To provide free public access in member countries to the World Bank's published information.
Each member country is entitled to one depository library. Additional depositories may be designated in developing countries. Depositories will not be authorized in non-member countries. U.N. or affiliate agencies or offices of the World Bank are not eligible.
Interested organizations must complete an Application for Designation as a Bank Depository Library. Seven basic criteria must be satisfied :
| 1.||Location. Generally no more than one library is designated in any one city. |
| 2.||Facilities. Participating institutions must have a public reading room and adequate space to shelve and maintain some 300 new publications a year. |
| 3.||Staff. At least one trained librarian must be responsible for implementing the organization's agreement with the Bank, or be in charge of the World Bank publications collection. |
| 4.||Systems. Participants must be able to place and maintain Bank publications under bibliographic control. |
| 5.||Accessibility. The institution must be open to the public during normal business hours. It is expected that use of the library will be without charge. |
| 6.||Library users. Evidence must be shown of the types and the number of individual and institutional clients served by the applicant. In general, libraries attached to institutes devoted to a specific sub-discipline of development will not be chosen. Libraries whose users are interested in all or most of the subjects about which the World Bank publishes will be preferred. |
| 7.||Outreach activity. An accessions or current acquisitions list should be circulated regularly to the library's clients. |
A formal memorandum of agreement between the Bank and the depository library sets out the activities to be undertaken by both organizations and their responsibilities. The agreement is renewable bi-annually on receipt of bi-annual reports to the Bank on the participating institution¹s activities.