Our method for the influx of digital collections
Our content partners’ digital collections vary in size, and it’s not always feasible to feed everything in at once. That’s why we also organise waves alongside a continuous influx for some partners.
We developed this method after running several pilot projects with content partners from various sectors. We got to know the Museum of Industry’s expectations and discovered the workflow used by Focus-WTV for example. All of these projects have helped us shape our processes for the influx of digital collections.
We organise this influx in waves whereby we always send out an open call for content partners to register so we can include their content in a structured way. The selected partners can then enter these waves after following our training aimed at teaching them how to prepare (part of) their collection so it meets the conditions required for sustainable preservation in the meemoo archive.
We started sending out two of these open calls a year, for our content partners to register, in 2019. Six content partners are generally selected per request, based on the information we receive via the registration form. After the selection, we plan a start-up meeting and can begin preparations for an operational launch.
Each part of the project is thoroughly tested and validated. We used a fixed number of milestones for this: exploration, testing, trial run and production.
For the first milestone we look at the content of the digital collection and associated metadata. Together with the content partners, we create a metadata mapping so that all the useful information can be incorporated in the meemoo data model to ensure the collections are findable and re-usable. After this exploration phase, we test the process with a limited set of files. In the next phase – the trial run – we implement this on a larger scale in a test environment in the meemoo archive system (MAM). If this goes well, we proceed to production: the actual influx of the digital collection.
The entire process, which we call a wave, has a lead time of six months. But digital archiving is a continuous activity. Even after this process, an organisation can continue to provide partial digital collections to meemoo and update metadata, as long as the same conditions are met. This means our partners can store their content with us securely, without always needing to go through a new open call.