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Annual report 2001

Dr. Elisabeth Niggemann, Director General

Hybrid Library

Expressed in numbers, the result for the year 2001 is 287,214 + 292,543 = 579,757 = approximately 3,500 meters of shelves. This represents printed, microfilmed, electronic, hand-written and other works collected by Die Deutsche Bibliothek during the year 2001, raising the total number of publications held by the library to 17,965,590 "units". The roughly 44,000 electronic units, including both online materials and publications on physical media, account for only a small portion of the total, but their number is increasing daily.

It is true to say that electronic media are a significant part of the diverse landscape of information and publications, and they are gaining in importance continuously. What is not true is that printed works and other conventional media will soon be displaced across the board and replaced by electronic forms.

Thus developments over the past few years clearly show that the "hybrid library" is a central focus of activities at Die Deutsche Bibliothek. Although issues relating to digital and virtual libraries continue to dominate discussion in the library community, works printed on paper or stored on microfilm or sound recording media and other materials still play an important role in the work of Die Deutsche Bibliothek, as they do for all other libraries as well. Virtual and digital libraries make sense when they are integrated within the more comprehensive concept of a hybrid library with a mixed collection of media types. Emphasis must be placed on continuous improvement of the availability of digital, printed, traditional and new media. Consistent pursuit of this objective is reflected in the activities of the past year.

Focal Points of Library Work

Focal points in the work of Die Deutsche Bibliothek during the year included standardisation, further development of processes involved in the collection, archiving and availability of online publications and internal restructuring measures, such as the reorganisation of the Acquisition and Descriptive Cataloguing departments.

Personnel Matters

The year 2001 was marked by significant changes in library management. Effective December 1, Birgit Schneider became Director of the Deutsche Bücherei Leipzig and Deputy Director General of Die Deutsche Bibliothek. Her responsibilities also include planning, co-ordination and development of preservation measures at all locations of Die Deutsche Bibliothek in addition to her duties as Director of the Department of Subject Cataloguing at the Deutsche Bücherei Leipzig. She succeeds Irmgard Spencker as Deputy Director General and Joachim Kaubisch as Director of the Department of Subject Cataloguing at the Deutsche Bücherei Leipzig. Both of her predecessors retired in 2001. Jörg Räuber was named Director of the Department of Library Use, Archiving and Information in Leipzig, a post previously held by Irmgard Spencker. Michael Fernau was appointed Director of the Department of Central Administration and Legal Affairs in the summer of 2001. He succeeded Irene Fahrenheim, who retired effective October 1, 2000. In response to the results of an organisational analysis, the departments of Acquisition and Descriptive Cataloguing were consolidated at both the Deutsche Bücherei Leipzig and the Deutsche Bibliothek Frankfurt am Main. Director of the new consolidated department in Frankfurt since November 1, 2001 is Reinhard Rinn. Angela Matthias assume the position of Director in Leipzig as of December 1, 2001. The former directors of the departments of Descriptive Cataloguing, Christa Pohlmann in Leipzig and Rainer Erzepky in Frankfurt am Main, also retired during the year.

Standardisation and Rules

Having assumed responsibility for the co-ordination of activities in the areas of rules and standardisation in 2000, Die Deutsche Bibliothek established the new Office of Standardisation (Arbeitsstelle für Standardisierung, AfS). A viable organisational basis was developed in the course of the year 2001. Offices were set up for descriptive and subject cataloguing rules / electronic resources cataloguing, for authority files and for data formats and communication interfaces as sub-sections of the AfS tasked with specific responsibilities in the respective areas. Expert Groups support the work of these offices through consultation, discussion and the presentation of draft proposals. Responsibilities and procedural matters are detailed in the business procedure guidelines approved by the Standardisation Committee in June.

