Tuesday, April 08, 2008

When HEFCE underspends: a £22 million JISC digitisation project

In 2004, a £10 million HEFCE underspend [crikey Moses!] resulted in a windfall for JISC: Jean Sykes recounts being told to "spend this in 2-3 years on large scale digitisation projects, please."

JISC reviewed a list of extant proposals for content digitisation, but considered it important to consult the community and bring new bids to the table. 6 major projects were selected for Phase 1 - the largest digitisation activity in Europe - ranging from 18th century British parliamentary papers to British Library archival sound recordings. [Was it these chaps who had Charlotte Green in stitches last week?] The latter group set up a user panel to help decide which of the masses of recordings in the archive should be prioritised for digitisation.

Standards had to be agreed across all projects, and multimedia in particular presented a variety of obstacles. But from this, a JISC digitisation strategy is emerging. Lessons were learned:
  • user consultation (do it - and get some experts in)
  • procurement (technical and commercial issues)
  • metadata (metadata, metadata - importance cannot be overstated - build it in from the outset)
  • quality assurance and evaluation throughout the project
  • impact assessment (an increasingly big deal - projects now need to build in licences and metrics from the start)
  • project management - and capturing of lessons learned
  • interface accessibility
  • promotion of the finished service.
Phase 2 covers another 16 projects with a further £12m funding from JISC (big up those crazy HEFCE underspends!). Seven thousand reel to reels! Four thousand hours of recordings! Fifteen thousand Giles cartoons! Three thousand high quality Pre-Raphaelite images! Fifteen thousand theatrical objects! Half a million pages of Cabinet Papers! Over one million pages from national, regional and local newspapers! Five thousand university theses! Great War poetry and contextual archive material! [Apologies for all that terribly unliterary exclamation, but really, the breadth and scale of this stuff is staggering - did I already say Three cheers for HEFCE underspends?] Phase 1 and 2 projects will be free at the point of use to UK HE and FE, and some to schools and public libraries.

And now they're already preparing for Phase 3 (and here was I thinking Phase 3s are merely the product of an over-optimistic imagination). Work is underway to assess impact/usage of Phase 1 projects, which unfortunately did not have statistics built in from the outset so some qualitative indicators will need to be used. A gap analysis will be conducted to assess the community's needs, and the development of thematic portals will be investigated to make resources more comparable and usable (these could be extended to cover JISC collections, too). Future sustainability remains a big challenge - keeping digitised content accessible; migrating it to future formats and platforms; updating collections with new content. Ultimately, librarians may need to be prepared to subscribe to this content to ensure its preservation.

Labels: , , , ,


Anonymous Anonymous said...

(法新社a倫敦二B十WE四日電) 「情色二零零七」情趣產品大產自二十三日起在倫敦的肯辛成人影片頓奧林情色匹亞展覽館舉行,倫敦人擺脫對性的保守態度踴躍參觀,許多穿皮衣與塑膠緊身衣的好色之徒擠進這項世界規模最大的成人生活展,估計三天av女優展期可吸引八萬多好奇民成人電影色情參觀。






8:39 am  

Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home