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The end is the beginning:
the challenges of digital
resources post-digitisation
Paola Marchionni, Programme Manager Digiti...
The end of a digitisation project marks
the beginning of the public life
of a digital resource.

That’s why it’s important...
1. A cautionary tale
(with a happy ending)

2. Some facts & figures

3. Some good examples
1. A cautionary tale
(with a happy ending)
Once upon a time…
the SALIDAA digital archive
was created:

1. A cautionary tale
(with a happy ending)
- Launched in 2004
...
Today
the SALIDAA digital archive
url takes you to:

1. A cautionary tale
(with a happy ending)
- In 2012 (?) SALIDAA ran
...
Luckily
the SALIDAA digital archive
survives on the VADS site
(Visual Arts Data Service)

1. A cautionary tale
(with a hap...
SALIDAA Google search results
- successful in top 10 results for
very specific searches (eg South
Asian diaspora”) or arti...
SALIDAA hyperlinks
- Existing links to
www.salidaa.org.uk take you to the
South Asian lawyers site
- The current SALIDAA p...
Resources: financial, staffing, in-kind
Technical maintenance
IPR and licencing

Unpacking
sustainability
- SALIDAA could ...
2. Some facts and figures
Digitisation and post-digitisation context
The majority of UK Higher Education research libraries (RLUK
members) have enga...
Digitisation and post-digitisation context
Special collections are recognised as strategically important to
institutions
•...
Digitisation and post-digitisation context
However, not much is known about users and how collections
are being used
•

Al...
Digitisation and post-digitisation context
Sustainability of digitised collections still relies on fairly
traditional mode...
Digitisation and post-digitisation context:
useful publications
• Survey of Special Collections and Archives in the United...
3. Some good examples
Sustainability: revenues

Vision of Britain
http://www.visionofbritain.org.uk

- Very popular resource of
historical maps ...
Sustainability: revenues

Connected Histories
Manuscripts Online
www.connectedhistories.org
www.manuscriptsonline.org

- A...
Sustainability: discovery

Manufacturing Pasts
www2.le.ac.uk/library/manufacturingpasts

-Digitised resources for
teaching...
Sustainability: discovery

Social media
- Pre-Raphaelite Online
Resource: links in Wikipedia
to Home page and deep
links t...
Sustainability: impact

Toolkit for the Impact of
Scholarly Digitised
Resources
microsites.oii.ox.ac.uk/tidsr

- Resources...
Thank you
Paola Marchionni
p.marchionni@jisc.ac.uk
@paolamarchionni

Image credit cover slide http://www.l2l-edu.com/2013/...
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The end is the beginning: the challenges of digital resources post-digitisation

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This is a presentation I gave to students from the Pratt Institute NY and the University of Tennessee Knoxville as part of King's College's Strand Symposium on Digital Scholarship and ePublishing in June 2013. It focuses on the challenges of sustaining digitised resources and offers:
- a cautionary tale
- some facts and figures
- some good examples

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  • New Opportunity Fund (later Big Lottery Fund): UK-wide programme £50m, launched in 1999, with most projects terminating in 2004. Total of 148 projects.
  • SALIDAA has very little web presence. The Brunel web page does not mention, or link to, the VADS web site, and describes the archive as available for visits only during certain times.A couple of links to the SALIDAA web site from Culture24 http://www.culture24.org.uk/am24149 and the Community Archives and Heritage Group http://www.communityarchives.org.uk/page_id__15_path__0p2p13p.aspx take you to the South Asian lawyers web site.
  • Survey of Special Collections and Archives in the United Kingdom and Ireland. http://bit.ly/11IjKHa p18
  • RLUK-OCLC survey: 122 academic and research libraries with significant special collections received invitations to participate in the survey. The rate of response was 67% (82 responses), including 100% of RLUK members.ARL (ARL): total of 202 respondents in ARL institutions (covering different roles). ARL includes 125 research libraries from institutions in Canada and the USASCA-Ithaka: interviewed 84 individuals in HE and heritage sector and 3 case studies: UCL, NLW and Imperial War Museum
  • Transcript of "The end is the beginning: the challenges of digital resources post-digitisation"

