An Introduction to CrossAsia


Monday, April 12, 2021, 10:00am to 11:00am


Online Event (Zoom)

East Asian Digital Scholarship Series

Matthias Kaun, Director of the East Asia Department, Berlin State Library


Staatsbibliothek zu Berlin (Berlin State Library) has been developing and running the platform CrossAsia ( for more than a decade. It was launched in 2005 to provide an easy to use and central point of access to the printed and electronic resources in the library’s collection relating to East, Central and Southeast Asia. The collection is partly funded by the German Research Foundation (DFG). Over the years, Staatsbibliothek zu Berlin has continuously adjusted the objectives for CrossAsia, incorporating and in some cases anticipating the demands of academia and research - especially in the field of digital scholarship.

In this presentation, Matthias Kaun, director of the East Asia Department of the Berlin State Library, will focus on two points. First, he will introduce the cosmos of CrossAsia, including collection building, ILL services, digitization, and presentation, searching, contextualization of collections, full-text search (ITR), OA support, or (research) data services. He will do this from the perspective of a library and information infrastructure that is rethinking its mission to support Asia-related (digital) scholarship and research in an ever more globalized and digitally connected world. Matthias will show how CrossAsia seeks to organize access to collections - regardless of their physical form and/or usage limitations due to licensing restrictions - in ways that make the materials findable, accessible, interoperable, and reusable wherever possible.

Secondly, Matthias Kaun will explore the aspect of responsibility that goes hand in hand with the further development and operation of CrossAsia in the context of a networked and more internationally-oriented research.