Far from becoming redundant libraries are playing an increasingly important role in institutions in an information age dominated by Google. This includes providing access to a wide variety of content through the digitisation of special collections which would otherwise remain hidden, not easily accessible to users and in danger of being lost – and not the ones that Google would seek to include in their digitisation activity.
One of the key assets that libraries bring to the table when mediating the provision of digitised resources is their specialist knowledge of the material and their curatorial input, which constitute great added value for teachers, researchers and learners engaging with the material.
A recent JISC Circular invites HE and FE institutions to apply for funding for “Enriching Digital Resources”. The funding is of particular relevance to institutions that wish to maximise user engagement with their resources as well as capitalise on previous or current investment in digitisation of collections. It focuses on three strands:
1. Pilot and small-scale digitisation. Proposals may focus on undertaking pilot digitisation, small-scale digitisation or a smaller feasibility study prior to larger scale activity. Alternatively, proposals may focus on completing or adding to a digital resource where there are some gaps in the content or room for expansion.
2. Enhancement of existing collections. Funding under this heading would be targeted to help promote and further develop collections that have already been digitised but are currently underused or could benefit from extra development.
3. Developing Clusters of Content. Proposals under this heading will focus on bringing together related digital resources.
More information about the call is available on the JISC web site