Discussion regarding conversion or migration of German rules and formats to international rules and formats was pursued vigorously throughout the year. Based upon the results of this discussion, the Standardisation Committee passed a milestone resolution at its meeting in December 2001: "The Standardisation Committee favours conversion from German to international rules and formats (AACR and MARC) in principle. A study is to be conducted for the purpose of establishing basic framework conditions, consequences and timing, placing particular emphasis on aspects of business management. In light of this decision, further development of the RAK is to be restricted to absolutely necessary modifications which do not conflict with international developments and is to be discontinued by the end of 2003 at the latest." An application for funding for this study was prepared for submission to the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG) in December 2001. The DFG is expected to render its decision in this matter in the spring of 2002. In light of the resolutions of the Standardisation Committee passed in November 2000 and May 2001, standardisation work focused initially on the timely development of the Rules for the Alphabetical Cataloguing (RAK). In response to the resolution cited above, the existing plan for the project to be devoted to the goal of revising the complete body of rules and integrating all special rules of the RAK is to be reviewed for the purpose of identifying absolutely necessary actions and determining international conformity.

Library and Archives of the Börsenverein

An outstanding accomplishment within the context of efforts to enhance the collections of Die Deutsche Bibliothek was the transfer of the library and historical archives of the Börsenverein des Deutschen Buchhandels. The two institutions reached agreement on the transfer of the library and the archives to Die Deutsche Bibliothek on deposit. This brings to Die Deutsche Bibliothek one of the largest German special collections of historical and current material in the fields of publishing and the book trade. The historical archives represent an ideal complement to the holdings of the old Börsenverein library acquired by the German Museum of Books and Writing (Deutsches Buch- und Schriftmuseum) of the Deutsche Bücherei Leipzig in 1953. The library and the archives are to be integrated into the context of the national library and the continuum of traditional heritage. Given appropriate placement, public presence and access, archiving and long-term preservation are thus ensured. At the request of the Börsenverein, the library and the archives are to be established at the Deutsche Bibliothek Frankfurt am Main.


The budget situation remains critical. As part of the federal government's budget control program, the annual contribution of the federal government to the operating budget of Die Deutsche Bibliothek was set at a fixed amount for fiscal years 2000 to 2004. Rising costs must be covered within this limit. These include all personnel costs, which must be paid by Die Deutsche Bibliothek as a direct federal institution under public law from its own budget. Drastic cost-cutting measures were adopted as a result of these budget restrictions, including a reduction of expenditures for building management and a self-imposed moratorium on new hiring and job replacements.


Fortunately, Die Deutsche Bibliothek is assured that planning goals for the urgently needed extension wing for the Deutsche Bücherei Leipzig can be met. The budget provides initial funds for construction in 2004. A Europe-wide architectural competition is currently in progress. Planning for project realisation is to begin in 2002, so that ground-breaking can be expected in the fall of 2004.

The German Music Archive Berlin (Deutsches Musikarchiv) has been located since 1978 at the site known as the "Siemensvilla", a protected national monument. The roof of the state-owned building is in urgent need of repair, and the building also requires reconstruction and expansion in order to meet the needs of the Music Archive (Musikarchiv). A search for more suitable alternatives in Berlin conducted in 2001 was fruitless. Before far-reaching decisions can be made, an economic feasibility study is to be carried out for the purpose of determining the most economical and sensible solution for accommodation of the Music Archive in Berlin.

Air-conditioning units installed in the ventilation systems of the reading rooms and the conference centre at the Deutsche Bibliothek Frankfurt am Main will now enable visitors to keep a "cool head" even during hot weather.

For organisational reasons and in order to ensure adequate conservation, the third underground book storage level at the Deutsche Bibliothek Frankfurt am Main, which has been empty until now, will soon be needed to accommodate the constantly expanding library collections. Now that funding is ensured, furnishing work can be initiated in the spring of 2002.

In-House Projects – Library Organisation

In response to the results of an organisational analysis, the departments of Acquisition and Descriptive Cataloguing were consolidated at both the Deutsche Bücherei Leipzig and the Deutsche Bibliothek Frankfurt am Main near the end of 2001. New process-oriented business procedures were introduced at the same time. The organisational structure of the two new departments in Leipzig and Frankfurt was developed on the basis of a rigorous analysis of working procedures in consultation with library staff members.

