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Microform Collection

A library within a library, it contains material relevant to all topics of research at the Institute.

The EUI Library has a sizable collection of microforms. Since it was set up in 1976 much out-of-print and archival material has been acquired in microform (the digital library was still a thing of the future!).

Today the collection contains more than 250,000 documents, and it is still growing even though much more material is now accessible electronically.

Archival Documents

Since 1976, the Library has bought a selected number of archival documents pertinent to ongoing research projects in the History Department at the Institute. They concern post-1945 European construction, the Portuguese Inquisition, European Expansion from the 16th Century onwards and gender studies.


The periodicals collection on microform complements that on paper. It is fully catalogued and the location of all microform issues is given in the Library Catalogue

It falls roughly into the following categories:


Considerable holdings of the back-years of scholarly journals are held in microform although more and more titles are becoming available in digital format.


The permanent newspaper archive of the Library is kept on microfilm, this being still the safest medium for long-term storage.

The Library offers its users some of the major European newspapers from 1945 onwards for which a microfilm edition exists and for which indexes are available. Where the absence of indexes would mean that there would be no coverage for a Member State of the European Union one newspaper for that country is nevertheless included in the archive.

Italian newspapers are accessible elsewhere in Florence, and are excluded. In addition, two major American newspapers (New York Times, Wall Street Journal) were purchased as well as several runs of newspapers pre-dating 1945.

International Organisation Publications

Of particular value are the extensive back runs of United Nations documents (General Assembly and Security Council official records, the legislative series) and European Union documents (Official Journal in the languages of all Member States).
Much of this material is now being published in digital format, notably on CD-ROM.

National Government Publications

Current subscriptions include the Parliamentary debates of France, Germany and the UK, the official journals of France, Spain and Belgium, and the Parliamentary Papers of the UK (i.e. House of Commons Command Papers, Papers and Bills). There are also back runs of the Parliamentary debates for the Netherlands, Denmark and Austria and the official journals for the Netherlands and Luxembourg.

Statistical Publications

A considerable amount of material is made available in commercially published statistical collections (e.g. International Population Census' Publications) or collections of a more generic nature but of equal importance (The Controller's Library Collection of HMSO Publications, 1922-77).

Not all this material is catalogued at the level of the individual titles contained in the collection. In those cases where there is a paper edition in the Library, then the information relating to the microfiche edition is included in the relative catalogue record. (e.g. retrospective runs of the annual statistical yearbooks which form part of the microfiche collection "European Official Statistical Serials, 1841-1984").

This is not always the case for other larger and more complex collections where there is only a generic, not very meaningful title in the Library's catalogue. For the moment in-depth access to this material is limited to printed bibliographies compiled to aid the use of the collections. They are housed in the Microforms Room. Users are urged to consult them and find the treasures within!


Specialised Collections

This category of material is the richest in content but certainly the least exploited. As with the statistical collections, none of the material (with the exception of the Goldsmiths'- Kress Library of Economic Literature) has been catalogued at individual title level, so the user has to rely on the printed bibliographies compiled to aid consultation. These are available in the Microforms consultation room.

See in particular:

  • The Controller's Library Collection of HMSO Publications. HMSO or Her Majesty's Stationery Office is the official publisher of the British Government. This collection contains all HMSO publications, parliamentary and non-parliamentary, House of Commons and House of Lords for the years 1922-1977.
  • League of Nations Documents and Serial Publications 1919-1946
  • French language collections including Babeuf et le babouvisme, La condition ouvriere en France au 19e siecle, Encyclopedie by D. Diderot, Le Rousseauisme.
  • There is also the extensive series relating to British political parties including Britain and Europe since 1945.



Page last updated on 15 February 2021

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