Ohio Preservation Council Symposium-Basic Considerations for Digitization: Providing Access to Special Collections

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September 1, 2005 by J. Johnson

OPC LogoFriday, September 16, 2005, 9 a.m. – 3 p.m.
Medical Heritage Center, the Ohio State University

Program Information & Registration Form

Every library, museum, or historical society contains unique materials of great
value to researchers and local communities. Special collections require more
thoughtful management and greater care than do popular collections that generally do
not attain the same level of importance or permanence.

The content of this symposium is to serve as a basic introduction to evaluating
whether to undertake a digitization project, and if so, how to begin. The importance
of preservation and access are the focus. Digitization is not an answer to preservation, but a means to enable access to information so the original can be preserved. Many issues need to be considered before embarking on a digitization project, such as how to: select materials appropriate for digitization; determine the appropriate digitization
method when there are no uniform standards; maintain the integrity of the original
both during and after digitization; ensure and maintain the quality of the digitized material; and provide long-term access to digitized material. The costs involved digitizing and providing access; preserving the original material; bringing digitized information forward with each hardware and software technology advance are other issues requiring careful thought and planning.

Four highly respected individuals with a wide variety of special expertise will provide presentations identifying key issues associated with digitization. In the afternoon they will form a panel to answer questions generated by the morning presentations. Registrants are also encouraged to submit questions in advance of the symposium.

Attendees will achieve a better understanding of the issues surrounding digitization
projects of any scale, big or small. New-found confidence in how to proceed effectively
with the digitization decision-making process will be of benefit to institutions of all
sizes pondering whether or what to digitize.


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