The ZLB (Berlin Central & Regional Library) Foundation was established as a legal foundation under public law on 1 October 1995, by virtue of an act dated 25 September 1995. The foundation includes the Amerika-Gedenkbibliothek (America Memorial Library) and Berliner Stadtbibliothek (Berlin City Library). Both establishments were united at an organisational and structural level on 1 February 1996. And the Berliner Gesamtkatalog (Berlin General Catalogue) and Senatsbibliothek Berlin (Berlin Senate Library) joined the foundation on 1 January 2005.
The ZLB Foundation is the central public library for the Federal State of Berlin, and performs state-library tasks.
As a regional and universal library, its collections help preserve Berlin’s cultural heritage, and make this accessible to the public. This role sees the ZLB co-ordinate with archives and other libraries in Berlin. It is committed to cultural diversity, and is particularly responsible for supplying user-oriented literature and information for tertiary education outside of Berlin’s universities. It acts as a city-wide centre of innovation for media and library matters.
The foundation is also responsible for
- Rendering central library services in Berlin,
- Ensuring library information is supplied to the Berliner Verwaltung (Berlin’s city administration),
- Participating in nationwide community library tasks.