No. 34




Digitalisation of culture at the example of the Estonian National Library

14 December 2016


RiTo No. 34, 2016

  • Kristel Veimann

    Kristel Veimann

    National Library of Estonia, Director of Library Services

  • Riin Olonen

    Riin Olonen

    National Library of Estonia, Library System Manager

  • Kairi Felt

    Kairi Felt

    National Library of Estonia, Head of Collection Development Department

In the future, the amount of digital information is going to explode, changing the role of the libraries. This will bring along new obligations and new challenges, and lead to the development of totally new services.

The new Legal Deposit Copy Act will enter into force on 1 January 2017. The purpose of this Act is to ensure the creation, long-term preservation, and consistent accessibility of the most comprehensive collection of publications (and their output-ready files) which are essential to the Estonian culture.

The new Act will profoundly change the role of the National Library of Estonia in storing cultural heritage. Together with each new print publication, the National Library will receive its digital dataset, which will reduce the need to digitise publications in order to ensure their preservation. All legal deposit copies will be submitted to the National Library who will forward three of these to the preserving libraries within five working days. These libraries are the Archival Library of the Estonian Literary Museum, Academic Library of Tallinn University, and University of Tartu Library.

Newspapers previously available in the digital archive DIGAR have been transferred to the portal DIGAR Estonian Newspapers ( This contains the full texts of more than 1.6 million newspaper pages with 4.5 million articles.