Research and experimentation are underway in libraries, archives, and research institutions on various digital strategies, including computational methods and tools, to manage "Collections as Data." This involves new ways for librarians and archivists to manage, preserve, and provide access to their digital collections. A major component in this ongoing process is the education and training needed by information professionals to function effectively in the 21st century.
Accessible and transferable infrastructure is a key requirement in creating a network of collaboration for information professionals to fully realize the full potential of managing "Collections as Data."
Elements needed include:
1. Open source research and educational platforms to remove barriers to access to curation tools and resources. These are needed to deliver and share computational educational programs.
2. Creation of a Cloud-based student-learning environment.
3. Development of Open Source software architectures that use computational infrastructure.
4. Exploration of new pedagogies for educating librarians and archivists in computational methods and tools.
5. Establishment of a community of practice for developing collaborative projects, and liaising with the wider international iSchool community and practitioners in the field.
Our “Blue Sky” proposal seeks to explore a number of these challenges (infrastructure, computation, collaboration, learning) that stimulate the iSchool research community and have the potential tojumpstart international collaborative networks.
The goal is to establish an international computational network for supporting librarians and archivists, akin to the existing Sloan Foundation funded “Data Curation Network”, which seeks to model a cross-institutional staffing approach for curating research data in digital repositories.