You are invited to participate in the following research project.

Context and Digitization: Towards a New Model for Archives

Nearly a decade ago, in his inaugural address as president of the Society of American Archivists, Nicholas Burckel painted a vision of the future in which significant scholarship would be conducted exclusively via the internet, using digitized resources. That future has already been realized in some disciplines.

Scholars in these disciplines are now discussing the impact of digital resources on their fields. The concern for authenticity and accurate digital representation are common concerns. All researchers, both academic and amateur, have become increasingly reliant on digital information sources. Reference sources such as Wikipedia register millions of hits daily as the internet becomes the primary destination for those seeking information.

Archives are making more of their resources available in digital format, leading to investment in a vast array of archival digitization projects. Archival materials are fundamentally different from those found on Wikipedia and in most libraries. Archival materials are original records created in the course of events to document a transaction. They encompass a wide range of formats and genres that are today being digitized and made available by archives via the internet.

Are these resources being fully optimized? You are invited to participate in a series of surveys to elicit your thoughts on the effectiveness of digitized materials currently available on the internet and to evaluate a theoretical model of digitization, which will be developed over the next year. There will be two stages of survey, during late 2008 and again during 2009. During each stage you will be asked to thoroughly and considerately complete a short questionnaire. The results of these will be compiled and circulated to each participant. At this time you will have to opportunity to amend your responses, if you wish, in light of the general group response. It is estimated you will be able to complete each questionnaire within 1 to 2 hours. Some participants may be contacted for interviews.

Both archivists and archival users are sought for this study. Archivists should be involved in digitization or digital reference at their institutions. The ideal archival researcher conducts research both in the traditional manner and digitally.

This research project is being undertaken as part of the requirements of the PhD (Information Studies) degree at Edith Cowan University in Perth, Australia.

Should you wish to participate, please respond directly to the address below by 1 November 2008.

Mark Vajcner

DigCCurr II is now recruiting for 2009 Ph.D. Fellows in Digital Curation

The School of Information and Library Science (SILS), University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (UNC-CH), is seeking applicants interested in Digital Archiving and Curation and in earning a Doctoral Degree. These Fellowships are funded by the Institute for Museum and Library Services.

What the 3-Year Fellowships Offer:

    * A 20 hr/wk position as a Research Fellow in Digital Curation
    * An annual stipend of $19,000
    * In-state tuition and health coverage
    *Annual enrichment funds of $800
    *Extensive opportunities to meet key leaders in the Digital Curation research and practice arenas through workshops and symposia to be held at UNC.

About DigCCurr II:

The Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS)-funded project, “DigCCurr II: Extending an International Digital Curation Curriculum to Doctoral Students and Practitioners” seeks to develop an international, doctoral-level curriculum and educational network in the management and preservation of digital materials across their life cycle. This project will prepare future faculty to perform research and teach in this area, as well as provide summer institutes for cultural heritage information professionals already working in this arena.

Applying for the Fellowship:

To apply for the fellowship, please follow the regular application procedures found on the SILS Ph.D. Admissions page ( The deadline for these materials is January 1, 2009.

In addition to the required written statement of your intended research focus, we ask that you write a separate essay elaborating on these goals and how they are related to the goals of DigCCurr II. Please see the DigCCurr II web page for more details ( Please send this essay in an email to Dr. Helen Tibbo (, Dr. Cal Lee (, or Heather Bowden (, DigCCurrII Project Manager and Carolina Digital Curation Doctoral Fellow, no later than February 15, 2009. Earlier applications are encouraged. Please note that we are only able to accept applications from United States Citizens at this time.

For more information on Carolina Digital Curation Doctoral Fellowship opportunities, send e-mail to Dr. Helen Tibbo (, Dr. Cal Lee (, or Heather Bowden (, DigCCurrII Project Manager and Carolina Digital Curation Doctoral Fellow.

Interested applicants may also direct correspondence to:

DigCCurr II Fellowships
School of Information and Library Science
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Campus Box 3360 Manning Hall
Chapel Hill NC 27566-3360


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