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The transition to MARC 21 as the exchange format in Germany and Austria is about to be done.
After some years of preparation, with detailed analyses of the former format MAB and MARC 21, and in close cooperation with the international MARC community, libraries in German speaking countries have achieved a milestone in the process of internationalization German standards:
We now are able to "speak" MARC 21, and to "understand" MARC 21.
The German National Library, and some of the regional library networks offer their data in MARC 21, and can import MARC 21 data as well. The other national partners will follow.
During the preparation, the focus was always to be compliant to the standard MARC 21. In addition, some decisions were made in order to retain existing data models, and functionalities based on the data.
As a result, the MARC 21 data show some differences from data that are used in the Anglo-American cataloging context. These differences are:
- Cataloging rules
- Working languages
- Series records
- Models for multivolume monographs
- Linking by record control numbers
- ISILs as German MARC Organization Codes
- Locally defined format elements
- No ISBD interpunction at the end of subfields
- Non-sorting control character technique.
The presentation talks about the principles of the German transition to MARC 21. By showing MARC 21 examples in different implementation versions our approach is visualized.