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The Cornfield Maze: 15 years of digitisation and digital archiving in Flanders

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Presentation for Swansea delegation, 1 July 2015 (NISE, Antwerp)

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The Cornfield Maze: 15 years of digitisation and digital archiving in Flanders

  1. 1. The Cornfield Maze
  2. 2. 15 years of digitisation and digital archiving in Flanders
  3. 3. Max Wildiers Fund - May 1999: Flemish government agrees on investing 200 million BEF (approx. 4.600.000 EUR) in archival projects - managed by Fund for Scientific Research (FWO) - granted 24 (4-year) projects between 2000 and 2007 - gave birth to projects that were the first stones in a domino chain of initiatives on digital infrastructures, digitising and digital archiving
  4. 4. - DAVID > cDAVID > eDAVID > Archipel > VIAA - STCV > Abraham > Presse-Papier / Belgian War Press > VIAA - ODIS > Archiefbank Vlaanderen - ENA / Symphonic Music > DIVA > VIAA - Light of a Collective Past > KFA/Cinematek > VIAA - … Max Wildiers Fund
  5. 5. Digital Infrastructures
  6. 6. - Research Database for Intermediary Structures in Flanders (19th-20th century) – www.odis.be (ca. 170.000 records) - authority database of persons, families, organisations, publications, archives, repositories, events and buildings - collaboration of ADVN, Amsab-ISG, Kadoc & Liberaal Archief, formalised in a non-profit organisation - project funded by Max Wildiers Fund (2000-2003), further development granted by Hercules Fund (2009-2012) ODIS
  7. 7. Archiefbank Vlaanderen - database or guide (“yellow pages”) to the private (persons, families, organisations) archives in Flanders - founded in 2003 by ADVN, Amsab-ISG, Kadoc & Liberaal Archief as demanded by Flemish Archives decree (2002) - formalised in a non-profit organisation - funded by the Flemish Cultural Heritage Decree - concept, data architecture and initial data input based upon the ODIS-database - www.archiefbank.be (ca. 28.000 records)
  8. 8. Short Title Catalogue (STCV) - bibliography of 17th and 18th century publications printed in Flanders - 2000-2003: funded by Max Wildiers Fund - 2004-2009: funding continued by Flemish government - 2009: became a part of the Flemish Heritage Library (°2008) - www.vlaamse-erfgoedbibliotheek.be/stcv (ca. 28.000 ed.) - aided further development of Brocade database infrastructure, which is a.o. used for Abraham
  9. 9. Abraham - catalogue of Belgian newspapers deposited in Flemish heritage institutions - initial goal: national project for the conservation of Belgian newspapers (KBR, EHC & SOMA) - 2006: division between digitisation branch (KBR & SOMA) and cataloguing branch of the project (EHC) - 2007-2009: funded by Flemish government - 2009-…: became part of Flemish Heritage Library - www.vlaamse-erfgoedbibliotheek.be/abraham
  10. 10. Digitisation
  11. 11. Presse-Papier - national project for the conservation of Belgian newspapers - initiated in 2003 as a national Belgian project - aimed to digitise newspapers and develop a collective inventory a basis for selection - 2005: pilot project by Royal Belgian Library (KBR) and City of Brussels digitising Le Soir (250.000 pages, 1887-1970) - 2006: project was split up between EHC (Abraham project) and KBR / SOMA
  12. 12. Belgica / Belgian War Press - 2006: Federal government (Belspo) granted 4,5 million EUR for digitisation - 2012: 3,2 million pages of 70 newspapers (1831-1950) are digitised, but “only” available in the reading room of the KBR - 2012: SOMA launches the Belgian War Press database ( warpress.cegesoma.be ) with digitised clandestine newspapers from both world wars
  13. 13. VIAA – News of the Great War - due to the Great War commemorations VIAA – Flemish Institute for Archiving initiates a project to digitise all Belgian press between 1914 and 1918 - collaboration between VIAA, FARO, PACKED, Flemish Heritage Library and 13 content providers - 2013: inventory based upon Abraham and further research - 2014: digitising more than 300.000 pages in addition to the Belgian War Press (SOMA) scans
  14. 14. Other (paper) digitisations - Local newspapers: cities of Aalst, Ieper, Diksmuide, … - Regional newspapers: Gazet van Antwerpen / Mechelen - Alamire Foundation: musical heritage (manuscripts of polyphonic music, Biblioteca Apostolica Vaticana) - Itinera Nova: digitisation of 1128 city registers of Leuven (1362-1795), www.itineranova.be
