A defence and illustration of collections

Collections still have a bright future in libraries. Printed material has not stopped developing because of advances in digital technology and their superiority in terms of material conservation means that they represent a long-term asset for libraries. Digital documents certainly raise new problems, but libraries can remain key players in building them up into collections, providing access and bringing hundreds of years of accumulated know-how to managing them, as the role of libraries has shifted over the centuries from safeguarding collections to providing democratic access to them.