I am very interested in French libraries system. I am in Seoul, Kores, so it is hard to find the infos that I need and those that I can get are mostly in French. I learned that there are three major library system in freance, which are municipal libraries, bibliotheques departementales de pret and bibliotheque publique d’information. Whould you please explain the major differnces and their focus of services? Only the municipal libraries lend the books to people? I would also want to know if your cente pompidor lend the books or only allow consultation on site. Also, differnces between bibliotheque and mediatheque? Thank you very much. Your prompt reply will be of immense help for me. Sincerely Hye sook Kim Dear bpi personnel, Thank you very much for your very kind responses. Because of your sincere help, I was able to have a clear understanding about Library system of France. Most of all, I will keep in mind and will be thankful how generous, kind and ready to help French people really are. Thank you very much again. Sincerely Hye Sook.


Réponse apportée le 09/04/2008  par PARIS Bpi – Actualité, Art moderne, Art contemporain, Presse


I will try to explain to you the French system with my poor english, and I already apologize.

there is different kind of libraries :

The national ones. It is curious but we have two main national libraries :

The « Bibliothèque nationale de France » (BNF) and the « Bibliothèque publique d’information » (BPI).

The most important role of the BNF is to insure the keeping of the national heritage, for French books, newspapers, movies, DVDs, radiocastings and so on.

You can find information in English in their own web site :


The main national role of BPI is to test new services. For instance Bpi has been the first library in France to provide free access to the internet, free of charge. ( I send you a specific presentation folder in English in attached field).

These two libraries provide only access on site to the documents, what ever can be the support. Both are under the control of the French Ministry of Culture and grant their funds from it, so at the national level.

Municipal libraries use to provide lending not only for books, but also for Cds or DVDs for instance. They grant their funds mostly from the municipality itself, from the local funds.

The reason why at the date we use mostly the word « médiathèque » which means that their is not only books and newspapers provided, but also music, moovies, somtimes softwares or databases, on CD or DVDs.

The « bibliothèques départementales de prêt  » work with buses travelling through the country, to provide information, books and so on to he population leaving far from a big town. They get their funds from the corresponding Departement.

And at least you find the university libraries.


Réponses à distance
Bibliothèque publique d’information
Site internet : http//www.bpi.fr

Fichier(s) joint(s) inclus(s): Bpi in English 2008.rtf

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