Vanderbilt Libraries Hosts ‘Cultural Heritage at Scale’ Symposium on June 2

Exploring the ethical dimensions of “crowd-sourcing with a human face” is one of the goals of the “Cultural Heritage at Scale” symposium sponsored by Vanderbilt University Libraries and held Friday, June 2. The all-day event is open to scholars, students and other interested individuals, and HART’s VRC staff attending are Millie Fullmer, Shelby Merritt, and William Sealy.

Following opening remarks by University Librarian Valerie Hotchkiss, the morning session featured Julie Allen, postdoctoral associate, Florida Museum of Natural History, “History, Challenges and Next Steps in Citizen Science Transcription Efforts” and Matthew Lincoln, data research specialist, Getty Provenance Index Remodel Project, “Remodeling data AND people: Publishing the Getty Provenance Index® as LOD.”

Workshop leaders offering hands-on training in various technologies are Lindsey Fox, GIS coordinator, Vanderbilt University Libraries, “Introduction to Ushahidi” and Steve Baskauf, Vanderbilt senior lecturer in biological sciences, “Introduction to Bioimages.”

Others scheduled to speak in the afternoon session are Eric Schmalz, community manager, US Holocaust Museum, “Will it Work? The Great Citizen History Experiment,” Daniel Fabbri, assistant professor, Vanderbilt University Medical Center, “Crowd-Sourcing Clinical Chart Reviews,” and concluding remarks by Clifford Anderson, associate university librarian for research and learning.

The symposium is funded by the Jean Acker Wright University Library Staff Development Fund of Vanderbilt University and sponsored by the Semantic Web Working Group with funding from the Vanderbilt Institute for Digital Learning.

Previous milestones in Vanderbilt’s efforts to support research into the evolving digital environment for higher education have included partnering with the Council on Library and Information Resources in 2012 to form the Committee on Coherence at Scale for Higher Education to examine emerging national-scale digital projects. The committee also fosters strategic thinking about how to rigorously manage the transition from analog to digital in higher education. The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation awarded a strategic planning grant to Vanderbilt in 2014 to support the committee’s initiatives. Understanding the opportunities and challenges related to building sustainable national-scale digital humanities projects was a primary goal of the “Cultural Heritage at Scale” symposium last June (2016). Such projects being examined have included the HathiTrust, the Digital Public Library of America, and the Digital Preservation Network.

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