Last week I had the pleasure of delivering a presentation on digitisation planning for museums at the very first meeting of Cornwall Museums Partnership’s new Digital Network Group (CDNG).
The presentation (see above) shared our best practice advice for museum archivists and collection managers who were considering digitising parts of their holdings; from deciding what to digitise first (or indeed at all!), to practical preparation of the materials and ensuring you’re getting the best value for money from suppliers.
Digital Needs Survey results
The event was well attended by representatives from more than 30 museums, archives, and galleries in the area. A particular highlight was organiser, and Digital Coordinator, Charlotte Todd’s morning presentation – which shared some key findings from the results of CDNGs Digital Needs Survey.
One of the numerous interesting statistics to come from the Survey data, and which really reflects how prominent digitisation has become, was that 91% of the respondents had digitised at least part of their collections.
Barriers to Museums digitising
Following Charlotte’s presentation, the attendees engaged in a very interesting group discussion around the barriers preventing museums and archives from digitising. Perhaps unsurprisingly, finding sources of funding was identified as the biggest challenge (something we have tackled in a previous funding sources guide); with very limited human and time resources also cited as challenges.
Speaker Sarah Maddern, Digital Engagement Officer at the Southwest Museums Development Program, went on to offer advice on entering funding bids and applications that can assist museums in going digital.
The day was then concluded by Melissa Mercer of Pixxcell, whose final presentation showcased the company’s unique map-based image display software platform.
Following the talks during the day I was approached by several of the delegates for advice on some truly exciting upcoming digitisation projects, and am very much looking forward to watching these progress!
Further Digitisation project planning advice
For more detailed information and advice on planning digitisation projects read our best practice planning article. Or if you could use (free) planning advice for a specific digitisation project please do get in touch with me on 01536 713834 or [email protected].