Our vision, mission and strategy provides the framework for the library’s work and for our numerous activities.

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  • Royal Danish Library is the national library of Denmark
  • Royal Danish Library works for knowledge and cultural heritage, now and in the future

The library maintains the following functions:

As a university library, we provide services that support research and education at Aarhus University, the IT University of Copenhagen, the University of Copenhagen and Roskilde University.

As a national library, we collect, preserve and provide access to Danish cultural heritage via texts, images and audio in both physical and digital form.

As main central for the Danish public libraries, we provide services that supplement the public libraries’ service offerings to citizens.

As a research institution, we increase knowledge about the Danish cultural heritage.


We have the following vision for the library's operation:

  • Royal Danish Library – for all, for real, for life
  • Royal Danish Library is a special library which promotes curiosity, knowledge and democracy


The overall strategy of the library is expressed in three short statements about how it should affect our society:

  • We contribute to an enlightened and democratic knowledge-based society
  • We contribute to refinement, education, research and innovation
  • We collect, preserve, research and communicate the Danish cultural heritage

Below is elaboration on the three statements with explanations as to why and how:

We contribute to an enlightened and democratic knowledge-based society

  • We provide access to physical and digital library collections, scientific information and data for citizens, researchers, students and businesses.
  • We are the national library of Denmark and promote open and equal access to cultural heritage of both Danish and foreign origin.
  • We develop and provide tools, expertise and professional guidance to be used by everyone.
  • We provide a framework for users to use critical thinking in relation to knowledge and data.

We contribute to courtesy, education, research and innovation

  • We create a framework for cultural refinement and lifelong learning.
  • We support studies, research and innovation by making materials, data and information accessible, and by facilitating a modern and inspiring study environment for everyone. 
  • We boost the users’ qualifications as well as their knowledge of the library's collections by offering professional and qualified education and guidance.
  • We encourage standards for proper academic practice and we support research and knowledge creation at Danish universities and educational institutions.

We collect, preserve, research and communicate the Danish cultural heritage

  • We preserve the past, collect the present and enrich the future, and in that way we create value for both current and future users.
  • We preserve and give access to unique cultural heritage collections and information about these.
  • Through our work, we open the door to Denmark's past and help position Denmark in an international context.
  • We oversee and communicate Danish cultural heritage as well as cultural heritage of relevance to Denmark – thus, we support our users' identity development and thereby boost cultural solidarity.

The common thread: digital transformation and sustainability

In order to deliver the desired effect – an enlightened and democratic knowledge-based society – the library must complete a number of activities. The goals outlined in the framework agreement as well as other strategic efforts will be key activities. More goals will follow as user needs change and new terms and opportunities arise. The guiding principle for these will be that they contribute to digital transformation and increased sustainability.

New and rapidly changing digital technology creates new expectations, which will affect the way we use technology to create the value our citizens rightly expect. New skill sets will be needed at all levels of the library, for co-operation both internally and externally, and for new organizational structures. And all this must be done in a sustainable way – using as few resources as possible - and in a way that supports climate change mitigation.

The strategy has been prepared in a process involving the various departments of the library as well as many employees and managers. The result is summarized in a broad strategy relating to citizens, students, researchers, public libraries and collaborative partners.