FUNDAMENTAL LIBRARY OF BELARUSIAN STATE UNIVERSITY DESIGNATED UNITED NATIONS DEPOSITORY LIBRARY
FUNDAMENTAL LIBRARY OF BELARUSIAN STATE UNIVERSITY DESIGNATED UNITED NATIONS DEPOSITORY LIBRARY19981223 The Fundamental Library of the Belarusian State University in Minsk, Belarus, has been designated a depository library, making it part of an international network of 367 libraries in 141 countries that brings United Nations documents and publications to users around the world. The Fundamental Library of the Belarusian State University becomes the second depository library in Belarus.
The Belarusian State University was founded in 1921. The Fundamental Library has a collection of 2 million volumes, over 1,000 current periodicals, and also promotes the use of microforms and CD-ROMs. The Library has 126 professional librarians on its staff. It is used by 15,000 students, including 700 students of the Faculty of International Relations, and by 1,700 lecturers and professors.
Since March, the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) office in Belarus, in cooperation with the Belarusian State University, has been implementing a project entitled "Establishing a Centre for United Nations Studies". The project is designed to establish a Centre for United Nations Studies at the Belarusian State University. The main objectives of the Centre are to promote United Nations goals and ideals in the Republic of Belarus and to contribute to research and studies on various United Nations activities, including, in particular, international security, economic, social and humanitarian issues, environment, international law and human rights. One of the main objectives of the project is the establishment and development of a United Nations depository library at the Faculty of International Law of the Belarusian State University.
Since 1946, the Dag Hammarskjöld Library at United Nations Headquarters in New York, which is part of the Department of Public Information (DPI), has arranged for the distribution of United Nations documents and publications to users around the world through its depository library system. At present, there are 365 United Nations depository libraries: 53 are located in Africa, 99 in Asia and the Pacific, 32 in Eastern Europe, 84 in Western Europe, 46 in Latin America and the Caribbean, and 53 in North America. These libraries receive United Nations materials, with the understanding that their
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collections will be maintained in good working order and be available to the public free of charge.
United Nations Member States, as well as non-members, are entitled to one "free depository", usually the national library in the capital city. In addition, the national parliamentary library, if open to the public, is also entitled to receive material free of charge. Other depository libraries pay a token annual contribution to receive United Nations documentation. Developing countries pay a significantly smaller amount.
The designation of depositories is carried out by the United Nations Publications Board. The degree of development of the requesting libraries and the overall geographic distribution of depository libraries in the countries concerned are among the criteria used.
United Nations professional librarians and information officers make periodic visits to the depository libraries to provide assistance and training in the management of the United Nations collection. In addition, special training seminars for depository librarians are periodically organized by the Dag Hammarskjöld Library, Department of Public Information, New York, and by the United Nations Office at Geneva.
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