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To Bangkok Conference programme

65th IFLA Council and General

Bangkok, Thailand,
August 20 - August 28, 1999

Code Number: 148-123E
Division Number: IV
Professional Group: Bibliography
Joint Meeting with: -
Meeting Number: 123
Simultaneous Interpretation:   No

World wide Thai Bibliographical Control

Chirudee Pungtrakul
System Librarian, Library and Information Center
Mahidol University, Bangkok, Thailand
E-mail: (licpn@mahidol.ac.th)


Background - an introduction

"Bibliographic control in Thailand, in general, has represented attempts by individual libraries to serve their clientele and for their own use. Improved communication and cooperation between various libraries and institutions would prove invaluable."

This is the general conclusion of the complete picture of bibliographic control in Thailand from the Doctoral dissertation of Dr. Chiranwan Bhakdibutr in 1979(1) This still proves to be true today. There have been compilations of bibliographies in Thailand since 1892 (B.E. 2435) in the Catalog of the Books of the Royal Vijirajan Library. (2)

The National Library of Thailand, founded in 1905, has been a pioneer in national bibliographic control and dissemination of all categories of informations. Since its establishment, the National Library has regularly issued a variety of bibliographies, lists and indexes of its valuable collections. These bibliographies have formed a means of national bibliographic control in the country and have formed a national record of Thai publications.

The Printing Act B.E. 2484 (A.D.1941) made the National Library the repository for publications produced in Thailand. The Act requires that a publisher deposit two copies of every publication, including newspapers printed in the country, with the National Library within seven days of the completion of printing. But it was estimated that less than sixty percent of publications produced in Thailand were sent to the National Library. (1)This is due the small fine imposed upon a publisher who failed to comply with the Act. Another even more discouraging fact is that the Printing Act does not apply to printed materials produced by the government. The National Library, therefore, only receives government publications which are complimentary. What makes compilation even more difficult is that the production and distribution of Thai government publications are decentralized. There is no central agency to handle the printing and distribution of these materials.

An attempt to compile a bibliography of official documents of Thailand was initiated by the National Library in 1958 with the issuing of A list of Thai Government Publications covering the year 1954, 1955 and 1956. (Bangkok : The National Library, 1958, 31 pp.) (1)

In producing the Thai national bibliography, the guidelines and recommendations on national bibliographies which were adopted at the Conference on Universal Bibliographic Control in Southeast Asia, held in Singapore in 1975 have been accepted. These recommendations conformed with and followed international bibliographic standards, aiming toward compatibility for international exchange of information and the UBC program.

The Thai National Bibliography project was initiated in 1958 with the collaboration of the Thai Library Association. The first National Bibliography was issued in 1959. Many other followed irregularly. Lists of bibliographies can be found in may research papers and compilations. The National Library is also the national repository of the United Nations and UNESCO publications.

Another important function of National Library in the role of National bibliographic control and service is the assigning of the International Standard Book Number (ISBN) to new publications produced in the country. This encourages the publisher to send at least the names of publications to be registered at the National Library.

Some of research and papers on the history of Thailand's bibliographic control can be found in:

1967. Chun Prabhavi-vadhana, "Documentation in Thailand," UNESCO Bulletin for Libraries 21 (July-August 1967) : 207

1970. Nonglak Minaikit. Problems of Bibliographical Control and Services in Thailand. (M.A. thesis, Chulalongkorn University, 1970).

1975. Songvit Kaesri, "Bibliographic Services and Control in Thailand," in Conference on Universal Bibliographic Control in Southeast Asia: Papers and Proceedings, jointly organized by the Library Association of Singapore, and the Persatuan Perpustakaan Malaysia, held in Singapore, 21-23 February, 1975, eds. Hedwig Anuar et al. (Singapore : Library Association of Singapore, 1975),

1977. Maenmas Chavalit, "National Library, Documentation and Information Services in Thailand: A country report:," in Integrated Library and Documentation Services within the Framework of NATIS: Proceedings of the Third Conference of Southeast Asian Librarians, Jakarta, Indonesia, December 1-5, 1975, eds. Luwarsih Pringgoadisurijo and Kardiate Sjahrial (Jakarta: Published for Ikatan Pustakawan Indonesia, by PDIN-LIPI, 1977), pp. 106-107.

