🌍 Call for Participation - Collections as Data: State of the Field and Future Directions 🌏


Building upon a diverse range of collections as data experimentation, the time has come to assess the state of the field on an international level - our challenges, our aspirations, and prospective ways of working together. In order to chart future directions for our community, Collections as Data: Part to Whole is holding a collaborative international working event in Vancouver, Canada from April 25-26, 2023. Collections as Data: State of the Field and Future Directions will inform the production of a white paper and subsequent multinational collections as data initiatives.

Libraries, archives, and museums around the world increasingly coalesce around the concept, community, and area of work referred to as β€˜collections as data’. Definitions vary, but in general collections as data proponents seek to develop collections, staff, services, and partnerships that support multidisciplinary, multi professional, and creative computational engagement with all collections held by libraries, archives, and museums β€” a scope that spans text, images, research data, moving images, recorded, sound, web archives, and more. Crucially, collections-as-data proponents should hold in common a commitment to ethically grounded, responsible use of collections within their care.

The scale of collections as data work - both explicitly identified and complementary in nature - is international. In the United States, successive efforts manifest in projects like Always Already Computational: Collections as Data, Collections as Data: Part to Whole, and the Library of Congress’ Computing Cultural Heritage in the Cloud have seeded an increasingly robust community. Collections as Data: Part to Whole sparked no less than 12 institutional experiments in collections as data implementation, spanning large public and private universities, regional universities, a historical society, an art museum, and a statewide digital library. Running parallel to these efforts, collections as data has shown up in institutional as well as state-wide strategy, and in the hiring of dedicated positions. On an international level, collections as data engagement is evidenced in national initiatives, state strategy, conferences, national library implementation, and multi-year, collaborative collections as data professional development offerings.

Call for Participation

The time has come for the community to develop paths forward together. In order to maximize a diverse representation of perspectives at Collections as Data: State of Field and Future Directions, we are opening a call for participation for individuals to attend and contribute to the event. Individuals at all levels of experience - from all regions of the world - are highly encouraged to apply. Travel, lodging, and subsistence costs for selected attendees will be supported by the Mellon Foundation.

Please apply by December 1, 2022 here.


Code of Conduct

All project activity, both in person and online, aims to foster a welcoming and inclusive experience for everyone, regardless of gender, gender identity and expression, sexual orientation, disability, physical appearance, body size, race, age, religion, nationality, or political beliefs. Harassment of participants will not be tolerated in any form. Harassment includes any behavior that participants find intimidating, hostile or offensive. Participants asked to stop any harassing behavior are expected to comply immediately. Please contact any member of the project team if you have concerns.