Digital libraries are the gateway to cultural and scientific heritage. They try to solve the information gap through the access and dissemination of digital content, but to do so we have to solve the existing digital divide before. Digital libraries seek to eliminate geographical and social boundaries, as well as promote learning and understanding of the world’s richness and diversity.
A digital library is an online collection of good quality digital objects, created or compiled and managed in accordance with internationally accepted principles for the creation of collections, and which are made available in a manner Consistent and enduring and supportive of the services needed to enable users to find and use those resources.
The IFLA/UNESCO manifesto on digital libraries speaks of the fundamental right of access to information and the need to make available to the world, in a fast and economic way, all the existing wealth of assets.
The dissemination of information allows citizens to benefit from lifelong learning and education. Information on global achievements makes it possible for everyone to participate constructively in creating their own social environment.
This makes it necessary to digitize this patrimony by the libraries (to which the archives must be added) in order to promote the “creation, dissemination, use and preservation of data, information and knowledge”.
Digital libraries are a complement to digital archives and initiatives for the preservation of information resources.
They must also adapt to commonly accepted standards and protocols that improve dissemination and access.
Interoperability and endurance are fundamental to enable digital libraries to communicate with each other.
Collaboration between libraries becomes more than necessary, it is essential. The goal must be to create a digital information network. But for this it is necessary of strategy and active support on the part of the governments. There is a need for legislation and funding. The long-term objective, as the manifesto indicates, is to “bridge the gap and strengthen the development of education, literacy and culture, but above all to provide access to information.”
The mission and the 7 objectives of the digital libraries
The manifesto highlights the mission of digital libraries and what their objectives are. Digitization, access, preservation, interoperability, promotion, creation of awareness, importance of libraries … are some of the highlights.
The mission of digital libraries is to provide direct access to informative, digital and non-digital resources, in a structured and reliable way, in order to link information technology, education and culture in libraries Current.
Objectives of the Digital libraries: