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60 Years of the IAEA Library

26 December 2017
<p>The IAEA Library was established in 1957 to provide scientific and technical information services to IAEA staff, Member States’ permanent missions in Vienna, official IAEA meeting participants, and affiliated researchers from nuclear research institutes, governmental organizations and laboratories. In June of the same year, the IAEA Preparatory Commission recommended “to maintain a technical reference library on peaceful uses of atomic energy at the headquarters of the Agency”. The IAEA Library had its genesis during the first IAEA General Conference held in October 1957 in the Vienna Konzerthaus.</p>
<p>Photo: IAEA Archives</p><p>For more than 60 years, the IAEA Library has collected, maintained and preserved a specialized collection on the peaceful uses of nuclear energy and its applications. Donated by the United States Atomic Energy Commission, the library’s first collection included some 16,000 scientific reports, 12,000 ‘micro cards’, and 100,000 catalogue cards.</p>
<p>Photo: IAEA Archives</p><p>The library’s mandate is to provide high quality reference, information and research services. Even in its initial stages, the library and documentation services included the preparation and supply of translated bibliographies, abstracts, reports and surveys, copies of documents and reports, planning and organization of national libraries, assistance in establishing contacts between institutions concerned with atomic energy, and arrangements for the exchange of publications and documents.</p>
<p>Photo: IAEA Archives</p><p>Dissemination of technical and scientific information on the peaceful applications of nuclear technology is an important activity of the IAEA. Pictured are IAEA publications from 1961 found in the Library’s collection.</p>
<p>Photo: IAEA Archives</p><p>The library’s collection expanded and diversified in the 1960s. As of 1965, the collection had grown to 22,000 books, 50,000 reports and 700 periodicals. At the time, the library served as the depository for all United States Atomic Energy Commission reports, resulting in the yearly receipt of some 7000 technical reports and microfiche. A large collection of United Nations (UN) documents were also made available.</p>
<p>Photo: IAEA Archives</p><p>Over the years, the IAEA Library has changed the way it conducts its activities, moving from the Cardex System to a modern, user friendly, electronic system, allowing remote access to a multitude of resources.</p>
<p>Photo: IAEA Archives</p><p>Between 1960 and 2006, a satellite library was established at the Nuclear Sciences and Applications Laboratories in Seibersdorf, Austria (pictured), offering specialized subjects to the staff, scientists, and laboratory technicians. 
In 1961, the Library of the International Laboratory of Marine Radioactivity in Monaco was also established with the technical assistance of the IAEA Library.</p>
<p>Photo: IAEA Archives</p>
<p>The IAEA Library contributed to the development of national libraries and in 1965 assisted in establishing the Marie Curie Library at the Abdus Salam International Centre for Theoretical Physics (ICTP) in Trieste, Italy. Its specialized collection includes high energy, nuclear and plasma physics, condensed matter, mathematics, and environmental sciences. </p>
<p>Photo: IAEA Archives</p><p>In 1979, the IAEA Library merged with the libraries of the United Nations (UN) affiliated organizations based in Vienna to form the Vienna international Centre (VIC) Library, and in 2000 it reverted back to the IAEA Library.</p>
<p>Photo: IAEA Archives</p><p>The introduction in 1994 of VICLION, an integrated library system, enabled remote access to the library’s collection of journals, newspapers, encyclopaedias, and more for staff of the IAEA, Seibersdorf, and Monaco.</p>
<p>Photo: T. Kalapurackal/IAEA</p>
<p>In 2005, the IAEA Library, together with the the Atomic Energy of Canada Limited (AECL) Library, founded the International Nuclear Library Network (INLN). The network is a global forum of nuclear libraries, information centres and organizations that share similar information management and research missions. Coordinated by the IAEA Library, the network consists of 58 members from 39 IAEA Member States.</p>
<p>Photo: T. Kalapurackal/IAEA</p>
<p>Historically, the IAEA Library has played an important role in nuclear information sharing. Librarians assist with information queries from Member State officials, as seen here during the 2007 General Conference.</p>
<p>Photo: T. Kalapurackal/IAEA</p>
<p>The 2012 IAEA General Conference side event, Nuclear Energy for Energy Security, was held at the IAEA Library.</p>
<p>Photo: T. Kalapurackal/IAEA</p><p>The IAEA Library’s outreach programme provides hands-on training about the library’s resources and services. Library staff explains the various information retrieval techniques to young scientists from IAEA Member States during a 2013 training session.</p>
<p>Photo: T.Kalapurackal/IAEA</p>
<p>Today the IAEA Library collection has more than 1.3 million print and electronic resources in all areas of nuclear energy and its applications. It also covers a wide range of non-nuclear topics, such as international relations, project management, personal skills development, information technology, and training and evaluation.</p>
<p>Photo: T. Kalapurackal/IAEA</p><p>The library’s collection can be searched worldwide through its online catalogue and materials can be requested through inter-library loans.</p> 
<p>Photo: T. Kalapurackal/IAEA</p><p>Affiliated researchers from IAEA Member States can request access to the IAEA Library to utilize its print and online resources on peaceful uses of nuclear science and technology and related fields.</p>
<p>Photo: S. Ticevic/IAEA</p><p>In April 2017, the IAEA Library organized an event celebrating World Book and Copyright Day, highlighting the importance of nuclear information sharing and promoting access to trusted, relevant nuclear literature and information resources.</p>
<p>Photo: D. Calma/IAEA</p><p>The IAEA Library continues to serve thousands of users yearly, providing a specialized collection of nuclear information, promoting information exchange and supporting research activities.</p>
<p>Photo: T. Kalapurackal/IAEA.</p>
<p>Text: Bojan Cirkovic, Sabina Ticevic, Rebecca Kunz, IAEA Library, IAEA Department of Nuclear Energy.</p>

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