Information exchange the world over increasingly occurs in digital format. Where once libraries and archives dealt with physical books, newspapers and manuscripts, we now operate in an environment that is increasingly digital. E-books and e-newspapers now exist alongside physical books and newspapers, and libraries and archives have to find a way to collect, preserve and provide access to this new digital heritage material.

As with any emerging format, in a Library or Archives context there can sometimes be differing interpretations as to what exactly constitutes Born Digital material, but broadly speaking Born Digital material is material that has its origins (is born) in digital format only.

This type of material can include but is not limited to websites, e-mails, photographs, e-publications, film, and databases. At present the National Library of Ireland engages in archiving web sites of Irish interest (see our Web Archive page for more information).

In addition to providing digital access to physical material from our own collections through our digitisation programme, we subscribe to electronic resources to provide readers with free access to a rich variety of digital content held elsewhere (see the eResources section for a full list of resources currently available).

'The Gate Theatre', Dublin, 1934. Illustrations by M. MacLiammóir (Ir3919h3).
'The Gate Theatre', Dublin, 1934. Illustrations by M. MacLiammóir (Ir3919h3).
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