    1. 1. The end is the beginning: the challenges of digital resources post-digitisation Paola Marchionni, Programme Manager Digitisation p.marchionni@jisc.ac.uk @paolamarchionni
    2. 2. The end of a digitisation project marks the beginning of the public life of a digital resource. That’s why it’s important to plan for its sustainability as part of the development of the project. But what is sustainability all about? What are the challenges?
    3. 3. 1. A cautionary tale (with a happy ending) 2. Some facts & figures 3. Some good examples
    4. 4. 1. A cautionary tale (with a happy ending)
    5. 5. Once upon a time… the SALIDAA digital archive was created: 1. A cautionary tale (with a happy ending) - Launched in 2004 - 1000s of images and text resources on literature, music, visual and performing arts by UK-based South Asian artists - Funded originally by the New Opportunities Fund - Initial budget £250,000 -Further grants post-2004 www.salidaa.org.uk - Today physical archive at Brunel University http://bit.ly/14exLxY
    6. 6. Today the SALIDAA digital archive url takes you to: 1. A cautionary tale (with a happy ending) - In 2012 (?) SALIDAA ran into problems with its developers who were also hosting the web site - The developers held SALIDAA “at ransom” and eventually took the web site down - And with it went the url www.salidaa.org.uk - (The South Asian lawyers seemed to like not only SALIDAA’s url but also its logo’s typeface)
    7. 7. Luckily the SALIDAA digital archive survives on the VADS site (Visual Arts Data Service) 1. A cautionary tale (with a happy ending) - As part of the digitisation project, SALIDAA deposited its digital assets with VADS and could survive without a dedicated web site - SALIDAA has received HLF funding for new activities and a web site - SALIDAA on VADS is top of Google search results -However, SALIDAA has little web presence or “propagation” www.vads.ac.uk/collections/SALIDAA
    8. 8. SALIDAA Google search results - successful in top 10 results for very specific searches (eg South Asian diaspora”) or artists with little web coverage (Samena Rana, AWWC) - no results for other relevant but wider searches (eg South Asian arts) or when artists have coverage somewhere else on web
    9. 9. SALIDAA hyperlinks - Existing links to www.salidaa.org.uk take you to the South Asian lawyers site - The current SALIDAA page on Brunel University web site does not link to VADS!
    10. 10. Resources: financial, staffing, in-kind Technical maintenance IPR and licencing Unpacking sustainability - SALIDAA could say “No” to the developers because archive was on VADS. - However, sustainability is not just about robust technical infrastructure and digital preservation. Discovery Editorial currency Communication Use and embedding Measuring impact - It is also about ensuring a digital resource is kept current and can easily be found and used.
    11. 11. 2. Some facts and figures
    12. 12. Digitisation and post-digitisation context The majority of UK Higher Education research libraries (RLUK members) have engaged in digitisation projects • 97% of respondents to a recent RLUK-OCLC survey have completed at least one special collections digitisation project and/or have an active digitisation programme that includes special collections • 40% can undertake projects only with special funding, while one-third have a recurring budget for digitisation • More than 40% have licensing contracts with commercial vendors to digitise materials and sell access.
    13. 13. Digitisation and post-digitisation context Special collections are recognised as strategically important to institutions • “special collections and archives play a key role in differentiating each institution from its peers” (RLUK p15) • “over 80% [of respondents] agreed that digitized special collections are critical to our current strategic direction” (ARL)
    14. 14. Digitisation and post-digitisation context However, not much is known about users and how collections are being used • Although overall use of special collections (not just digitised) by all types of users has increased, 90% of user “type” is not known (RLUK p16) • Outreach and fundraising , among others, identified as biggest challenges and areas where staff are in need of training (RLUK p16) • No established metrics for assessing user services (RLUK p16) • Once collections have been digitised, little investment is made in understanding the needs of audiences: 43% of libraries gather analytics but far less conduct any qualitative research (ARL)