In a parallel process, Die Deutsche Bibliothek developed a concept for internal and external continuing education for library management personnel, with a particular focus on middle- and lower-level management.

Since October 2001, internal information is consolidated and published on the Intranet of Die Deutsche Bibliothek by a single office. Library staff members can now access up-to-date information quickly on the new information platform.

Work commenced on the migration of the central PICA software from the Tandem mainframe platform to SUN computers. This process also involves conversion to a new UNIX-based software. In addition, the Frankfurt and Berlin networks were completely migrated. Data lines connecting the three library locations and to the Internet were also expanded.

Acquisition systems for sound recordings and sheet music at the German Music Archive were successfully transferred to the new hardware platform.

Library Use

A total of 16,148 users placed 476,064 orders on 291 days at the Deutsche Bücherei Leipzig. At the Deutsche Bibliothek Frankfurt am Main (and the German Music Archive Berlin), 19,058 readers ordered 418,142 publications for use in the reading rooms on 270 days.

Demand for services offered by Die Deutsche Bibliothek in the reading rooms in Leipzig and Frankfurt remains very strong. Despite the tight budget and personnel situation, highest priority is still given to maintaining the quality of service. In order to ensure that the present level of quality is maintained, a new fee system was introduced in September. Usage fees are used to hire temporary personnel for the book storage areas and the check-out section. Additional revenues accruing from higher copying fees are used to cover a portion of preservation costs.

The new version of the OPAC activated simultaneously at the Deutsche Bücherei Leipzig, the Deutsche Bibliothek Frankfurt am Main and on the Internet in October 2001 offers users the benefits of shorter search times and improved search options.

Collections and Outstanding New Acquisitions

The collections at the Deutsche Bücherei Leipzig grew during the reporting year by 287,214 units to a total of 9,860,469 (excluding special materials). During the same period, the number of items in the collections of the Deutsche Bibliothek Frankfurt am Main (including the German Music Archive Berlin and the GEMA sheet music collection) increased by 292,543 to a total of 8,105,121 units. The number of online dissertations held by the library rose to 7,392.

Preservation and conservation measures for printed publications included the de-acidification of 24,000 kilograms of material – the equivalent of roughly 88,500 books. In addition, 35,000 pages – the equivalent of 157 volumes – were split and rebound. General binding and repair work was performed on 35,000 volumes.

The sound recordings recently acquired from the estate of deceased Swiss collector Franz Hutter thanks to financial support provided by the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft represent an excellent addition to the collection of the German Music Archive Berlin. These recordings comprise the most significant privately-owned collection of shellac records in Switzerland. Containing a total of 76,000 shellac records, LPs and singles, the collection represents a unique documentation of the history of the phonograph record in the German-speaking region.

The purchase of the archives of Alfredo Cahn represents a valuable addition to the German Exile Archive 1933 - 1945 (Deutsches Exilarchiv). The Adolf und Luisa Haeuser-Stiftung für Kunst und Kulturpflege, Frankfurt am Main provided generous support for the purchase. A translator, literary agent and literary scholar, Cahn (1902 - 1975), who lived in Buenos Aires, was one of the most important supporters of German-language literature – and especially exile literature – in Latin American. Among other things, his archives contain letters, postcards and telegrams from Stefan Zweig, Alfred Döblin, Albert Einstein and numerous other well-known personalities.

The German Museum of Books and Writing of the Deutsche Bücherei Leipzig was able to substantially expand its collection of works by Axel Bertram, a typographer, graphic designer and artist born in Dresden in 1936, through the acquisition of a selection of artistic and graphic materials. In addition to numerous works of graphic art, including stamps and coins of the former GDR, Bertram designed and developed periodicals, books and other printed materials.


A total of 231,705 publications were cited in the Deutsche Nationalbibliographie. Delivery of the Five-Year Index of the Deutsche Nationalbibliographie for 1996 - 2000 was completed for the most part in 2001. Demand for national bibliographic services remains strong.