1979. Chirawan Bhakdibutr. Bibliographic control of government publications in Thailand. (Ph.D. Dissertation, Texas Woman's University, 1979).

1984. Charuvarn Sindusopon. Compilation and analysis of bibliographies and indexes published in Thailand. Bangkok: Thai Khadi Research Institute, Thamasat University.

Present - changes

There have been many changes in the last few years with the widespread use of information technology and the Official Information Act B.E. 2540 (A.D. 1997) in Thailand. The Official Information Act requires that government bodies should publicize their operations more freely to public.(see http://www.krisdika.go.th/law/image/lawpub/e02092540/1.htm)

From about 1980 Thai libraries, especially university libraries, started computerizing their collections. Most databases are done on standalone computers, which were rather expensive in those days. Most databases were experimental and were done on available free software. Most popular were dBase, FoxPro, and CDS/ISIS. Some developed their own application software from standard computer languages such as COBOL, BASIC and Pascal. (3) From those days librarians were using the standardized MARC format to created bibliographical databases. Unfortunately the Handbook for the record structure of books and documents (in Thai : Thai translation is not available, [2529]), distributed by the Ministry of University Affairs in 1976, is not very popular among libraries. One of the reasons is that the Handbook was published long after the leading Universities had adopted their own structure for machine readable bibliographic records. Nevertheless, most machine readable record adopted and used by the leading universities are often modified from the standard MARC format, especially the US MARC format. The most popular modified MARC format must have been the CU-MARC, a MARC format from Chulalongkorn University.

From 1992 the National Library has adopted the Dynix library automation software. Book and document records are stored in MARC format. They also provide printing of the National Bibliography using this software. A year later Chulalongkorn University implemented the INNOPAC System. Between 1995-1997 we've seen new library automation in Thailand. Most libraries received a large budget to implement their own automation, most choosing to use a "turnkey" system. The most popular "turnkey" systems used are the INNOPAC system, DYNIX and VTLS. Another system fast becoming popular is the CDS/ISIS on Web (distributed by UNESCO and other programmers in many countries, free of charge). The main point is that, with the use of library automation and the adoption of MARC format, each major library in Thailand has contributed the so-called "bibliographic control" to the community.

There are also organizations which play important roles in compiling electronic resources in Thailand apart from the National Library and university libraries. Such organizations are:

The Thai National Documentation Center (TNDC)

[http://www.tistr.or.th/], 1961- .

TNDC was established in 1961 to operate a full range of documentation services in the fields of science and technology. It serves as a special library of the Applied Science Research Corporation of Thailand (ASRCT), a semi-governmental body, and also serves as a national library of science and technology.

TNDC also serves as the National AGRIS Center of Thailand which participates in the International Information System for the Agricultural Sciences and Technology (AGRIS)

Thailand Information Center (TIC)

[http://www.car.chula.ac.th/eser_tic.htm], 1968- .

TIC was initially established in 1968 as a joint project of the Military Research and Development Center (MRDC) of the Ministry of Defense and the Research and Development Center - Thailand (RDC-T) of the Advanced Research Projects Agency (ARPA) of the United States. It was transferred to Chulalongkorn University after ARPA's research projects in Thailand terminated in 1971. (1)

    TIC provides databases on Thailand including;
  • Bibliographical citations, abstracts, and keywords arranged in the English language, with approximately 57,000 records;
  • An image processing system which records information from newspaper clipping files, research reports of the Thai Farmers Bank Research Center, interesting statistics.
  • The Reference Economic and Social Statistics(RESS) Database - a collection of statistical publications

Technical Information Access Center (TIAC)

[http://www.tiac.or.th/], 1989- .

TIAC serves the information needs of users from public and business sectors in the fields of science, technology, business and industry. For this purpose TIAC has compiled many bibliographical resources, especially the abstracts of theses in Thailand.


Since the beginning of Thailand's National bibliographic control, bibliographies have been done by libraries which needed them. The National Library acts as the depository for various kinds of books and document but they still do not handle all government publications. Nowadays, due to the Official Information Act, B.E. 2540 (http://www.krisdika.go.th/law/image/lawpub/e02092540/1.htm) most information is being computerized and distributed through the internet, especially government publications.