    15. 15. Digitisation and post-digitisation context Sustainability of digitised collections still relies on fairly traditional models • Many projects draw support from host institution typically for storage, preservation, access, but this is not budgeted or guaranteed (SCA-Ithaka p4) • No much effort or budget goes towards enhancement of resources created (ARL p2) • No much effort goes towards revenue generation activities (SCA-Ithaka p4) often seen in conflict with institutional/open mission (ARL p24) • Revenue generation activities (eg content licencing or print on demand), gain only on average 21% of the total cost of maintaining the collection in the previous year, median only 10% (ARL p27)
    16. 16. Digitisation and post-digitisation context: useful publications • Survey of Special Collections and Archives in the United Kingdom and Ireland. http://bit.ly/11IjKHa RLUK-OCLC, 2013 • Sustaining our Digital Future: Institutional Strategies for Digital Content. http://bit.ly/11Ijrfr Jisc/SCA-Ithaka S+R, 2013 • Appraising our Digital Investment: Sustainability of Digitized Special Collections in ARL [Association of Research Libraries] http://bit.ly/11IjQOT Ithaka S+R, 2013 More publications on sustainability and business models from Jisc/SCA at http://bit.ly/120ABEI
    17. 17. 3. Some good examples
    18. 18. Sustainability: revenues Vision of Britain http://www.visionofbritain.org.uk - Very popular resource of historical maps and data - Not much institutional support from Portsmouth University -But a very dedicated academic champion (can have its drawbacks) - Average 200k visitors/month (not typical for academic web sites!) -Revenue from GoogleAds Dec2012-May2013 over £10,000 - Successful because v large user base and ‘findability’
    19. 19. Sustainability: revenues Connected Histories Manuscripts Online www.connectedhistories.org www.manuscriptsonline.org - Aggregators of digital collections for federated searches - Humanities Research Institute, Uni Sheffield - Charging matrix: cost of adding and storing new data - Successful because costs are transparent and small (£1,000-4,000 per collection) - Costed to achieve surplus -CH doubled number of collections added since launch (22 total as of Jun`13)
    20. 20. Sustainability: discovery Manufacturing Pasts www2.le.ac.uk/library/manufacturingpasts -Digitised resources for teaching and learning British industrial past - Uni of Leicester Library -Discovery based on open technical and licensing approaches eg: - CC-BY-NC content licence - CC0 metadata licence - enabling re-use by aggregators such as Jorum, Culture Grid, Europeana, Summon through API, OAIPMH and social media “Discovery” case study http://bit.ly/10i3Mpq -Collecting usage data
    21. 21. Sustainability: discovery Social media - Pre-Raphaelite Online Resource: links in Wikipedia to Home page and deep links to other pages -Wikipedia top referral site after direct access to site -Manuscripts Online: Facebook is third top referral after Google and direct access -Bomb Sight: web site went viral after Twitter frenzy and spiked at 360 visitors per minute
    22. 22. Sustainability: impact Toolkit for the Impact of Scholarly Digitised Resources microsites.oii.ox.ac.uk/tidsr - Resources, tools and case studies on how to measure usage and impact - Popular ones: webometrics (links analysis), analytics, citations, content analysis, referrers analysis) - General principles: See also Measuring the Impact of Digital Resources, Simon Tanner http://bit.ly/12neaIP view multiple sources of evidence integrate impact measure in design of resource monitor regularly but don’t become bogged down with it impact takes a long time
    23. 23. Thank you Paola Marchionni p.marchionni@jisc.ac.uk @paolamarchionni Image credit cover slide http://www.l2l-edu.com/2013/01/every-end-is-new-beginning.html Slide 10: http://moving.about.com/b/2007/03/14/are-you-tired-of-unpacking.htm
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