Representatives of the BnL and the University of Luxembourg, as well as Minister of Culture Sam Tanson, signing the agreement; Credit: BnL

The National Library of Luxembourg (BnL) and the University of Luxembourg today signed a framework convention outlining new avenues of cooperation.

On 10 July 2019, the Minister of Culture, Sam Tanson, and the President of the Governance Council of the University of Luxembourg, Yves Elsen, as well as the Director of the BnL, Monique Kieffer, and the Rector of the University of Luxembourg, Stéphane Pallage, signed a framework convention between the BnL and the University, in the premises of the new BnL building in Luxembourg-Kirchberg which will open to the public on 1 October 2019.

The Framework Convention has a dual purpose. On the one hand, it defines the future cooperation between the Faculty of Law, Economics and Finance (FDEF) and the BnL, and on the other hand, it regulates the modalities of cooperation between the BnL and the University's Luxembourg Learning Centre (LLC).

The establishment of the new BnL building in Kirchberg, near the FDEF site, and the opening of the new LLC building in Esch-Belval, have led the University and the BnL to expand their existing cooperation. The framework agreement sets the terms and conditions for the reception by the BnL, within its new building, of FDEF students, teachers and researchers from the Luxembourg Kirchberg and Limpertsberg campuses. In particular, the convention regulates the development of physical and digital collections and the methods of their provision to best meet the joint needs of members of the FDEF and users of the BnL. A steering committee composed of representatives of both parties will be set up to consult and ensure the complementarity of collections in law, economics and finance on the site of the BnL and the LLC in Esch-Belval.

Indeed, this framework agreement combines in a single agreement existing cooperation between the BnL and the University, while adapting it to more recent developments, in particular with regard to the impact of new communication technologies and the rapid growth of electronic documentation in all its forms.

For instance, the agreement regulates the participation of the LLC in the national network of Luxembourg public sector libraries, whose IT infrastructures, in particular the search portal, are managed by the BnL for the benefit of all member libraries.

The agreement also defines the consortium cooperation between the University and the BnL in the acquisition, management and provision of digital publications and their integration with the portal, taking into account, in particular, the transformation of the practices of access, indexing and publishing by the principles of Open Data and Open Access. The ensuing mutualisation, in particular the sharing of acquisition costs, will allow the duplication of the offer in number of titles that are available to all members of the University and users registered with the BnL. Currently this offering consists of 77,800 ejournal titles, 620,000 ebooks and 390 databases covering all areas of knowledge. This consortial cooperation is carried out in consultation with the Public Research Centres.

The framework agreement still provides for the creation of an interlibrary loan service between the BnL and the LLC for the benefit of all their respective users. In addition, the integration of the physical and digital collections of the BnL and LLC into a single access and research portal will increase the visibility and accessibility of the collections of the two main research and study libraries in Luxembourg.

Finally, the pooling of document infrastructures and acquisition policies in the field of digital publications will also allow significant economies of scale while considerably increasing the available supply for the respective users of the two libraries. Through its registration with the BnL, any resident of Luxembourg aged 14 and over has access to a wide range of digital publications complementing the printed collections of Luxembourg libraries.