Vatican – Technology at the service of the mission: 10 years of collaboration between the Vatican Apostolic Library and NTT Data

10 April 2024

(ANS – Vatican City) – 10 April  2024 is a special anniversary for the Vatican Apostolic Library (BAV). The institution of the Holy See which today has Salesian Fr Mauro Mantovani as its Prefect, celebrates the tenth anniversary of its collaboration with the Japanese technological services company NTT data in the field of the preservation of its digital heritage. In 2014, in fact, BAV undertook a joint project with the Japanese company within which the technological skills of NTT DATA were happily associated with the experience and humanistic mission of the Papal Library.

NTT DATA, in particular, has developed AMLAD, a digital archiving tool used to digitize and archive the Library's heritage; the Japanese company also plays an important role in concretely supporting the Library's massive digitization project, which has now reached over 27,500 manuscripts available fully and free online for users around the world.

Over the years, the joint initiatives of the Library and NTT DATA have been strengthened and further structured due to a common interest in the protection, conservation and dissemination of cultural heritage, including various activities, including experimental ones.

On the occasion of the celebration of the tenth anniversary, the results of some of these initiatives will be presented and, in particular, the one launched in 2021 and connected to the digitization and preservation of artifacts in the field of cultural heritage. The Gregorian Tower has been the subject of a digital acquisition campaign aimed at immersive virtual exploration by users; the result of this initiative will be presented as part of the celebration of the tenth anniversary.

In addition, in 2023, exploring the possibilities offered by the so-called Web3 and the strong iteration allowed by NFT and blockchain technologies, NTT DATA carried out a new experimental project dedicated to users who share the Vatican's heritage on their social channels, demonstrating their support for the Library. This other initiative will also be the subject of a special presentation for the ten-year anniversary of the collaboration.

As the Prefect of the Library, Fr Mantovani, points out, "NTT DATA has played an important role in supporting the mission of the Vatican Library to make public the goods collected all over the world, without distinction of race, origin, culture, religion, politics or ideology, supporting scientific research and development. It is not just the Vatican Library that realises the value of the new communities NTT DATA is creating. We are confident that NTT DATA will continue to create new systems similar to this with various partners around the world."

"That with NTT Data is one of the international collaborations of the Vatican Apostolic Library that has greatly strengthened in recent years thanks to the collaboration and support, first and foremost, in the important project of digitizing our manuscripts, which is currently underway. This project has provided our institution with millions of images available to everyone through the website. With our Japanese partners and friends, we are also working on additional synergies related to projects promoting our documentary heritage, the ethical and sustainable use of new technologies and artificial intelligence in the field of librarianship and research, as well as shared activities, events, and initiatives in the happy coincidence, in 2025, of the Jubilee  and the Expo that will be held in Osaka between April and October next year,”  concluded  Fr Mauro Mantovani.


ANS - “Agenzia iNfo Salesiana” is a on-line almost daily publication, the communication agency of the Salesian Congregation enrolled in the Press Register of the Tibunal of Rome as n 153/2007.

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