Hungarian Library Institute

The Hungarian Library Institute (HLI; was earlier known as the Centre for Library Science and Methodology. Its new name and responsibilities were defined in 2000 by a decree (6/2000.(March 24) Ministry of Cultural Heritage). The predecessor Centre was founded in 1959. The Institute continues to be within the framework of the National Széchényi Library, is headed by a director.

The tasks of HLI are determined partly by the director-general of the national library, partly by the minister of culture, through the relevant ministry’s library department.

It is the objective of the Hungarian Library Institute to promote the social acceptance and embedding of libraries, to build out and develop relations between libraries and society.

The Hungarian Library Institute

•    carries out research, analysis and development activities related to the operation of the national library system and to the use of libraries;
•    initiates, elaborates and publishes standards and guidelines for the library field;
•    elaborates guidelines and standards for libraries, carries out methodological work;
•    summarises, analyses and provides statistical data for the whole country;
•    collects, analyses and archives the findings of professional supervision surveys;
•    offers continuing education for library professionals and post-secondary training courses;
•    provides library and information services for library managers, the library profession, academic education for librarianship and library research;
•    may be commissioned with additional tasks at any time, as defined by the responsible minister.

D e p a r t m e n t   o f   T r a i n i n g   a n d   H u m a n   R e s o u r c e s   D e v e l o p m e n t

Main tasks:

•    co-operates with library schools within and outside the school system, professional associations and non-governmental organisations;
•    offers and co-ordinates courses and trainings for library professionals, gives advice about continuous education; applies and transfers new training methods, prepares traditional and distance learning programmes, publishes textbooks, printed and electronic educational and practical materials (;
•    offers Librarian Assistant and Assistant Librarian courses in the framework of vocational trainings as an accredited institution ( and also offers accredited further education courses for professionals (;
•    audits and supervises the Librarian Assistant vocational trainings by proxy of ministry Library Department;
•    carries on exam organisation for Library Assistants, Assistant Librarians and other related professionals all over the country by proxy of the Ministry of National Resources (;
•    supports the education of Hungarian librarians in the neighbouring countries (;
•    contributes to the development of standard certification of professionals in Hungary in the information and documentation sector at a European level, on the basis of the CERTIDOC system;
•    carries out ad hoc labour market analyses on the request of the Ministry of National Resources, Library Department.

Additional tasks:

•    edits and develops the homepage of the Library Institute in order to assure professional communication.
•    gives professional support for the National Document Supply System (ODR);
•    monitors the usage statistics of the multidisciplinary database package from EBSCO, licensed by the Ministry of National Resources and organises user trainings in Budapest and all over the country;
•    provides technical expertise and operates a number of electronic services: personal cadastre of librarians (, children’s literature database (, library buildings and equipment (,, security systems, preservation (;
•    maintains the Hungarian version of the Universal Decimal Classification and the thesaurus for public libraries (

R e s e a r c h   a n d   D e v e l o p m e n t   D e p a r t m e n t

Main tasks:

Tasks delegated by the Library Act:

•    edits and publishes the national library statistics (;
•    maintains the registry of open libraries (
;•    prepares and manages the national programmes for supporting library acquisitions;
•    processes and analyses the findings of supervisory reports conducted by libraries operating on a regional level (


•    carries out research activities concerning the operation of the national library system;
•    analyses domestic and international library trends;
•    performs research into reading and library use.

Continuous activities:

•    participates in the elaboration of legal regulations, guidelines and positions on library-political issues;
•    contributes to the elaboration and sharing of library guidelines, norms, standards and regulations;
•    offers consultancy and services in issues concerning library workflows;
•    disseminates the methods of quality assurance and quality development in the Hungarian library system;
•    operates databases and information services for libraries.

L i b r a r y   f o r   L i b r a r y   a n d   I n f o r m a t i o n   S c i e n c e

The Library provides services for practising librarians, library students and faculty, researchers, the management of librarianship and all those interested. It is a member of the National Document Supply System (ODR). Homepage:

Services and activities:

•    a collection of books and journals on library and information work, library and information science, librarianship, as well as on the history of books and libraries in a wide sense;
•    special collections (theses, dissertations, publicity materials, photos etc.);
•    online catalogue ( option: Könyvtártudományi Szakkönyvtár);
•    LIS documentation (HUMANUS database of Hungarian and international articles (, options: Library science=Könyvtártudomány or Book history=Könyvtörténet);
•    thesaurus of library and information science;
•    reference services (in the reading room, by phone, e-mail or normal mail);
•    value-added information services (reviews, state-of-the-art reports, materials for decision-making);
•    access to professional databases;
•    editing and publishing:
- a professional journal: Könyvtári Figyelő (
- an abstracting journal: Hungarian Library and Information Science Abstracts (
- the national special bibliography of librarianship: MAKSZAB
- the annual bibliography of book history;
•    practical training for LIS students;
•    management of the museum of the National Széchényi Library.


Library strategy 2008-2013

The areas of strategic development for the period 2008-2013 ( were determined in accordance with the objectives of the overall National Development Plan, which aims to increase the competitiveness and employability of citizens.

The key areas of the third library strategy, The Portal Programme, are the following ones:

•    Libraries should mediate all public information and data, and should provide access especially to the materials of national culture, within Hungary and in the areas over the Hungarian borders, (taking into account the needs of Hungarians living in the neighbouring countries)
•    Libraries should focus on users and provide for them access to this information and data, and to a substantial part of library services, independent of the user’s place of living, type of community, the library’s building and opening hours
•    Libraries should contribute to developing reading culture with new methods and programmes
•    Libraries should – through their community services and by supporting adult education – take an active part in improving the quality of life, in increasing employment and the competitiveness of individuals.

In the third strategy period 2008-2013 the European Union contributes a major sum for implementing comprehensive library development in Hungary. The government has approved, within the framework of the New Hungary Development Plan, two main programmes: the Social Infrastructure Operational Programme and the Social Renewal Operational Programme. The main objectives of both are very closely related to education and learning: to developing the infrastructure of library services in a co-ordinated manner, to providing quality education and to ensuring access for all.


Code of ethics of Hungarian librarians