• Tanya Jensen
4. semester, Historie, Kandidat (Kandidatuddannelse)
Utilizing User Participation and Crowdsourcing in archives is a trend that seems to grow in the archival sphere. Some scientists argue that user participation and crowdsourcing is a tool or a method, in stead of a subculture. This dissertation explores if an analysis of user participation and crowdsourcing influences the digitízation-projects sustainability.
So far, investigations into crowdsourcing and user participation as seen from the archivist's point of view has been limited, and this dissertation hopes to add to the understanding of user participation and crowdsourcing as a tool and a subculture that the archivist has to provide attention to.
Firstly, this paper provides an outline of how scientists thus far have used the two similar concepts of User Participation and Crowdsourcing, before defining how the concepts will be understood in this paper.
The methodology behind this paper largely contains to obtaining the necessary information from the archives participating in this project. Using the contextually based scientific interview-methodology, it is possible to understand the archivist's surroundings from the archivist's points of view. Thereby, this method can provide me with information such as; (1) how four Danish archives include user participation and crowdsourcing in projects digitizing large amounts of primary source-materials, (2) why they choose to do so, and finally (3) what the archives hope to gain in using a group of volunteers to digitize the primary sources. Furthermore, I can obtain information about the entire "chain of custody" from the ideas of a digitization-project emerges, to the final product is presented.
The archivists interviewed for this dissertation all agree, that they could not have created the project without using volunteers, primarily for monetary reasons. Still, the archivists show different approaches to how they can use volunteers, and in what ways.
One of the strongest benefits of using volunteers in digitization-projects, is the amount of information and data being made available online, allowing more users to get acquainted with the material. On the other hand, it does take a lot of time and effort for the archivists to create the optimal products for the volunteers to understand what is asked of them without getting taught by an archivist, leading and maintaining the projects and, lastly, quality-assessing and evaluating the projects.
Securing the quality of the digitization-projects seem to be a working process, though several of the archivists participating in the interviews state, that the quality-assessments usually take place at the beginning of the projects before the volunteers get involved.
Even though only one archivist actually used the word sustainability in regards to the projects, it is clear by the context, that all archivists hope – an even expect - that the projects will become sustainable.
Even though an analysis of user participation and crowdsourcing does not have an effect on the sustainability of the project, the dissertation shows the importance of making an informed decision in regards to how and why an archive will want to engage volunteers.
Udgivelsesdato30 aug. 2017
Antal sider65
ID: 261174888