL Professional

Work accomplished by the Bookbinding Service
Work accomplished by the Bookbinding Service
© NL

The fundamental mission of the Swiss National Library (NL) is to collect, inventory and make available Swiss cultural heritage in written form. Thus this institution is a valuable source of written documents, which allow a better understanding of Switzerland and its inhabitants.

Every year, some 60'000 items are added to the NL collection, every day, specialists add as many as 160 publications to the collection (books, magazines, maps, manuscripts, iconographic documents, electronic documents, etc.) Once inventoried according to standardised rules in the online catalogues, these publications officially become part of the collections. Every fifteen days, the Swiss national bibliography, “The Swiss Book” lists new Swiss publications. The conservation department ensures that proper conservation measures are taken to preserve all original documents in optimal up-to-standard storage conditions.

Because collaboration with national and international partners is essential, the exchange of knowledge and experiences, whether in joint projects or working groups and specialised groups, or in all types of training opportunities and conferences, is indispensable for the systematic development of professional librarians capable of meeting future challenges, particularly in the new era of electronic publications.

The NL plays an active role in the training of professionals in the areas of information and documentation, photography, bookbindery and conservation. It also participates in university research projects related to literature.

The NL also manages the ISSN Centre Switzerland. The ISSN, “International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)”, is a standardised international code, which allows the unequivocal identification of all serial publications. This service is offered to Swiss newspaper and magazine publishers.


Last updated on: 12.02.2014

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