  15. 15. Other (paper) digitisations - UB Gent: - digitisation of historical manuscripts: * landscape photography (www.recollectinglandscapes.be) * topographic collection * Antifonarium Tsgrooten (www.antifonarium-tsgrooten.be) * Liber Floridus (www.liberfloridus.be) - Google Books project: scanning 300.000 copyright free books (lib.ugent.be/en/project-google.shtml)
  16. 16. DIVA / VERDI - audiovisual archives of the VRT (Flemish Public Broadcaster) - 2008-2011: digitisation of 13.000h of audio and 6.200h of video (out of a grand total of 90.000h of audio and 170.000h of video) - 2012-2013: digitisation of all radio journals and DAT-tapes (1975-2006) - 2013: collaboration agreement with VIAA
  17. 17. VIAA - Flemish Institute for (Audiovisual) Archiving - founded in 2012 by the Flemish government - follow-up of research projects BOM-VL, Archipel and digitisation projects DIVA / VERDI - ambition to digitise 600.000h of audio and video - collaboration between media sector and heritage sector - introduction video: www.viaa.be
  18. 18. Cinematek - = Royal Belgian Film Archive - repository and digitisation of film, especially those threatened by acid or vinegar syndrome - digitising funded by Federal government (Belspo) or European projects (e.g. European Film Gateway 1914-1918)
  19. 19. Digital Archiving
  20. 20. DAVID - DAVID - Digital Archiving for Flemish Institutions and Services - research project (2000-2003) funded by Max Wildiers Fund and conducted by FelixArchief and ICRI - manual with practical and legal guidelines for digital archiving - cDAVID - research project (2004-2007) funded by the Flemish government and conducted by FelixArchief - manual with guidelines on digitising cultural heritage
  21. 21. DAVID - eDAVID - Expertisecentrum DAVID, founded in 2006 as a non-profit organisation linked to FelixArchief and funded by the Flemish government - research projects: * digital depot (2006-2009): functional, organisational and legal aspects of a digital repository * CEST (2009-2010): toolbox of cultural heritage standards, in collaboration with PACKED
  22. 22. PACKED - founded in 2005 by Argos, MuHKA, SMAK and MDD as a platform for collaboration on archiving and conservation of audiovisual arts - 2006-2010: funded by the Flemish government as a nationwide centre of expertise - 2010-2011: collaboration with eDAVID on CEST-toolbox - 2011-…: funded as a centre of expertise on digital heritage
  23. 23. BOM-VL - Conservation and Dissemination of Multimedia in Flanders - research project (2008-2009) funded by the Flemish government - goal: solutions for long-term preservation of audiovisual archives - first project combining media and cultural heritage sector - follow-up projects: - Vlaanderen in Beeld (media partners) - Archipel (cultural partners)
  24. 24. Archipel -“Network-centric approach to sustainable digital archives” - research project (2009-2011) funded by the Flemish government and conducted by FARO and IBBT - follow-up of BOM-VL - goal: prove that offered solutions are sustainable while connecting small and larger archives - teaser: www.youtube.com/watch?v=WHk_hCBEsM0
  25. 25. Other - SODA: - research project (2012-2013), funded by the Flemish government, conducted by AMVB - roadmap for the deposit of digital archives in small archives - SIP Creator: - development project (2012-2013), funded by the Flemish government, executed by Ghent University Library - open source tool to create Submission Information Packages (SIP’s)
  26. 26. Digital repositories - FelixArchief (Antwerp) - University Library Ghent - Flemish Parliament - LIAS-consortium (KADOC/KULeuven) - VIAA (project Trustworthy Digital Repository)
  27. 27. ADVN & NISE
  28. 28. ADVN: a two-track policy - digitising on demand: - in-house scanning / reproduction of individual items for patrons, publications, exhibitions, website etc. - selected digitisation (in-house for scanable items, outsourced for audiovisual items): - series of items of an identical format (flags, big posters etc.) - series of items from one archive or thematic collection - participating in regional or nationwide initiatives like VIAA
  29. 29. NISE: sharing knowledge - Expertise and Information Centre (EIC): - establishing an international network of archives and libraries - promoting exchange of best practices and experiences - support and participation in international projects - … (always open for suggestions)

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