Cultural institutions and Web 2.0
Middleton, Michael R. & Lee, Julie M. (2007) Cultural institutions and Web 2.0. In Fourth Seminar on Research Applications in Information and Library Studies (RAILS 4), November 30th, 2007, RMIT University, Melbourne. (In Press)
The document reports upon an exploratory survey of the approaches that Australian cultural institutions are implementing to meet Web 2.0 challenges. It is given context by a review that is made of Web developments in order to characterize Web 2.0 applications. A sample of applications that have been undertaken internationally and locally are described under the headings ranging from business resources through to exhibitions, professional development and youth outreach in order to explore strategies for implementation. The applications serve to introduce business and technical issues that have arisen, including those involved in forming partnerships with peer institutions and with major Internet services. A discussion section follows in which challenges and opportunities relating to management and software support are identified under the headings: Access, Audiences, Authority, Collaboration, Current Awareness, Metadata, Policy, Publishing, Records retention, Rich Web applications, Seeding, Skills and Statistics. These are seen as common to those convergent areas of application where large repositories are endeavouring to enhance the digital access to their records and information artefacts, and engage patrons further. Each area represents a prospective domain of investigation for research institutions or the cultural institutions themselves. A conclusion summarises these findings with respect to the role that cultural institutions can play in improving access to and involvement with the cultural heritage.
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