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The European Bureau of Library, Information and Documentation Associations is an independent umbrella association of library, information, documentation and archive associations and institutions in Europe.

Goal 4: 2. Library Policies and Best Practices

SDG 4 is quite obviously the natural river bed for many library activities. Reading is at the core of the mission of public libraries; therefore, their initiatives encompass a wide range of activities both in content and in the public that is targeted. They promote the difference between deep reading (of books and other digital or printed matters) and light reading (in social media), as highlighted in EU-read, a Consortium of European entities dealing with reading activities. An impressive number of projects, often funded by the Erasmus+ programme, are being implemented for children as well for adults engaged in digital literacy. (https://publiclibraries2030.eu/2020/02/embarking-on-the-digital-travellers-journey/)

The French Agenda 2030 et bibliothèques website lists some 100 activities taking place in French libraries and covering SDG 4. The IFLA Library Map of the worldlists SDG stories in at least five European countries (Belgium, the Czech Republic, Germany, the Netherlands, Romania).“Treffpunkt Deutsch“ is a cooperative library project providing access to language training and educational resources to the immigrant community in Germany; it is implemented at the Stadtbibliothek Heilbronn (and meets both SD Goals 4 and 5).

While the nature of the content is more or less determined by library specializations (academic, public, research, school, special libraries), a reinforced investment concern library services oriented at special publics.

Without pretending to be exhaustive, these are the fields in which SDG 4 applies in libraries:

  • Extended general support to students;
  • Young students having special needs (dyslexia, etc.),
  • Relapse into illiteracy;
  • Digital illiteracy
  • Language courses and in particular, language courses for the host country for immigrants;
  • Extended library openings on special events;
  • Libraries as social meeting points for women at home and/or of non-national origin;
  • Vocational training;
  • Use of digital resources and databases;
  • Children reading;
  • EU information and access to EU databases;
  • Sources in open access.


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