Libraries in Thailand are in a race to digitize their own collections to serve the information needs of their users and as a means of sharing resources. Due to the fact that Asian economics hit bottom in recent years, libraries have much to consider before acquiring technologies or resources. With resources being so expensive and electronic equipment being lower in price, libraries and their clientele share a common interest in using electronic information retrieval. In the near future, bibliographic control should be more comprehensive, with less effort on the part of a sole compilation compiler, and especially the National Library of Thailand should have an easier job in compiling and distributing national bibliographic information One of Thailand's advantages in moving toward the electronic information age is that most of our library information is stored in, more or less, the standard MARC format which in turn can be easily converted to a union catalog.


(1) Chirawan Bhakdibutr. Bibliographic control of government publications in Thailand. Ph.D. Dissertation, Texas Woman's University, 1979.

(2) Charuvarn Sindusopon. Compilation and analysis of bibliographies and indexes published in Thailand. Bangkok: Thai Khadi Research Institute, Thamasat University, 1984.

(3) Sirigarn Sriklueb. Status and trends of the use of application software in university. Thesis, Master of Arts, Department of Library Science, Chulalongkorn University, 1996.

Recommended bibliographic sites in Thailand

Compiled by Jirawan Nareelerd
Library and Information Center
Mahidol University


Universities - Central Part of Thailand
Asian Institue of Technology http://www.ait.ac.th/
Bangkok University http://cenlibk.bu.ac.th/
Chulalongkorn University http://www.car.chula.ac.th/
Chulalongkorn University Medical http://md3.md.chula.ac.th/
Dhurakijpundit University http://www.dpu.ac.th/
Kasem Bundit University http://www.kbu.ac.th/acad_res/
Kasetsart University http://www.lib.ku.ac.th/
King Mongkut Institue of Technology-Ladkrabang
King Mongkut Institue of Technology-North Bangkok http://library.kmitnb.ac.th
King Mongkut University of Technology-Thonburi
Mahanakorn University of Technology http://www.lib.mut.ac.th
Mahidol University http://www.li.mahidol.ac.th
Nation Institute of Development Administration http://www.nida.ac.th/lib.htm
Rachasuda College http://rs.rs.mahidol.ac.th/lirs/library.html
Ramkhamhaeng University http://library.lib.ru.ac.th
Rangsit University http://www.rsu.ac.th/
Siam University http://www.siamu.ac.th
Saint John's University http://s6.stjohn.ac.th/lib/
Silpakorn University-Thapra Palace Librar http://www.library.su.ac.th/main.html
Srinakharinwirot University - Prasarnmitr http://www.swu.ac.th/lib/
Sripatum University http://library.spu.ac.th/
Sukhothai Thammathirat University http://www.stou.ac.th/
Thammasat University http://library.tu.ac.th/

Universities - Northern Part of Thailand
Burapha University http://www.buu.ac.th/~library/
Chiangmai University http://www.lib.cmu.ac.th/
Maejo University http://maejo.mju.ac.th/

Universities - Northeastern Part of Thailand
Khon Kaen University http://library.kku.ac.th/
Mahasarakham University http://www.library.msu.ac.th/
Naresuan University http://www.lib.nu.ac.th/
Suranaree University of Technology http://sutlib1.sut.ac.th/
Ubon Ratchthani University

Universities - Southern part of Thailand
Prince Songkla University - Hatyai http://wwwclib.psu.ac.th/
Prince Songkla University - Pattani http://wwwclib.psu.ac.th/

Royal Thai Government

Office of The Prime Minister
The Council of State of Thailand http://www.krisdika.go.th/
Department of Technical and Economic Cooperation http://www.thaigov.go.th/dtec.htm
Electriccity Generating Authority of Thailand http://www.egat.or.th
The Mass Communication Organization of Thailand http://www.mcot.or.th/
National Economic and Social Develment Board of Thailand http://www.nesdb.go.th/
National Statistical Office http://www.nso.go.th/
Office of The Civil Service Commission http://www.infonews.co.th/CSC/index.html
Office of The National Security Council http://www.nsc.go.th/
Office of The National Educational Commission http://www.onec.go.th
Office of The Royal Development Projects Board http://www.rdpb.go.th
Public Relations Department http://www.prd.go.th/
Royal Thai Police http://www.police.go.th/
The Secretarial of The Cabinet
Thailand Board of Investment http://www.bangkoknet.com/boi.html
Tourism Authority of Thailand http://www.tat.or.th/

