An outline of the history of Hungarian library journals. Part 1. (1876-1946)


The article surveys technical literature from the point of view of librarianship and library policy. Part 1. covers the period between 1876, the issue of Magyar Könyvszemle (Hungarian Book Review), and 1946. In other countries the issue, of a journal in the field of librarianship was usually followed by the foundation of the library association together with the start of the training of librarians. In Hungary the publication of journals came first, more or less in the same period as foreign periodicals, indicating the level of Hungarian science and librarianship as well. Múzeumi és Könyvtári Értesítő (Bulletin of Museums and Libraries) was started in the first years of the century, and was followed by Könyvtári Szemle (Library Review). The situation after the war and the revolutions was favourable neither for library journals, nor for librarianship. The lack of financial resources had constantly presented problems, and lead to the ceasing of journals. By the 1930s after a few years suspension – only Hungarian Book Review was left. The reorganised journal was bound to the Association of Hungarian Librarians and Archivists, formed in 1935. The traditional profile of Hungarian Book Review, focusing on the history of books and culture, was transformed, and new topics were involved (press history, documentation, classification, cataloguing, public libraries, local history collections, etc.). The successful period of the journal, starting in 1937, proved that Hungarian librarianship had become more articulate, and some important institutions emerged. In 1944-45 the journal existed still, but from 1947 on its chances of survival diminished with political changes and the lack of money. After the disappearance of Hungarian Book Review, Hungarian librarianship was left without an organ for some years.
(Pp. 585-596)

25 years of the English language-abstracting journal of Hungarian librarianship

FEIMER Ágnes – RÁCZ Ágnes

Documentation in librarianship, based on the collection of the Special Library of Librarianship was one of the most important tasks of the Centre for Library Science and Methodology founded in 1959. The threefold system of information on librarianship in Hungary had developed by the early 70s: it gave a complete coverage of Hungarian library literature (A Magyar Könyvtári Szakirodalom Bibliográfiája = Bibliography of Hungarian Library Literature); it offered abstracts of a selection of foreign articles in librarianship (Könyvtári és Dokumentációs Szakirodalom = Library and Documentation Literature, today „From foreign journals” in Könyvtári Figyelő). The third branch was information on Hungarian librarianship for foreign experts. In the 1960s this role was performed by the bibliography entitled „Gyorstájékoztató a magyar könyvtártudományi irodalomról” with titles and annotations translated into English, German and Russian. Later more exhausting abstracts replaced annotations presenting Hungarian specialities for foreigners better. In 1972, a vivid year in international librarianship (IFLA conference in Budapest, FID congress, Hungarian-Soviet seminar in Budapest), the abstracting journal entitled Hungarian Library and Information Science Abstracts (HLISA) was started in order to inform foreign colleagues of Hungarian achievements. 2637 abstracts have been included in the journal for 25 years, about 10% of all the books and articles issued. Annually 100-120 journal articles and monographs were processed, and a selection of them was abstracted as well. Subject headings enhance retrieval. Once a year the issues are supplemented by an alphabetic and subject index. The publication has been edited electronically since 1990. The abstracting journal is an invaluable exchange material for the special library’s acquisition. It is sent to 220 institutions in 53 countries. It also contributes to the information supply of foreign librarians visiting the national library.
(Pp. 597-603)

Hungarian journals of librarianship in library and information science databases


The author has analysed the occurrence of two Hungarian national journals Tudományos és Műszaki Tájékoztatás (TMT, Scientific and Technical Information) and Könyvtári Figyelő (KF, Library Review) in the databases ISA (Information Science Abstracts) and LISA (Library Information Science Abstracts). In the 1970s ISA used to cover the abstracts of these journals regularly. Articles of KF had been left our since 1979, and those of TMT have been neglected since

-1989. What is more, no Hungarian language article was included. The occurrence of the two journals is somewhat better in LISA. LISA contained 1545 Hungarian entries in the 1990s, of which 604 came from TMT, 533 from KF, and the rest from other resources. In the 1980s topics interesting at an international level were preferred (such as information science, automation, management). In the 1990s abstracts of the major articles were in fact included without selection.
(Pp. 604-510)

