The digitisation of cultural heritage is one of the cultural priorities of the French Presidency of the Council of the European Union. Digitisation, making cultural material from Member States available on line, and digital preservation are essential for enhancing the promotion of cultural heritage, stimulating the creation of content and fostering new on-line services. They contribute to the democratisation of access to culture and to the development of the information society and the knowledge economy.
The year 2008 is an important stage in the construction of the European digital library. At the end of 2008, the Europeana prototype will provide a multilingual access point to two million works from all types of heritages spread across Europe.
The aim of this conference is to present the Europeana prototype to a large professional audience. A comprehensive overview of achievements within the EU is also on the agenda: MICHAEL (a multilingual inventory of European cultural heritage), national and thematic portals, networking of digital contents in all areas of heritage (archives, libraries, museums, audiovisual, architectural heritage, etc.), new uses and new services for the public, and models for partnerships between the public and private sectors.