Initial Objectives (2007)


swissbib is a "Library 2.0" generation metacatalog of Swiss university libraries and the Swiss National Library.


swissbib will implement the highlights of new "Library 2.0" technologies such as

  • easy and user friendly retrieval, navigation and personalization

  • fast and high-performance search, using modern search engine technology

  • excellent ranking of search results

  • clustering of hits, grouping similar works and subjects

  • context sensitive links to electronic resources

  • recommend function

  • techniques of social computing, such as tagging and book reviews


swissbib will comprise the following dataset:

  • catalogs of Swiss universities and academic library consortia

  • catalogs of the Swiss National Library

  • metadata of the Swiss universities' document repositories

  • metadata of academic E-archiving projects in Switzerland

  • data for catalog enrichment (abstracts and indexes)



In a national context, swissbib should provide these services:

  • full multilingualism: German, French, Italian, English

  • transparent access to all electronic resources licensed to Swiss universities

  • complete overview of library holdings and an efficient interface to local library systems: All print media reported in swissbib can be ordered and delivered within 1 to 2 days within Switzerland.

  • optimal utilization of all methods used in Swiss university libraries for subject indexing and classification

  • optional filtering of results by regional, language or content criteria

swissbib should be able to replace largely the online catalogs of IDS, RERO, and the Swiss National Library. swissbib can and should be superior to international products of similar design, such as the „Dreiländerkatalog“ (HBZ) or OCLC's „WorldCat“. Offering a direct access to holdings, swissbib will be the first choice for retrieving scientific information in Switzerland.

swissbib will implement the following objectives of the programme:

  • a central entry point for searching, finding, and accessing scientific information in Switzerland

  • a consistent user interface for searches spanning all Swiss university libraries

  • an interface to other national services: E-Archives, institutional repositories, document delivery

  • ease of personalization

  • API to shared authentification, authorization, and rights management ("Single SignOn")

  • API to digital content licensed to Swiss universities

  • API to document repositories of national universities and library consortia



A main objective of the project is to implement its different components in a modular manner.

Each layer of the application should operate independent of other layers, and communication between layers should be secured with proven and well documented protocols or interfaces.


The implementation of swissbib can rely on existent or almost fully developed technologies:

  • a growing range of readily available software solutions either commercial or open source

based on core technologies or using concepts like:

  • The OAI-PMH protocol for a regular harvesting of metadata

  • Algorithms for the deduplication of bibliographic records

  • FRBR inspired clustering” by OCLC to identify and group similar works

  • various search engine technologies with their respective strengths