Creating Digital Collections
What should my institution do if it wants to create digital collections?
It is important for any institution to articulate how digitization fits into its institutional goals prior to starting a digitization project. The following steps are suggested:
- Write a selection policy
- Select a suitable collection to digitize
- Consider whether you'll outsource the digitization or manage it in-house
- Set standards and best practices for handling and digitizing materials to prevent damage to originals
- Decide whether to host the site in-house or outsource (one option would be to join a repository)
- Write a long-term sustainability policy that answers the following:Who will oversee the collection?
- Who will fund it?
- Who will work on it in the future?
- How will you handle hardware and software obsolescence issues?
Reminder: Digitization is an access tool, not a preservation strategy.
Recommended Digitization Specifications
The Digital Commonwealth is developing recommended digitization specifications that will allow institutions to take advantage of the full functionality of the search portal.
A suggested web resource to consult is:
C/WMARS Digital Imaging Standards & Best Practices
Resources for Best Practices
Handbook for Digital Projects: A Management Tool for Preservation and
Access (First Edition)
Maxine K. Sitts, Editor
Northeast Document Conservation Center
Andover, Massachusetts, 2000