Presentation of the library

The MEG Library presents itself on «Le sentier culturel. D’une bibliothèque à l’autre», a project of the City of Geneva designed to help people discover the city in a different way.

 

 

Missions

The main missions of the library are

  • Scientific and educational
    The MEG Library acquires and preserves documents for research and teaching. These documents are also used in the preparation of exhibitions.
  • Conservation and valorisation
    The MEG Library preserves and promotes a collection of rare and valuable books. These documents constitute the memory of the Museum and the discipline. It facilitates access to them through visits and by digitizing and restoring them.
  • Public service
    The MEG Library's collections are accessible to all audiences, including the youngest. Librarians are available to answer questions from users. In addition, the MEG Library answers questions from the Interroge Service (only in French). This service provides a personalised answer to your questions. Questions are asked online on a form. The answer is given within 72 hours with a reliable result and identified sources.

Space and equipment

A warm and lively reading room is freely available. This room offers about 40 workstations. It is completed by two mezzanines and a closed room where it is possible to isolate oneself. A paying photocopier allows you to make photocopies, printings and scans. Free WIFI access is available. Four fixed computers provide Internet and database access.

The Music Lounge occupies one of the mezzanines and offers a comfortable space equipped with four computers. They provide access to the Sound Archive, a database that allows listening to the International Archives of Folk Music (IAFM). This music collection contains 20'000 hours of music from the five continents.

The Pocket Theatre is a small room with about 12 seats where you can see films from the ethnographic collection or your own films.

All these areas are available without reservation within the limit of the number of places available.

History

The Museum of Ethnography in Geneva was founded in 1901. It was only in 1941 that the MEG Library was created. Since then, it brings together all the scientific documentation of the Museum.

In 1978, the City of Geneva acquired the collection of books and objects from the collector Georges Amoudruz. This made it possible to develop documentation devoted to the Alps.

Since 1985, thanks to an agreement between the Swiss Society of Americanists (SSA) and the Museum of Ethnography in Geneva, the MEG Library has been in charge of managing the documentation of this scientific society. This collection continues to grow thanks to donations from partner institutions of the SSA.