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  1. 1. Here's the Story: Innovative Implementation of Archival Processing Natalie M. Baur CHC Archivist Candidate University of Miami February 22, 2012
  2. 2. What is the best way to go... <ul><li>From unprocessed: </li></ul><ul><li>To ready for the researcher: </li></ul>Courtesy Courtesy Harry Ransom Center Cultural Connection blog
  3. 3. &quot;Innovative implementation of archival processing revolves around making as much information about your archival holdings available to the widest research audience possible.&quot; <ul><li>Achieved in 3 Phases: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Assessment and Processing </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Description </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Creating Access Points </li></ul></ul>
  4. 4. Assessment and Processing <ul><ul><li>Decreasing backlog while increasing the number of higher level descriptions = connecting researchers to more material </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Assess the situation </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Where does this collection fit? </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>What condition did it arrive in? </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>What factors into when/how this collection will be processed?  </li></ul></ul></ul>
  5. 5. Innovation in Collaborative Processing <ul><li>The Power in Numbers </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Philadelphia Area Consortium of Special Collections Libraries (PACSCL) Processing Project </li></ul></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>&quot;Model for reducing backlog and making collections accessible at both large and small institutions by creating common approaches, standards and training materials.&quot; </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Innovations in processing: More Product, Less Process (MPLP); Archivists' Toolkit; Encoded Archival Description; Sharing progress via social media outlets </li></ul></ul></ul>
  6. 6. PACSCL Finding Aids Online Repository Hosted by University of Pennsylvania (
  7. 7. Innovation in Collaborative Preservation and Conservation <ul><li>The Power in Numbers, Part II </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>Conservation Center for Art and Historic Artifacts Survey Program (Philadelphia) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>&quot;CCAHA specializes in the treatment of art and historic artifacts on paper and provides preservation education, training, and consultation.  Established in 1977, CCAHA is one of the largest nonprofit conservation facilities in the country. &quot; </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Ideal for institutions with limited resources and no trained preservation/conservation staff  </li></ul></ul>
  8. 8. Description <ul><li>Description is the key to Access </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Strict control of the structural and descriptive elements and all of the metadata that is associated with those elements </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Achieved by: </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Descriptive standards </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Describing Archives: A Content Standard (DACS) </li></ul></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Encoded Archival Description (EAD) </li></ul></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Resource Description Access (RDA) </li></ul></ul></ul></ul></ul>
  9. 9. DACS <ul><li>D escribing Archives: A Content Standard </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Officially adopted by the Society of </li></ul></ul><ul><li>American Archivists in 2005 </li></ul><ul><ul><li>&quot;Archival descriptions in an online  </li></ul></ul><ul><li>environment...have highlighted differences and similarities in practice between repositories and brought to the fore the need for a content standard for finding aids.&quot; </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Designed to be used with two most commonly used access tools: catalogs and inventories </li></ul></ul>
  10. 10. EAD <ul><ul><li>Standardized description of collections within and across repositories </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Preserves the hierarchical relationships with the fonds and within the collection  </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>146 tags are used to describe elements of the collection, including biographical/historical notes, hierarchical levels, creator/contributor authorities, extent, date ranges, genre/form, etc. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Goal: machine-readable language easy to search, maintain, and exchange descriptions of archival holdings </li></ul></ul>
  11. 11. University of Delaware EAD Finding Aid MSS 093, Anne Daley autograph album,
  12. 12. Other considerations <ul><ul><li>Controlled vocabularies </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Library of Congress Subject Headings (LCSH) </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Getty Art and Architecture Thesaurus (AAT)  </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Interoperability </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Data  </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Institutional collaboration  </li></ul></ul></ul>
  13. 13. Creating Access Points <ul><ul><li>Archival data management systems </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Digitization </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Social media </li></ul></ul>
  14. 14. Archival Data Management Systems <ul><ul><li>Proprietary OPACs </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Innovation: Open Source </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>   Archon </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Very powerful because it allows archivist to employ descriptive standards and automatically create EAD and MARC records without special programming or encoding </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Instant updating on the public side for discovery and access. because there is no need for multiple administrative steps in preparing a record, information is available more quickly to the researcher </li></ul></ul></ul></ul>
  15. 15. Digitization <ul><ul><li>Preservation vs. availability </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Digital initiatives as they relate to the repository as a whole </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Linking finding aids and digital content management systems with persistent identifiers </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Born-digital resources  </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Strategies for long-term storage and access  </li></ul></ul></ul>
  16. 16. Advertising your collections Facebook Blogs Twitter Flickr
  17. 17. OCLC Survey of Special Collections (2009) <ul><li>Use this to tie the 3 phases together...with the prescient issue of innovation in responding to tough economic times </li></ul><ul><ul><li>275 repositories in the US and Canada </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>More materials, more usage, more backlog </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Innovation in Assessment, Description and Creating Access Points key to remaining resilient in current economic crunch and thriving in a robust future </li></ul></ul>
  18. 18. Who is the Innovative Archivist? <ul><ul><li>Stays up-to-date on current best practices and the role of technology in solving description and access issues </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Works as advocate for the repository's current and future collections: a relationship builder </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Embraces collaboration and teamwork </li></ul></ul>
  19. 19. Thank you! <ul><li>You can find this presentation online at: </li></ul><ul><li>References </li></ul><ul><ul><li>PACSCL: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>CCAHA: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Archon: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>DSpace: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Dooley, Jackie M. &quot;The OCLC Survey of Special Collections and Archives.&quot; Library Quarterly 21 (1): November 2010, 125-137. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Society of American Archivists. Describing Archives: A Content Standard.  Chicago: SAA, 2005. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Stevenson, Jane and Bethan Ruddock. &quot;Moving Towards Interoperability: Experiences of the Archives Hub.&quot; Ariadne 63: April 2010.  </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>  Cornish, Alan Kevin and Trevor James Bond. &quot;Developing and Sustaining the Northwest Digital Archives.&quot; Journal of Digital Information  9(2): 2011, 1-11.  </li></ul></ul>