Following the founding of the German Dewey Decimal Classification Consortium under the leadership of Die Deutsche Bibliothek in October 2000, the DDC Expert Group began work in early 2001. The group is responsible for providing professional guidance during the integration of the DDC into the Deutsche Nationalbibliographie, the development of the German version of the DDC, and the implementation of the DDC by the German library service centres. Agreement has now been reached with OCLC Forest Press on the inclusion of proposals for changes and improvements relating to German subject matter in the next (22nd) English edition of the DDC. Proposals for a new design for the Weekly Index of the Deutsche Nationalbibliographie containing new subject groups organised in accordance with the DDC were revised to achieve greater precision. Experts participating in the international workshops on "Decimal Classification – UDK and DDC" and "Internationality in Subject Cataloguing" discussed the current situation and future possibilities for the use of the international classification system before international audiences of library specialists. Within the framework of the European Renardus (Academic Subject Gateway Service Europe) project, Die Deutsche Bibliothek recently began issuing DDC notations for online dissertations.

The objective of planned co-operation agreement between Die Deutsche Bibliothek and the Buchhändler-Vereinigung GmbH is to improve the quality of the Verzeichnis Lieferbarer Bücher (Index of Books in Print, VLB) and the currency of data issued by Die Deutsche Bibliothek. Initial emphasis is to be placed on developing a standard online form for reporting titles by publishers to the VLB and Die Deutsche Bibliothek.

Progress has been made towards the goal of achieving complete online availability of title data of Die Deutschen Bibliothek. The last major catalogue conversion project undertaken by Die Deutsche Bibliothek involves the online introduction of the alphabetical catalogue for 1913 – 1973 into the PICA-/ILTIS system. Good progress has been made since the project began in 2000. Nearly half of the 3.7 million catalogue entries have now been converted. The project is scheduled to run until the end of 2002.

Digital Library

Die Deutsche Bibliothek is actively involved in intensive national and international dialogue on all aspects relating to the collection and long-term preservation of online publications.

During the past year, Die Deutsche Bibliothek began collecting, indexing, and preparing online publications for long-term preservation. In collaboration with the Electronic Deposit Library Task Group, the library has completed preparations for the collection and long-term preservation of online publications. The first publishers' online publications were acquired from 30 selected publishers in September 2001. This group has since been expanded. Publications are submitted on a voluntary basis. This expanded practical test will enable Die Deutsche Bibliothek to gather additional experience which can then be incorporated into the new Mandatory Deposit Directive and the Collection Guidelines. A legal foundation for the voluntary submission process was established on the basis of a model framework agreement concluded with the Börsenverein des Deutschen Buchhandels in February 2002. The model agreement applies generally to the treatment of all copyrighted publishers' publications and eliminates the need for individual contracts between publishers and Die Deutsche Bibliothek. The ideas developed by Die Deutsche Bibliothek regarding technical issues related to online publications are based primarily on the results of the European NEDLIB (Networked European Deposit Library) project completed last year.

Die Deutsche Bibliothek began collecting online dissertations and post-doctoral publications in July 1998 and has assumed responsibility for metadata format and the transfer interface for online dissertations. After completion of the "Dissertationen Online" project, the library established the Co-ordination Agency DissOnline in the spring of 2001. Among other things, the Co-ordination Agency is responsible for the continuing development of existing national and international standards, for providing assistance in the application of these standards, and for recruiting as many institutions interested in participating in a systematic process as possible. As of early 2002, 62 out of 73 university libraries registered for the submission program were using this process on a regular basis.

The DFG-sponsored project entitled "Distributed Digital Research Library / Periodicals of the German Exile Archive 1933 – 1945" (short form: Exilpresse digital) was extended for two more years. Within the framework of this project, the German Exile Archive 1933 - 1945 of Die Deutsche Bibliothek digitises selected exile newspapers and periodicals from its collections as well as materials from the Sammlung Exil-Literatur 1933 - 1945 of the Deutsche Bücherei Leipzig and other libraries.

