Deutsches Zentrum für barrierefreies Lesen (dzb lesen)

About Us

Who We Are and What We Do

Since 12. November 2019, the German Central Library for the Blind (DZB) has been operating under the new name Deutsches Zentrum für barrierefreies Lesen (German Centre for Accessible Reading) – dzb lesen for short.
In addition to blind and visually impaired people, dzb lesen can also support anyone who is unable to read or handle ordinary print materials, either due to a physical disability or other print disabilities, such as dyslexia.
As a centre for accessible reading we will produce new types of media, e.g. accessible ebooks, and thus, enhance our literary offer and make more knowledge and information accessible.

The dzb lesen now belongs to the most important media institutions of German speaking countries. Over 5,000 members use the library's different services. The library comprises about 72,000 volumes: braille books, braille music, talking books and reliefs such as geographical maps and calendars. The dzb lesen edits and publishes many magazines in braille and audio formats. Additionally our scientific library collects published information about blindness, visual impairments and related topics.

Since 2002, the dzb lesen has lent out DAISY books. This technique is being continuously developed in close cooperation with the DAISY Consortium.

The dzb lesen plans to successively develop from a traditional library for the blind into a centre for barrier free communication. While the modern communication technologies hold a huge potential and chance for people with reading disabilities to access information independently without the help of sighted people, such as the Screenreader. A huge amount of printed and electronic documents as well as websites do not adhere to standards of barrier-free accessibility, yet. The dzb lesen has undertaken the task to inform its users of the advantages of the new technologies and at the same time to promote the standards of accessibility and barrier free (web) design to the sighted world.

The dzb lesen is a state-owned institution primarily financed with public funds, as costs for making printed information accessible to visually impaired people or to people, who is unable or handle ordinary print materials, cannot be refinanced through product prices or lending fees. Private donations support further projects and services of the institution. You can, for example, support the transcription of printed books into braille by donating to the Förderverein „Freunde der DZB e. V.“ (Friends' Association of the DZB).

Any blind or partially sighted person and person with physical disability or other print disabilities, living in Saxony or South America, can use the dzb lesen's services. We are glad to be at your service.

dzb lesen-Statistics

total number of usersca. 5.646
total number of titlesca. 73.000
number of braille volumesca. 18.200
number of talking books (DAISY) ca. 48.000
number of volumes of the scientific library ca. 6.630