Interconnected: Sharing Cross-Collection, Cross-Institution Experiences

Professional Forum

Friday, April 03, 2020: 2:00pm - 2:50pm -

Heather White, Yale University, USA, Duane Degler, Design for Context, USA

Whether within one institution or a collaboration across multiple institutions, our collections are converging. Museum data is actively encouraged to be shared, integrated, and linked. Contexts and interpretations – both historic and related to current social perspectives – are desired, increasing the value of integrating archives, conservation, and interpretive research into our sites. And, most importantly, we must understand our users’ needs and long-term value of what we produce.
How do we create “cross-collection” data and content? How do we make it discoverable? How do we provide navigation, rich cross-linking, and surface relevant context? How do we provide content to others for various uses, with bridges back to our own institutions and authoritative voices? And how do we make it sustainable, without significant ongoing efforts?
This professional forum opens up discussion of the challenges and potential for cross-collection and cross-institution integrations. Following a brief framing of the scope, current research, and the challenges to be explored, the participants will organize into three groups to discuss:
– Discovery and access. Considering how to make highly connected content findable and usable.
– Cross-collection integration. Choosing methods to identify how users want to explore the context around collections, as well as building a culture of “connected cataloging” practices. Managing internal linked data capabilities.
– Cross-institutional collaboration. Facilitating a common vision across multiple institutions, harmonizing data and vocabulary for integration, sustaining contributions over time, and balancing the collaborative data resource with individual institution digital initiatives.
Participants can move among the groups or focus in on one particular area based on their own projects and needs. Toward the end, each group will present their insights to the whole, in order to find common patterns and lessons they can carry forward in their work.

Can provide if needed for professional forum.