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Inter-library lending

Employees of the Federal Administration and Swiss Armed Forces can make use of the Library Am Guisanplatz inter-library lending service free of charge. Books and documents not available in the BiG’s holdings can be ordered from other libraries in Switzerland and abroad. Registered users who are not federal employees can make use of this service to a limited extent.

Dienstleistungen_Fernleihe 2_Pexels
(Photo: Pexels)

The inter-library lending service allows you to order items that are not held at the Bibliothek Am Guisanplatz BiG. The staff will conduct a search for you in Switzerland and abroad and send you the item you seek free of charge.

Conditions for inter-library lending:

  • You have a SWITCH edu-ID and have registered on SLSP (Swiss Library Service Platform).
  • You can provide precise bibliographic information about the publication you seek.
  • You have checked that the publication is not held at the BiG.


You can order online, by email or in person at the BiG front desk.

Delivery times

  • Orders for print media (books and print copies) from Swiss libraries are usually delivered within three to ten working days. For electronic copies (PDFs) the delivery time is two to three working days.
  • For orders from libraries abroad, the delivery time can vary greatly and take up to several weeks, depending on the country and the library concerned.

Lending period, renewals

  • The lending period depends on the library which lends the items. Items can usually be borrowed for a month, and may be renewed.
  • If you order an item that may not removed from the library, you may consult it on the premises.
  • If you wish to renew an item, please notify the inter-library lending staff before the lending period expires. 


You can return items in person at the front desk or send them carefully packaged by post to the BiG. Users are responsible for lost or damaged items. 

To order items via the inter-library lending service, you need to be registered on SLSP (Swiss Library Service Platform) with a SWITCH edu-ID.

The following charges apply for documents not ordered on SLSP:

Switzerland: CHF 12 per item

Europe:   CHF 24 per item

UK and overseas: CHF 36 per item

Charges are invoiced via SLSP.

NB: The BiG cannot order items that are available via swisscovery.

  • Libraries and documentation centres in Switzerland and abroad can borrow items from the BiG via the inter-library lending service.
  • An institutional account on SLSP is required.
  • Works published before 1914 and valuable works in our special collections may not be borrowed via the service. However, a reproduction of the work may be requested.


You can order online or by email.

Delivery time

Items are delivered within three to ten working days.


The BiG charges one IFLA voucher for each document sent abroad. 

Library Am Guisanplatz User Services
Papiermühlestrasse 21a
CH-3003 Bern
+41 58 464 50 99

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Library Am Guisanplatz

User Services
Papiermühlestrasse 21a
CH-3003 Bern

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