archival archaeology: unearthing finds about archives and special collections users

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Presented at SCA Annual General Meeting 2013, 13 April 2013, Berkeley, California (USA)


  • 1. Unearthing finds about archivesand special collections usersEllen Eckert, OCLC Research

2. Our groupBruce WashburnSoftware EngineerSan Mateo, CAEllen EckertResearch AssistantPortland, ORMerrilee ProffittProgram OfficerSan Mateo, CAJennifer SchaffnerProgram OfficerSan Mateo, CAJackie DooleyProgram OfficerSan Mateo, CAMarc BronInternSan Mateo, CA 3. Connects people toprimary sourcesMore than1.7 millioncollectiondescriptions 4. 2006RLG and OCLC combineArchiveGrid testedand launched2011Subscription-free versionof ArchiveGrid launched2004RLG studies archives andspecial collections users1999RLG launchesArchival ResourcesArchiveGrids history 5. 6. Our 2011 survey 7. 14 questionsApril 27-May 25Targeted researchers$50 Amazon gift card!Each question allowed commenting 8. Scope 9. 1.Who are the researchers and what are they like?2.What resources do researchers useand how do they find them?3.How do researchers search online?4.What do researchers want to know from their search? 10. Archives and special collections aredefined as library and archivalmaterials in any format, generallycharacterized by their value, physicalformat, uniqueness or rarity.For example: rarebooks, manuscripts, photographs, institutional archives including digitalitems. 11. 695 surveysdone (81%) 12. Respondentsfacultygraduates/post gradsgenealogistsunaffiliated scholars(36%)(30%)(29%)(26%)208177172154 13. Discovering new websites and other research resources 14. I also find it useful tospeak with mycolleagues and advisorabout resources thatmay be relevant orprovide a goodjumping off point.- graduate student 15. Im on Facebook, anduse it, but do notgenerally find newresearch related sourcesthere. Twitter though isa constant stream ofnew information. museum curator 16. Sharing new websites and other research resources 17. When I want toshare a researchresource withfriends, I email thema link.- unaffiliated scholar 18. Valuable web features 19. Over 80% of survey respondentsidentified librarians andarchivists, when answering thequestion Is there a particulartype of user whose comments,recommendations, etc. you findmost valuable? 20. Unaffiliated scholars: what is the intended purpose of your research?Research purposePersonalPublication 21. LivinghistoryperformerTutorMetaldetectingexplorer BloggerArtistWriterExhibitdesignerEventplannerTeacherArchives, library,museum, historicalsociety employeePresenterModelshipbuilderChurchmemberForensicengineerWorkingprofessionalVolunteerFilmmakerConsultantJournalistCuriouspersonDocumentarymakerFamilymemberRetireeHistoric homestour guide 22. Now what? 23. WriteEmbedDigitizeEmailTalkSocialize 24. Sharing dataTopicWeb


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