20 August 2020

International Seminar of the National Libraries of the Baltic Countries LiLaEst 2020

On 17–20 August, Lithuania hosted the seminar of the national libraries of the Baltic countries LiLaEst2020, which took place in the Molėtai Region. This seminar is a biennial gathering of library professional from Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia. The Martynas Mažvydas National Library of Lithuania was represented by a team of the Library’s staff under the supervision of the Director General Prof. Dr. Renaldas Gudauskas.

This year’s seminar took the theme “Possibilities for Reusing Digital Content”. The seminar’s participants reviewed where the national libraries stand in this field as well as shared their good practice and future visions. The seminar project was partly financed by the Lithuanian Council for Culture.

The key idea of the seminar was that culture must not be imprisoned within repositories and archives. The concern of all culture professional around the world has long been not only collect, register and preserve cultural heritage assets but also present them to the general public. Ample possibilities for sharing cultural heritage have been provided by innovative digitization means and the Internet. At present there is a new trend of reusing works, when new meanings are created after a work has been put into another context or supplemented by unexpected elements. The seminar featured reports and insights by representatives and experts of the national libraries of Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia about their experience, intentions and problematic issues regarding the unlocking and reusing their data.

The executive of the Martynas Mažvydas National Library of Lithuania prof. Dr. Renaldas Gudauskas greeted the seminar’s participants and presented the results of the 2018/20 performance of the Library as well as the challenges and new possibilities related to the COVID-19 pandemic. The Director General of the National Library of Estonia Janne Andersoo sent her best wishes and a video recording of her report. Greetings and latest developments from Latvia were presented by Dagnija Baltina.

Juozas Markauskas from the Baltics Audiovisual Archives Council discussed issues of the management of digital resources. Anda Baklane from Latvia presented a report about digital humanities in Latvian libraries and the results of the project “Going Beyond Search: Advancing Digital Competences in Libraries and Research Communities“. In her report, Jolanta Budriūnienė, the Director of the Documentary Heritage Research Department at the Martynas Mažvydas National Library of Lithuania, dealt with the interpretation of the cultural heritage in the creation of the cooperation network of the Baltic countries as well as achievements of the Baltic Digitizer Network.

The representative of Europeana Henning Scholz sent a video recording of his report “The More You Give, the More You Get” Presentation of Europeana Strategy, Image and Metadata Quality Guidelines (Publishing Frameworks)“. Mahendra Mahey from the British Library spoke about the British Library’s data reuse laboratory projects. There were also discussions regarding the reuse of cultural heritage, creative workshops on digital humanities and reporter sessions.

The LiLaEst Seminars have been held in turn in one of the three Baltic countries since 1968. They attempt to retain long-lived traditions such as solemn opening ceremonies with raising the State flags and that of LiLaEst as well as ethnical evenings. In two years, LiLaEst 2022 will be held in Estonia.