Public libraries of large French and foreign towns and cities: documentary policies

For the Observatoire permanent de la lecture publique à Paris (OPLPP), greater knowledge of the documentary policies of the public libraries of great towns and cities has become a necessity. Drawing on the results of an enquiry carried out within the Intamel (INTernational Association of MEtropolitan Libraries), the author analyses on the one hand the organisation and the level of activity of the metropolitan networks of libraries, and on the other hand the principles of their documentary policy and the procedures for carrying this out. The progress in this area of North American, Scandinavian and Asian public libraries becomes apparent. The results of the Intamel enquiry will undoubtedly give food for thought to member institutions of the OPLPP and Parisian municipal libraries.