Was bei uns hinter den Kulissen passiert

Are you looking for a really boring office job? We have that too! Otherwise, however, it is very likely that as an SLUB employee you will have to deal with stressed students, valuable old prints or manuscripts, work with large equipment, move chairs, serve champagne, freeze in the climate chamber or in the archive, or put away yoga mats at the end of the day.

In order to meet these challenges, about 350 people with the most diverse professional backgrounds work together in an interdisciplinary way. These activities in particular play an important role:

Acquire, license and publish

A library never stands still. We provide our users with all important information. Whether it's printed books or e-journals and databases available online - this is where we really push the envelope. Each of our more than eight million media is conscientiously catalogued, systematised and made available via the catalogue. And we are turning the supply of scientific literature on its head by funding open access publications. So that in future everyone around the planet can learn, research and teach. Just like that and without restriction.

Collect and archive

Collecting makes you happy. And sharing this happiness with library users is doubly nice! After all, collecting and preserving are the cornerstones of every library. In its function as a state library, the SLUB archives, among other things, almost all media about Saxony as well as publications published in Saxony that are subject to delivery. However, non-Saxon items are also preserved: ancient papyri, clay cones, precious medieval manuscripts on parchment, music, maps, graphics and the archive of photographers. Precious items such as the Codex Dresdensis, one of four surviving Mayan manuscripts, are regularly exhibited in our book museum.

Restoration and conservation

We preserve the knowledge of yesterday and today for the world of tomorrow - analogue and digital. While our IT department develops data formats for efficient long-term archiving for this purpose, for our restoration department this means, for example, making mould- and water-damaged parchments of medieval manuscripts readable again with the help of the latest technologies. Our library is also affiliated with the State Office for Conservation of the Saxon State Ministry of Science, Culture and Tourism (SMWK), which plans and carries out large-scale projects such as the mass deacidification of paper in accordance with the state programme.

Oh, and for the long journeys between the climate chamber and the storage room with Japanese paper and parchment powder, our colleagues in the conservation department have a scooter.

Programming, development and administration

Blueprints? Not with us! Thanks to its own software development, the Information Technology department ensures every day that every requirement of the library's various services receives its tailor-made solution. This ranges from the digitisation of objects and media to their provision and long-term storage. And of course the heart of the library, the catalogue, is also one hundred percent made by SLUB-IT.

Big meets small: With about 50 colleagues, IT is the third largest department at SLUB - with its own small computer centre. More information about our IT department can be found here.


What many users do not know: as an academic library, the SLUB itself actively conducts research. Partly as DFG-funded projects and financed by third-party funds, it is our concern to design a transparent research process and to carry the results out into the world. In doing so, the scientific investigations are by no means limited to a specific field of research: Visual arts, mobility and transport research or musicology - the individual subject information services (FID) provide the scientific community with the latest information and appropriate research tools. Open Access, of course.


Everyone is talking about it - we are driving it forward: digitisation. With the aim of making all our knowledge treasures easily available online, the SLUB coordinates the State Digitisation Programme for Science and Culture of the Free State of Saxony. Here, important written material from Saxony is made available for teaching and research as well as for the general public. Using open source technology and new developments in the field of text and layout recognition, a wide variety of media types are made available here. The same applies to the Dresden Digitisation Centre.

Counselling, mediation and schools

He who asks, wins! How can I use the 3D printer to print a model for my architecture seminar? How do I organise the sources for my Bachelor thesis? What do I do when I have writer's block? Where can I find literature on machining - and is it exciting? What exactly is Open Science? You can ask us anything. We provide the answers at the counter, the knowledge bar, in the Makerspace or in the TextLab, in personal discussions, training courses and workshops, and at events.

The number one most frequently asked question at the service desk is probably "Can I renew my book?" We don't know that either, but of course we are happy to extend the loan period!

And what else?

Under the motto "People make libraries", we bring people together as a third place that is neither entirely private nor entirely dedicated to work. And how do we do that? The magic word is communication: internally, but above all also externally. With events, exhibitions, workshops, via social media, our chat, on the phone or face-to-face. Of course, all this is only possible because we also have an administrative department, a technical service, building officers, a personnel team, a budget team and a controlling team!