European National Libraries: a Review of the Year’s Activities 1999- 2000

Michael Smethurst


This review of the activities of the National Libraries in membership of the Conference of European National Librarians has again been compiled from the summary reports for the year 1999 submitted by the Directors to the CENL Secretariat at the Koninklijke Bibliotheek in The Hague. The reports include developments in both 1999 and the early part of 2000, since they relate essentially to the start and end dates of the financial years of each library. In all I received reports from 30 libraries, but a number of those who reported in previous years have not done so this time. Following the pattern established in previous years, I have not reported on the everyday work of the libraries, nor have I quoted extensive statistics or financial figures. Rather I have sought, as in the past, to convey a general sense of the achievements and concerns of the libraries, highlighting those activities that are at the core of their work. As always, my selection of what to include has been governed by the emphasis that the individual library places on particular achievements. To those libraries that feel that I have omitted what they see to be notable achievements, I apologise, as I do to those where my understanding of their use of technical terms has led me to misinterpret what they have reported.

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