Thursday, May 10, 2012
Planning and Building a Digital Collections Program
Four Points Sheraton Hotel and Conference Center
1125 Boston Providence Turnpike
When:9:00 am - 3:00 pm
Note: Registration begins at 7:30am
Workshop Organizer: Helen Bailey of Dartmouth College and Kelcy Shepherd of Amherst College
Libraries and cultural heritage centers have been undertaking digitization projects for nearly two decades, but many are still striving to establish programs that integrate the work of building digital collections into the organizational fabric of the institution. Moving from individual initiatives to a cohesive, ongoing digital collections program requires an institution to establish organizational and technological infrastructures; develop workflows and efficient processes for digitization and quality management; plan for long-term access and preservation of persistent digital objects; and advocate for ongoing resources and support. This workshop will address these challenges and highlight successful approaches to creating a robust organizational framework for supporting digital collections. It will include presentations of real-world solutions from a variety of institutions, and provide an opportunity to share strategies and practices in discussion groups.
Participants can expect to come away with a broad understanding of the issues surrounding digital collections management, as well as practical suggestions for ways to address these issues within their own institutions.
Topics covered will include:
• Infrastructure design for a digitization program, including organizational frameworks, workflow models, policy development, and oversight.
• Tools, resources, and standards for digitization, including suggestions for outsourcing and working with vendors.
• Laying the groundwork for digital preservation, focusing in particular on practical solutions using limited resources.
• Advocating for a digital collections program, with an emphasis on articulating and obtaining the necessary resources in terms of staff, budget, and infrastructure.
7:30am – 9:00am Registration and Coffee
9:00am – 9:15am Welcome, Introduction and Overview
9:15am – 10:00am Developing a Digital Production Infrastructure: Frameworks and Policies
Speaker: David Seaman, Associate Librarian for Information Management, Dartmouth College
Drawing on a 2-year planning process at Dartmouth College Library, this presentation will lay out a new Digital Program infrastructure and related policies in selection, preservation, and rights management. The program encompasses the strategic digitization of locally-held items and collections with the publishing of born-digital scholarship (partly in collaboration with the University Press of New England).
10:00am – 10:45am Beyond scanning; Digitization for the 21st Century
Speaker: David Mathews, Partner, The Image Collective
Image quality, work-flow consistency, and image authenticity describe a few baseline objectives which hopefully influence a reformatting program. Today's project manager searches for digitization guidelines offering sustainability, best practice disciplines, well informed collection quantification while adhering to institutional directives and budgets. A careful examination of source material is key to determining the extent or limitation of a digitization initiative. Diverse collections dictate multi-tiered approaches, and uniformity of the digital asset is within reach when guided by well-informed decision making.
This short, concise talk is aimed at providing practical and sustainable image quality solutions for the cultural heritage professional. Creation of high quality files requires more than equipment. Understanding the technology, pursing quantifiable solutions, and discovering insightful diagnostics will ensure digital file construction suitable for multi-use rendering and long-term sustainability.
10:45am – 11:00am Break
11:00am – 11:45am Digital Preservation: Principles and Practice
Speaker: Nancy McGovern, Head, Curation and Preservation Services, Massachusetts Institute of Technology Libraries
An overview of the current state of standards-based good practice for digital preservation using a set of 10 principles that any organizations should be able to adopt. The principles provide a framework for a discussion of the components of a sustainable digital preservation program.
11:45am – 12:00pm Q&A, discussion
12:00pm – 1:00pm Lunch
1:00pm – 1:45pm Making the Case: Advocating for Resources
Speaker: Anne Sauer, Director and University Archivist, Tufts University
While grant funds can be useful for getting started and pilot projects, sustainable digital collections require institutional support. This presentation will focus on strategies for building that support and advocating for the staff and financial resources necessary to maintain a digital collections program over time. Topics covered will include alignment with institutional goals, articulating needs, identifying sources, and targeting messages, as well as weighing choices between building resources internally and partnering with others.
1:45pm – 2:45pm Small group discussions on implementing these concepts in participant institutions
2:45pm – 3:00pm Follow-up, group discussion
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