Within the context of further progress in the development of the "Digital Library", Die Deutsche Bibliothek is also involved in co-operative projects focused on the reliable identification of the Uniform Resource Name (URN) and the Digital Object Identifier (DOI), and on the issues of "Legal Deposit" (CENL/FEP) and "Copyright" (the so-called Frankfurt Group as successor to TECUP).

Research Projects

The European Renardus project is devoted to the development of a research system for subject gateways. European national libraries, academic libraries and research institutions are working together effectively on this project. Die Deutsche Bibliothek is focusing attention on the areas of data interoperability and multilingual access. A standard pilot service has now been developed and was presented and evaluated in a series of workshops.

The objective of the Meta-Lib project part (Metadata Initiative of German Libraries, Development and Implementation of Conventions for Bibliographic Processing of Electronic Resources Using Dublin Core Metadata and Authority Data) is to develop and introduce metadata standards for various different types of resources using Dublin Core metadata and authority data. The recommendations for a metadata core set for distributed searches via virtual libraries developed in the project were presented and discussed at two metadata workshops. The final recommendation paper was then prepared and approved by the Project Co-ordination Task Group for Virtual Libraries. A workflow with personal metadata from the document author via the university library to the Name Authority File (PND) at Die Deutsche Bibliothek was set up for online dissertation reporting purposes. University libraries participating in a corresponding project report personal metadata on the basis of the metadata set using an online reporting form. Personal data are also offered as personal Websites on the Internet and can thus be accessed via metadata search engines.

Significant improvements are to be achieved in search mechanisms used to find such electronic publications as articles, periodicals and books in the fields of business and economics. The goal of another project funded by the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG) is to link the "Business and Economics" section of the Subject Authority File (Schlagwortnormdatei, SWD) with the Standard Thesaurus for Business and Economics (STW) by means of an automatic duplication check and intellectual post-processing. The objective is to enable users to search distributed databases with differing bibliographic standards through the medium of a single indexing language. The project was launched in early 2002.

Content Analysis, Retrieval and MetaData: Effective Networking (CARMEN) is a special project within the framework of the Global-Info research funding concept. The project focuses on further development of subject cataloguing on the basis of new processing methods with strong links to retrieval. In Work Package 4, "Persistent Identifiers and Metadata Management in Science", Die Deutsche Bibliothek is testing procedures for issuing, managing and using persistent identifiers for reliable identification of online publications. In September 2001, the library began issuing persistent identifiers for the online dissertations archived at Die Deutsche Bibliothek. Die Deutsche Bibliothek is currently working in close co-operation with the library service centres and university libraries within the framework of the project towards the goal of establishing a uniform standard identification system in Germany. In Work Package 12, "Cross-Concordance of Classifications and Thesauri", cross-concordances have been established between the Social Sciences, Political Science and Education sections of the SWD and the Social Sciences Thesaurus as well as selected subject heading material from the special information system for Education. These cross-concordances have been incorporated into the Virtual Social Sciences Library, which is scheduled to be offered online in early 2002. The cross-concordances enable users to conduct integrated subject-oriented searches in distributed databases processed using different systems.

The MACS (Multilingual Access to Subject Headings) project was launched in 1999 under the auspices of the Conference of European National Librarians (CENL). The goal of the project is to set up a direct link between the subject headings of the three comprehensive subject authority files – Rameau, Library of Congress Subject Headings (LCSH) and the SWD, thus enabling users to conduct subject searches across language boundaries. A prototype accessible on the Internet offering the functions of a link-management system and a multilingual retrieval system was presented in 2001. During the present phase, searches can be performed for the English, French and German descriptors in the subject areas theatre and sport. Additional subject areas are to be added continually. International interest in the project is strong, as the MACS model is also suitable for use in other language regions.

