Sofia Declaration “Europe needs its Libraries – Heritage and Knowledge for a Stronger EU”

EBLIDA & BLIA, with the support of IFLA, organised a round-table discussion Copyright and Libraries and published the Sofia Declaration "Europe needs its Libraries - Heritage and Knowledge for a Stronger EU".


Taking the opportunity of the Bulgarian Presidency, EBLIDA and BLIA with the participation of IFLA, organised a round table discussion Copyright and Libraries in Sofia (BG) on 26 February 2018.

The discussion opened with a video message from Commissioner for Digital Economy and Society Mariya Gabriel on the importance of libraries.

The first panel Libraries and the copyright debate: from local to global moderated by Vincent Bonnet (EBLIDA), featured presentations from :

  • Tereza Trencheva (ULSIT): Bulgarian Copyright and related rights law: a short overview for libraries
  • Vincent Bonnet (EBLIDA Director):  European Copyright Reforms – Seven Ways to Promote Innovation, Creativity and Heritage
  • Stephen Wyber (IFLA Manager Policy and Advocacy) : Libraries Promote Culture, Social Cohesion, Digital Empowerment
  • the view of Mr. Emil Radev, MEP and member of the JURI Committee on the DSM Directive

Panel participants from left to right: T. Trencheva, V. Bonnet, S. Wyber, E. Radev

The panel was followed by an interactive debate with the room.

The Commission’s view were provided a bit later (due to a flight delay) with the presentation of Mr. Manuel Mateo Goyеt on Modernization of the Eu Copyright Framework

The second panel Library professionals and Copyright literacy, best practices in Bulgaria and Europe moderated by Tereza Trencheva (ULSIT) featured presentations from:

  • Tania Todorova (ULSIT): A multinational study on Copyright literacy of specialists from libraries and other cultural institutions
  • Jane Secker and Chris Morrison (UK):  UK Copyright literacy and the role for library and information professionals (video message)
  • Marian Encheva (ULSIT): Information literacy of humanities students in Europe: a game-based learning approach for avoiding fake content (NAVIGATE project)


In conclusion of the two panels, EBLIDA Director presented the joint Sofia Declaration Europe Needs its Libraries – Heritage and Knowledge for a Stronger EU calling on Europe’s governments and institutions to:

  • embed culture in the next Multiannual Financial Framework, ensuring that preservation and promotion of documentary cultural heritage, in analogue and digital form, is duly supported through both budgets and laws.
  • pass a copyright reform that is fit for the modern age, which supports the learners, creators and innovators of the future, not the market failures of the past. It must promote innovative, community-focused library services which enable all to benefit from access to information.
  • recognise the potential of libraries as skills providers, notably concerning digital, media and information literacy, and ensure they participate fully and effectively in European social and regional development initiatives.


The joint declaration is supported by EBLIDA, BLIA and IFLA.

Read the full declaration in English and български


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Contact with the proposer of Sofia Declaration "Europe needs its Libraries - Heritage and Knowledge for a Stronger EU" project