Conference 2016

Conference in 2016

Thanks to Conference Organisers – to all at Canterbury for organising and hosting and taking such good care of us throughout.

Thanks to all of our speakers who (to borrow from the aims of the BCC) informed, educated and entertained us.

Thanks to the participants – your engagement and involvement and participation made it a great conference.

My summary of the key themes from the day:

The National Archives (TNA) – why digitise? – Access; Preservation; Income Generation. Approach has been to ensure all licences with third parties are non-exclusive and time-limited.

Uses volunteers to add to online data – enhancing and enriching it.

Conservation is at the core of digitising

Durham – Technology now allows for the virtual re-creation of manuscripts, books and libraries that are physically apart – enabling fresh exploration and interpretation of collections in a way we never thought would be possible

John Rylands – Digitising a very wide range of materials – books, manuscripts, papers and now starting to work on preservation of digitally born material such as emails. As with the Durham experience it is now possible to virtually recreate a collection of books and papers

The expertise gained now being used as a digitisation bureau which will be of benefit to the smaller and less well financed archives who have the possibility to digitise now within reach

The process of digitising is one of constant learning – the more we digitise the better we get at it and the more we learn about how to digitise – a virtuous cycle.

Making digital material available not only increases access and use but can also lead to increased interest in the original physical material too as awareness of collections is increased.

Bodleian – Partnership with the Vatican. Aimed to digitise parts of their collections not the whole due to funding restrictions. The collections all have stories to tell but focussed on elements with an Oxford link where possible and with a biblical focus. Started with small collections so that a whole series could be done within the larger collections. Metadata was critical – without good metadata there’s little point in digitising.

Declan Kelly