International Co-operation

The starting signal for "The European Library" (TEL) was sent out on February 1, 2001. This ambitious project is being funded by the European Union as part of Information Societies Technology Programmes (IST, Key Action 3). The goal of the project is to lay the technical, legal and organisational groundwork for a pan-European information service on the basis of distributed indexes of the digital and conventional holdings of the participating national libraries.

Gabriel, established as the WWW service of the European national libraries in 1997, also plays a role of importance in "The European Library". Newly designed during the past summer, this service offers access to uniformly structured information about the European national libraries, their collections and procedures for obtaining their services. Aside from its function as an online guide, Gabriel also serves as a model for other internationally networked services.

The Conference of European National Librarians (CENL) celebrated its fifteenth anniversary in 2001. The Conference is the independent federation of directors of the European national libraries, in which 41 libraries from the Member States of the European Council are represented. The goal of promoting co-operation among European national libraries has been achieved through work in numerous projects and initiatives. Current activities include, for example, the MACS and TEL projects.

Die Deutsche Bibliothek is a member of the International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions (IFLA) and is represented in a number of sections and working groups. In August 2003 the week-long IFLA conference is to be held in Berlin. Attracting three to four thousand participants, the IFLA conference is a welcome challenge and a significant event for German libraries. Die Deutsche Bibliothek is involved in a number of activities relating to conference preparation and organisation.

In advance of the 2003 IFLA conference, Die Deutsche Bibliothek is also collaborating with the Cataloguing Section of the IFLA in organising the "IFLA international conference of cataloguing rules – 'Towards an international common code'".

Cultural Program

An interesting program of events and exhibitions was presented in Leipzig, Frankfurt and Berlin again in 2001.

The high points of the exhibition year were the exhibition "Cultures in Context" at the Deutsche Bücherei Leipzig, presented in conjunction with the tenth anniversary of the working group "Sammlung Deutscher Drucke", and the continuation of the exhibition cycle entitled "Gutenberg 2000" with two new exhibitions at the German Museum of Books and Writing.

The Deutsche Bibliothek Frankfurt am Main dedicated a widely acclaimed exhibition on Greece, the country honoured at the 2001 at the Frankfurt Book Fair, to Greek author Georgios Seferis, winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature.

Outstanding cultural events included Martin Walser's reading from his novel "Der Lebenslauf der Liebe" in Frankfurt and the presentation of the "Hightech-Ketzereien" of American author and computer expert Clifford Stoll in Leipzig.

Die Deutsche Bibliothek organised a number of librarians' conferences at its three locations. The library also collaborated with other partners in setting up the international conferences entitled "Academic Publications in the Digital Age" in Berlin, "The 1st European Library Seminar" in Ljubljana and the "European Conference on Research and Advanced Technologies for Digital Libraries (ECDL)" in Darmstadt.

The Gesellschaft für das Buch, Friends of Die Deutsche Bibliothek provided support for the library, as it does every year, by helping fund the purchase of valuable additions to the collections and organising auxiliary events.


Alliances and partnerships have traditionally played a very important role in the work of Die Deutsche Bibliothek. The most persuasive evidence of this fact are the library's close ties with the German book trade and the international library community. The colourful history of Die Deutsche Bibliothek began on September 25, 1912, the date on which the Deutsche Bücherei was officially founded. Publishers and book traders were the driving force behind this effort. They helped bring the Bücherei into the world in co-operation with the city of Leipzig and the Kingdom of Saxony. Since then, the library has succeeded in creating and preserving a continuum of literature for Germany that has endured for 90 years. Publishers and book traders have served as reliable partners from the outset. The General Agreement on the Voluntary Submission of Online Publications provides an interim solution until a new mandatory deposit law is enacted and thus represents another step forward towards achievement of the goal of continuity in the collection of this form of publication as well. The General Agreement is regarded by other national libraries as an exemplary model.

The primary goal of our work at Die Deutsche Bibliothek is to grasp the opportunities that can and must emerge from the changes that have taken place in recent years – opportunities to achieve a quantum leap in the quality of the services we provide not only to book traders and libraries but to every individual in search of information and literature as well.

Last update: 21.02.2012

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