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Unpublished Paper
Digital Collections Task Force Report
  • Barbara Lewis, University of South Florida
  • Brian Falato, University of South Florida
  • Richard Bernardy, University of South Florida
  • Pete Reehling, University of South Florida
  • Ilene Frank, University of South Florida
  • University of South Florida, University of South Florida

Libraries, museums, archives, and similar institutions worldwide are digitizing their physical collections and creating born‐digital resources, all in an effort to make them accessible to people everywhere. The digitization program at the University of South Florida Tampa Library has been active since the mid 1990s. Today it is expected that, as the Library proceeds with its ARL collections initiatives, the demands on this program will increase dramatically.

In order to meet these new demands, changes are necessary to increase the productivity and capacity of the operations and to improve the accessibility and visibility of the collections. These challenges and their associated risks will be addressed by:

• Establishing and implementing project management and production scheduling practices;

• Providing adequate metadata cataloging resources;

• Evaluating existing projects to understand their research value and, in some cases, making hard decisions regarding their continued use of digitization resources;

• Analyzing the curriculum and the research interests of our on campus users to better target and market digital collections;

• Collaborating with teaching faculty and the C21TE Media Innovations Team to create course specific instructional modules that can be repurposed to general needs;

• Developing programs and methods to better inform and instruct librarians, faculty, and students about our digital collections;

• Investigating new means to increase capacity, such asoutsourcing and shift operations;

• Merge DCS departments to achieve higher efficiency;

• Improving existing and developing new channels for digital collections access;

• Documenting procedures, cross‐training department staff, and ensuring backup for critical operations; and

• Assessing the quality, usage, and impact on research of our digital collections.

It may be noted that the acquisition of new equipment is not included in the above. Other options exist for increasing the capacity of our digitization operation and these should be fully exhausted before new equipment is purchased, especially in the current budget situation. In addition, new staffing requirements that were not previously projected in the ARL collections initiatives' business plan are limited to an Assistant Digital Collections System Administrator.

Publication Date
Fall November 14, 2008
Citation Information
Barbara Lewis, Brian Falato, Richard Bernardy, Pete Reehling, et al.. "Digital Collections Task Force Report" (2008)
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