Vienna Declaration (EBLIDA / NAPLE Forum)

At the joint conference of EBLIDA and NAPLE Forum, held in Vienna in May 2009, it was agreed to strengthen the role and potential of the library service throughout Europe in supporting the European Knowledge Society. Accordingly, EBLIDA and NAPLE Forum call on the European Commission to make progress through the following four recommendations:

1. White paper „Public Libraries in the Knowledge Society“:

EBLIDA and NAPLE Forum call on the European Commission to adopt a white paper that describes the new role of public libraries in the European Knowledge Society and recommends and encourages member states to act on behalf of their libraries. The white paper should be based, amongst other input, on the work of a high-level group of libraries established by the Commission.

2. Knowledge Centre:

We further call on the European Commission to establish a European Knowledge Centre for public libraries that will provide coordinated, current and reliable information on the public library services in all European member states and the EEA and which will be based at EBLIDA.

3. European funded projects:

Foster European funded projects that promote the development of libraries in a meaningful and sustainable way. Projects should target the development of a European library infrastructure that would complement the existing projects with high political visibility. In addition to these highly visible digital library development projects a common infrastructure for public libraries must be developed in order to accelerate the uptake of newly created online services and promote active European citizenship, as well as to provide wide learning opportunities.

4. Copyright:

Abolish barriers in the European Union that contradict the idea of the development of a Knowledge Society. A fair copyright policy is required, which considers the meaningful rights of the right-holders, but which at the same time establishes reasonable exceptions for the work of libraries.

EBLIDA is the European Bureau of Library, Information and Documentation Associations, an independent umbrella association of national library, information, documentation and archive associations and institutions in Europe.

NAPLE, National Authorities for Public Libraries in Europe, is an international non-governmental association pursuing the interests of the national library authorities in Europe. Its main aim is to promote principles and strategies for public library policies.

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