Because of Dutch government funding cuts and the subsequent major reorganization at KIT, the department Information & Library Services (ILS), including the KIT Library, ceases all information and library operations.
Consequently, ILS has to stop with its tailor-made information services, as well its training and advisory services, once designed to strengthen the role of information management for development in many low and middle income countries. Furthermore, most information products (KIT Portals and Dossiers) are no longer maintained and/or accessible for the public.
The KIT Library was forced to close down as of Agustus 1, 2013. Since then, the public has no longer access to KIT's library collection, the external scientific databases, the e-journals, the Reading Room, the Map Room and the (digital) catalogue. The (colonial) maps can not be consulted anymore and the heritage site with Dutch digitized colonial heritage is no longer available.
The KIT Library collection will be divided. The colonial heritage collection (pre-1950) and the map collection, including the colonial maps and contemporary maps, will go to the library of the Universitey of Leiden. Approximately 10% of the post-1950 library collection, encapsulating the medical components, is to be taken on by a Dutch foundation. Other parties have also expressed an interest in some of the collection and a number of Dutch institutions seem to be willing to take on a section of the collection in order to complement their existing collections.
The major part of the KIT Library collection will go to Egypt. The Bibliotheca Alexandrina in Alexandria, Egypt wants to take over 700,000 documents. Prof. Ismail Serageldin, Director of the oldest scientific library on earth, has signed a Memorandum of Understanding at KIT in Amsterdam that regulates the transition of the majority of the collection, only the Dutch part (about 2.5%) remains.
KIT's Knowledge departments remain operational (visit our home page))
KIT’s knowledge departments in the fields of sustainable economic development, gender, health and education, biomedical research, intercultural communication and management will continue operating. These departments aim to be able to function without any base funding from the government as from 2016.