DELOS is a Network of Excellence on Digital Libraries partially
funded by the European Commission in the frame of the Information Society Technologies Programme. It started on 1st January 2004 and has a duration of 48 months. It presently has 55 members.
Digital Libraries represent a new infrastructure and environment that has been made possible by the integration and use of a number of IC technologies, the availability of digital content on a global scale and a strong demand from users who are now on-line. They are destined to become an essential part of the information infrastructure in the 21st century.
The DELOS vision for digital libraries is that they should enable any citizen to access all human knowledge any time and anywhere, in a friendly, multi-modal, efficient and effective way, by overcoming barriers of distance, language, and culture and by using multiple Internet-connected devices. The new generation digital libraries should not just be seen as static information repositories but as growing, interactively, and collaboratively used nuclei of what will be at some stage, a good part of human knowledge that depends as much on information as on communication.
The main objective of DELOS is thus to contribute to the development of the enabling technologies so that its vision for digital libraries may become reality. Digital Libraries is a multi-disciplinary field whose progress relies on the advancement of many enabling technologies. It is of crucial importance that the research activities that are carried out separately under these enabling technologies are integrated with research activities being conducted within the digital library field, and we consider that to be the main task of DELOS.
DELOS also aims at disseminating knowledge of digital library
technologies to many diverse application domains. It can provide specific user communities with access to advanced digital library technologies, services, testbeds, and the necessary expertise and knowledge to facilitate their take-up.