Turning Library Records into Data: A Conversation & Workshop


Tuesday, December 9, 2014, 1:00-4:45pm


Library Company of Philadelphia Cassatt House, 1320 Locust Street Philadelphia, PA


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As more and more hackers, students, and scholars are engaging in creative projects that require "big data," this two-part session invites librarians and archivists to think through ways to expose their collections to interpretation and analysis by digital humanities scholars, students, and local hackers, and to make those collections easily mappable.


Laurie Allen, Coordinator for Digital Scholarship and Services, Haverford College
Doreva Belfiore, Digital Projects Librarian, Temple University 
Nabil Kashyap, Librarian for Digital Initiatives and Scholarship, Swarthmore College
Delphine Khanna, Head of Digital Library Initiatives, Temple University
Nicole Scalessa, IT Manager, the Library Company of Philadelphia


Part 1: 1:00-3:00PM


In the first half of this workshop, we will highlight some example uses for library data, and lead a discussion about how Galleries, Libraries, Archives, and Museums can make their collection information available for re-use by scholars and activists.  We will focus on concrete steps that librarians and archivists can take to expose their collection data for reuse, including small, lightweight options and more robust, larger scale possibilities.


Discussion topics will include:

·         "What is our data?"

·         "What can we usefully export from our various systems?”

·         "What format and what documentation should we provide to make the data most accessible?"

·         "What are some example questions that our data might help us address?"

·         “Once I’ve opened my data, where should I put it?”

·         “What is the DPLA, and is Pennsylvania going to start participating in it?”

Part 2: 3:15-4:45PM


The second part of this workshop will help catalogers and metadata managers develop ways to add geospatial metadata to collection records that refer to places (For example, works about the built environment or that include addresses or specific locations.)


Discussion topics will include:

·         “What successful models of geospatial metadata are currently in use that advocate for wider implementation?”

·         “What are some current geospatial metadata standards?”

·         “What resources are available for learning more?”

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Nicole H. Scalessa

IT Manager

The Library Company of Philadelphia

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215-546-3181 (W) 215-546-5167 (F)

610-731-8755 (Work Cell)