Possibilities of organisational development in county libraries

BARLAI Róbert – CSAPÓ Edit

The structure of the Hungarian public library system has followed the pattern established in the 1950s up till now. Libraries are lead by one manager with a deputy and an economic leader. Later in the integrated organisation, suggested to libraries by the Centre for Library Science and Methodology, professional duties were carried out by better-trained staff in a simultaneous system. Only those in leading positions could get higher salary, therefore the organisation was divided into subunits, groups with group leaders managing them. First these units comprised no more than 10°~ of the organisations. By now they represent 30%. As market economy emerged, existing structures had to be reviewed from the point of view of being economical and effective. The authors have carried out investigations with organisation developmental methods, revealing hidden human relations, the innovative capacity of the organisation, the involvement of staff, and the performance of the management in five county libraries. Conflicts within the organisation were analysed by the FITO-B test, and factors reducing the effectiveness of

work was discussed in small groups. There was not any library in which reforms had been initiated by the staff or middle management, and top managers induced changes only exceptionally. The survey has shown that managers do not implement the achievements of modern management theory, and the delegation of authority is only formal. Top managers are responsible for the establishment of organisational strategies, and are responsible not only for the maintenance of external relations but also for internal professional operation as well.
(Pp. 611-622)

Strategic plan of the Pécs University Library


For the past ten years the number of students at Pécs University increased with 50%, that of university library staff decreased with 15-205, and the acquisition budget of the central library became half of what it had been. In such a situation it is important to reformulate the goals. Pécs University is determined to become one of the three leading universities of Hungary. It is impossible without the increase of the level of the university library. The library needs a modern integrated system in order to be able to perform its tasks as a major library collection of the Trans-Danube region. It would improve the book provision of faculties if a central storage library were organised. The library is dissected: of six units four perform independent processing. To speed up of retrospective cataloguing; the extension of the computer network, professional training and further training are indispensable. Foreign examples and relations help a lot in the development, however, it remains an illusion without financial support.
(Pp. 623-629)

Our libraries in the electronic and networked world

KOKAS Károly

Based on a survey of the computerisation of Hungarian libraries, possible developments are outlined, while the difficulties of automation emerging now are also mentioned. For the past 4-5 years integrated systems appreciated in the international market have appeared in Hungary. Support from the National Information Infrastructure program (among others) has also improved the conditions of computerisation of libraries. Difficulties: the internal structure of the library to be computerised has to be considered again, and the purchase of hardware and software has to be prepared in a manner different from former experiences. Integrated systems have to match the network structure of their wider environment as well. Cooperation may take the form of shared cataloguing, central record distribution, or a national union catalogue named „közelkat” being developed. (Today catalogues of Voyager can be searched.) A national CD-ROM network has to be developed. The Hungarian Electronic Library is working; INTERNET is used extensively. However, the support of the Hungarian Homepage required more attention from librarians. It is positive that there have been considerable developments in libraries so far as network installation and attachment to international systems are conshould be joined in a national information system in the future.
(Pp. 630-636)

Gutenberg on the superhighway


Thinking of the future of books and libraries in the age of electronic data storage it can be assumed that the fate of paper-based, printed media will be varied. An increasing amount of information in sciences, technology and economics will appear in digitised form, however in the case of social sciences and literature it is difficult to imagine a piece of philosophy or a drama by Shakespeare to be read on a CD-ROM. Where the digitised form proves to be suitable, it will replace its printed ancestors. It is not to be worried about. What is frightening is the spread of illiteracy characterising highly developed countries. The more visual effects (such as television, video, computers) youngsters are exposed to, the less they read, thus reading will become more and more difficult for them, therefore they require stronger and stronger visual stimuli. The librarian, able to find her way through the bulk of computerised information, and capable of structuring these pieces of information, will always be needed.
(Pp. 637-642)

Contribution to the article of Miklós Bényei in the previous issue of Könyvtári Figyelő


(Pp. 643-645)


BORGMAN, Christine: Will the global information infrastructure be the library of the future? Central and Eastern Europe as a case example

(Transl.: Hegyközi Ilona)

(Pp. 647-656.)


HORCHLER, Gabor: Reorganisation of cataloguing at the Library of Congress and the work of the Hungarian Swat team.

(Transl.: Mándy Gábor)

(Pp. 657-662.)


DEBRECZENI Zsuzsa: The New York Reference and Research Library Service (METRO)

(Pp. 663-665.)


KOLTAY Tibor: National library functions and university libraries in Denmark. Experiences of a study tour.

(Pp. 666-669.)


BÁNKESZI Lajosné: Donators in the digital age

(Pp. 670-671.)


Book reviews
Guidelines for legislation for national library services.

LOR, Peter: Guidelines for legislation for national library services. Provisional version.

(Rev.: Tóth Erzsébet)

(Pp. 673-674.)


A critical look on children’s books.

Evaluating children’s books: A critical look: Aesthetic, social and political aspects of analysing and using children’s books. Ed. Betsy Heame, Roger Sutton.

(Rev.: Kovács Katalin)

(Pp. 675-677.)


Books and their interpretations.

KAMARÁS István: Olvasatok

(Rev.: W. Péterfi Rita)

(Pp. 677-678.)


Selected accession list of the library Science Library

(Pp. 679-683.)