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Legal deposit material: Legal deposit activity

National cultural materials

Oulu University Library is one of the six legal deposit libraries in Finland. The library's extensive and comprehensive collections of Finnish publications help to facilitate the multi-disciplinary research conducted in Northern Finland.

Legal deposit activity is based on the Act on Collecting and Preserving Cultural Materials (1433/2007). The purpose of the act is to archive and preserve Finnish cultural heritage for information users. The National Library of Finland and the National Audiovisual Institute (KAVI) are responsible for legal deposit activity in Finland.

Use of legal deposit materials

Printed legal deposit materials are kept in the legal deposit collection in the Pegasus Library. Library users may order the material for their own use by placing an order through the Oula-Finna online catalogue or at the library service desk.

The materials ordered from the collection are brought to the first floor service desk in the Pegasus Library, where the customers may borrow them for reading room use in the library. The staff of the University of Oulu and Oulu University of Applied Sciences may also borrow the material for use in their offices.

The maps, official publications and statistical publications that the library has received as legal deposit copies are available for browsing and use by customers on the third floor of the Pegasus Library.

Electronic legal deposit materials are available for customer use on the legal deposit workstation on the third floor of the Pegasus Library.

Timeline of legal deposit in Oulu

Oulu City Library was granted legal deposit rights after the Second World War, when the legal deposit rights of the Viipuri City Library were transferred to Oulu. In 1961 the government transferred the legal deposit rights from Oulu City Library to Oulu University Library.

The legal deposit rights of Oulu University Library have never covered newspapers and recordings (e.g. sound recordings). As regards other material, the changes in the legislation have affected the legal deposit entitlement of the university library as follows:

  • 1961 Oulu City Library hands over to Oulu University Library the legal deposit copies it has not incorporated into its own collections.
  • The entitlement to receive legal deposit copies is shared with the Library of Parliament so that Oulu University Library receives the publications that the Library of Parliament does not incorporate into its collections.
  • 1981 Oulu University Library is granted full legal deposit rights. All editions of printed publications are preserved. The university library's legal deposit rights also cover ephemera.
  • 2008 Electronic legal deposit is introduced. From 2008 the legal obligation to preserve only applies to first editions and revised editions. Ephemera are no longer included in Oulu University Library's legal deposit rights and they may also be removed from the collections retrospectively.
  • 2016 Decree specifying e.g. the obligation to preserve printed publications. The obligation only applies to first editions and revised editions. Reprints may be retrospectively removed from the collection, as may material that has been digitised, at the library's own discretion.

Further information about legal deposit activity in Oulu:

Murhu, Rae. Oulun yliopiston kirjasto 1959-1984 = Oulu University Library 1959-1984
Oulu: Oulun yliopisto 1985. Oulun yliopiston kirjaston julkaisuja 12

Pilkkeitä kirjastosta : Oulun yliopiston kirjaston 40-vuotisjuhlajulkaisu
Oulu: Oulun yliopiston kirjasto, 1999. Oulun yliopiston kirjaston julkaisuja 45

Databases and directories with information about legal deposit material

Oula-Finna online library catalogue

  • bibliographic and availability information of printed legal deposit material available in Oulu University Library
  • ephemera and maps have not been catalogued in Oula-Finna

Fennica - the National Bibliography of Finland

  • bibliographic information of all printed material published in Finland (books, journals, maps)
  • Fennica also includes the bibliographic information of some electronic legal deposit material

Melinda - union catalogue of Finnish libraries

  • bibliographic and availability information of material in university libraries, libraries of universities of applied sciences and special libraries (books, journals, maps)
  • In future Melinda will cover the material of all Finnish public libraries, as well

Arto - database of Finnish periodical and monograph articles

  • bibliographic information of Finnish periodical and monograph articles
  • links to full-text articles

Doria - multi-disciplinary repository

  • freely available material digitised by the National Library of Finland
  • books, maps, ephemera, recordings, manuscripts etc.

Digi - material digitised by the National Library of Finland

  • journals and ephemera published before 1930 freely available at
  • journals published since 1930 only available on designated legal deposit workstations

Viola - National Discography of Finland

  • information about Finnish sound recordings and sheet music

Finnish Web Archive

  • search and browse websites
  • viewing and listening to the actual content of the archive is only possible on designated legal deposit work stations

RTVA - Radio and Television Archive

  • search and browse archived radio and television programs
  • viewing and listening to the actual content of the archive is only possible on designated legal deposit workstations