Intercommunality and libraries: the example of the new towns

The creation of the "new towns" has allowed the principles of intercommunality to be tested. These principles, now extended, which are laid down in the law of 12 July 1999, enable intercommunal structures to be put in place, which are rather similar to the structures of the new towns themselves. With the likelihood that they will be responsible for culture, the public institutions of intercommunal cooperation will have to organise themselves for managing libraries in quite a different way. If the way in which the libraries in the "new towns" are organised differs considerably according to their context and history, it does not necessarily constitute a model, but it does allow a glimpse of the different possibilities offered by intercommunality. The changes that will follow the establishment of structures with an intercommunal purpose will have to be prepared for, no matter what the necessarily diverse aspects of the cultural policies that emerge may be.