Airport Library Schiphol

Airport Library Schiphol

For most people, waiting in airports is probably not their favorite pastime. Schiphol Airport Amsterdam is known for its efforts to make waiting more enjoyable and to ease the discomforts connected to delays. There are already plenty of ways to kill time, including an innovative mini-Rijksmuseum.

Recently, the airport has added yet another option for literary travelers – a library. It is not a lending library – for that, time is, after all, usually too short. The library is a reference library. The airport also calls this a sitting area with extra value. “The focus of the multimedia collection is primarily on Dutch culture. It offers the millions of transfer passengers, who are only in the Netherlands to change flights, a chance to get an impression of the culture of our country. Initially the service of Airport Library offers the following:

  • Translated Dutch fiction in nearly thirty languages
  • The books that are annually chosen as the Best Designed Dutch Books
  • Photo books, photo shows and videos that reflect Dutch culture
  • Music of Dutch musicians”

Airport Library is for reading, watching and listening on the spot. People who wish to take something with them can use the TankU-downloadscreen. The library does offer a few downloadable movies that you can transfer to your mobile phone (or, one assumes, to an iPod) via Bluetooth for later viewing. Accordingly, the library is also about Dutch cultural diplomacy and nation branding.

Thus, Airport Library also offers highlights in Dutch architecture, visual arts, design, fashion and history. Special attention is given to the capital Amsterdam.

Airport Library is entirely based on self-service. Visitors can easily find their way and feel right at home in this unique public library.

TWIL #19: Dick van Tol (Schiphol Airport Library) and Kai Ekholm (National Librarian Finland) from Jaap van de Geer on Vimeo.

Throughout the world, libraries are working with innovative breakthroughs of their services, and a more flexible presence in the “public space” is an emerging strategy for example pursued by the Danish Library Innovation initiative “Digital Trendspotting”.

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