National Library of Indonesia

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Perpustakaan Nasional Republik Indonesia
(National Library of Indonesia)
Perpustakaan Nasional Republik Indonesia insignia.svg
National Library of Indonesia (Salemba branch).jpg
National library building in Salemba, Jakarta
Established 17 May 1980[1]
Location Jakarta, Indonesia
Coordinates 6°11′54.7″S 106°51′7.5″E / 6.198528°S 106.852083°E / -6.198528; 106.852083
Other information
Director Sri Sularsih[2]

The National Library of Indonesia (Indonesian: Perpustakaan Nasional Republik Indonesia, PNRI) is the legal deposit library of Indonesia. It serves primarily as a humanities library alongside several others holding national responsibilities for science and agriculture. The national library was established in 1980 through a decree of the Ministry of Education and Culture and the consolidation of four different libraries. It maintains the status of a non-departmental government institution and is responsible to the President of Indonesia. The earliest collections originated from the library of the National Museum, opened in 1868 and formerly operated by the Royal Batavian Society of Arts and Sciences. A new library building was opened in 1988 with financial support from Madam Tien Suharto.



Museum of the Royal Batavian Society of Arts and Sciences, now the National Museum of Indonesia, c. 1875–1885

The origins of the national library date back to the 1778 foundation of the Royal Batavian Society of Arts and Sciences, the first of its kind in Asia. Through its promotion of scholarship in the Dutch East Indies, the society created numerous publications and accumulated a number of collections, including establishing a library. After increasing its collections during the first half of the 19th century, the society and its library moved in 1868 to a new location at the current National Museum at Merdeka Square. Attempts to divert some collections to the new Royal Netherlands Institute of Southeast Asian and Caribbean Studies (KITLV) were resisted by members. Between 1846 and 1920, the library's collection grew from 1,115 items to over 100,000.[3]

The Society's library survived the years of conflict during and following World War II.[4] Japanese forces occupying Indonesia during the war years were impressed by the number Japanese scholars in the society and did not interfere with the affairs of the museum. Because authorities also upheld the library's powers of legal deposit, it holds a substantial collection of official wartime publication. Following independence, the society was renamed the Indonesian Institute of Culture (Lembaga Kebudayaan Indonesia) before being dissolved in 1962. The library was then placed under the museum's jurisdiction.[5]

National library[edit]

Library collection of the Royal Batavian Society of Arts and Sciences, c. 1896

Although a plan for a national library was included in the 1961 First National Development Plan, it was not sustained in the following years. In 1973, Mastini Hardjoprakoso, an employee of the National Museum library, developed a concept for the national library, but it was not immediately adopted by the Ministry of Education and Culture. However, the plan caught the attention of the National Development Planning Agency (Bappenas) and other information services. When a new culture director took office in 1978, the ministry finally gave its support for the project. Funding for the library was also provided by Madam Tien Suharto, who was impressed by a 1968 exhibition of colonial and national newspapers at the National Museum.[5]

The National Library of Indonesia was created through a 1980 decree by the Minister of Education and Culture Daoed Joesoef.[1][6] Four libraries were consolidated in the process: two departments of the Library Development Centre (the Library of Political and Social History, founded in 1952, and the Department of Bibliography and Deposits, founded in 1953); the library of the Jakarta regional office of the Ministry of Education and Culture, founded in 1953; and the library of the National Museum. In addition to the establishment of a national library system, the decree granted the library powers of legal deposit.[7] The library was placed under the jurisdiction of the Directorate General for Culture within the ministry.[1] The new library building opened in 1988.[5]

Under Presidential Decree 11 of (6 March) 1989, the National Library fully subsumed the assets of the Library Development Centre and became a non-departmental government institution. It no longer reports to the ministry and is responsible to the President of Indonesia through the State Secretariat.[1][8] The library's operations were once again revised through a 1997 decree in order to meet the needs of globalization.[1]


The library serves the entire Indonesian people and is primarily a humanities library. National responsibility for science belongs to the Centre for Scientific Documentation and Information (Pusat Dokumentasi dan Informasi Ilmiah). The Centre for Agricultural Library and Technology Dissemination (Pusat Perpustakaan dan Penyebaran Teknologi Pertanian), formerly part of the Bogor Botanical Gardens, holds the responsibility for an agriculture library.[5] Other libraries of national importance include the library of the Bandung Institute of Technology and the University of Indonesia medical faculty library.[9]

Under the national library, Indonesia began its own International Standard Book Number and Cataloging in Publication programs. The library maintains bibliographies of the state ideology Pancasila and Javanese manuscripts. It also develops an independent computer housekeeping system and implements the MARC standards. Both the United States Library of Congress and the National Library of Australia maintain regional offices in Jakarta.[5]

Library system[edit]

The 1980 ministerial decree also outlined a library system for the country. Aside from the national library, the decree established libraries at the provincial and other administrative levels. It outlined plans for an integrated system of school, academic/university, and mobile libraries.[6]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d e Saputro 2005
  2. ^ "Mendiknas Lantik Dirjen Dikti dan Kepala Perpustakaan Nasional" (in Indonesian). Ministry of Communication and Information. Public Information Agency. 15 June 2010. Archived from the original on 4 July 2010. Retrieved 4 July 2010. 
  3. ^ Massil 2001, p. 520
  4. ^ Massil 1994, p. 274
  5. ^ a b c d e Massil 2001, p. 521
  6. ^ a b Hardjoprakoso 1995, p. 222
  7. ^ Massil 2001, p. 519
  8. ^ Hardjoprakoso 1995, p. 223
  9. ^ Massil 1994, p. 275


External links[edit]