Ministry of Defence
Royal Thai Airmed Force http://www.rtaf.mi.th/
Royal Thai Navy http://www.navy.mi.th/
Royal Thai Supreme Command Heasquaters http://www.armedforces.inet.co.th/

Ministry of Finance
The Customs Department http://www.customs.go.th/
Excise Department http://www.exd.mof.go.th/
Information System of Fiscal Policy Office http://www.fpo.mof.go.th/
Revenue Department http://www.rd.go.th/
The Trasury Department http://www.trd.mof.go.th/

Ministry of Foreign Affairs
Agriculture Land Reform Office
Dairty Farming Promotion Organization of Thailand
Department of Agriculture http://www.doa.go.th/
Department of Livestock Development
Fish Marketing Organization
Land Development Department
The Marketing Organization for Farmers

Ministry of Agriculture and Co-operatives
Royal Forest Department http://www.forest.go.th/
The Royal Irrigation Department http://www.rid.go.th/
The Thai Plywood Company Limited

The Ministry of Transport and Communications http://www.bmta.motc.go.th/
Thai Airways International http://www.thaiair.com/

Ministry of Commerce http://www.moc.go.th/
Department of Business Economics http://www.moc.go.th/thai/dbe/
Department of Commercial Registration http://www.moc.go.th/thai/dcr/
Department of Export Promotion http://www.dep.moc.go.th/
Department of Foreign Trade http://www.dft.moc.go.th/flash.htm
Department of Interal Trade http://www.dit.go.th/
Department of Insurance http://www.moc.go.th/thai/id/

Ministry of Interior http://www.moi.go.th/
Department of Local Administration http://www.dola.go.th/index.htm
Department of Town and Country Planning http://www.dtcp.go.th/
Mrteopolital Water Authority http://www.mwa.or.th/
Provincial Electricity Authority http://www.pea.or.th/thai(ver)/indexT.htm

Ministry of Judicial Affairs
Department of Employment http://www.doe.go.th/
Department of Skill Delvelopment http://www.dsd.go.th/
Department of Labour Protection and Welfare http://www.dlpw.go.th/
Department of Public Welfare http://www.infonews.co.th/DPW/index.html
Office of The Judicial Affairs http://www.oja.go.th/
Ministry of Labour and Social Welfare http://www.molsw.go.th/

Ministry of Science, Tenology and Environment
Department of Environmental Quality http://www.deqp.go.th/
Thailand Institute of Scientific and Technological Research http://www.nstda.or.th/

Ministry of Education http://www.moe.go.th/
Department of Curriculum and Instruction Development http://www.moe.go.th/webdcid/dcid/
Department of General Education http://www.gened.th.org/
Department of Non-Formal Education http://www.nfe.go.th/
Department of Vocational Education http://www.moe.go.th/webdove/
The Fine Arts Department http://www.moe.go.th/finearts/
Offiece of Atomic Energy for Peace (OAEP) http://www.oaep.go.th/
Office of the Private Education Commission http://www.opec.go.th/
The Office of Rajabhat Institutes Council http://www.rajabhat.ac.th/
Pollution Control Department http://www.pcd.go.th/
Rajamongala Institute of Technology http://www.rit.ac.th/

Ministry of Industry http://www.industry.go.th/
Thai Industrial Standards Institute http://www.tisi.go.th/
Department of Industrial Works http://www.diw.go.th/
Department of Mineral Resources http://www.dmr.go.th/
Department of Industrial Promotion http://www.dip.go.th/
The Industrial Estate Authority of Thailand http://www.ieat.go.th/
Petroleum Authority of Thailand (PTT) http://www.ptt.or.th/

Ministry of University Affairs http://mis.mua.go.th/


Thank you to Mr. Paul Adam who helped in proof reading and improved my grammars. And thanks to all my friends who help in finding informations.

Chirudee Pungtrakul
System Librarian, Library and Information Center
Mahidol University at Salaya, Phuttamonthon 4 Rd.
Nakornpathom 73179, Thailand (licpn@mahidol.ac.th)


Latest Revision: September 28, 1999 Copyright © 1995-2000
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