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Tuesday, October 8 • 4:30pm - 5:00pm
Digitized Okanagan History: Aggregating the Regional Archival Record with Arca/Islandora

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For the last two years the Digitized Okanagan History (D.O.H.) project has used the Arca platform provided by the B.C. Electronic Library Network to provide access to digitized historical material from numerous archives and museums in the British Columbia interior. Arca, built on Islandora, has supported the goals of D.O.H. since its inception, which include enhancing discoverability of under-utilized historical material to support all levels of research, and providing the infrastructure necessary to allow small community organizations to participate in a multi-institution collaboration. The University of British Columbia Okanagan Campus Library has provided leadership in the creation and compilation of digitized photographs, documents, maps, audio recordings and publications and D.O.H. now includes over 62,000 digital objects drawn from twenty-three participating repositories.

Value is assigned to archival materials because they are instrumental; their primary function is to do work rather than tell stories. At the same time, stories do emerge by virtue of the essential links that accrue between documents and between groups of documents. In physical space, these documents are aggregated into logical groups based on the conditions of their creation. Often, these complex lateral and hierarchical relationships are difficult to enact in the online environment.

Islandora architecture provides comprehensive access to materials collected under the banner of D.O.H. and scaffolds the provenance-based, hierarchical arrangement inherent to archival collections. While D.O.H. represents an aggregation of materials from various sources, D.O.H is itself in turn one among many digital repository spaces included in Arca. The project has already realized the significant benefits of open source software in taking advantage of new programming created by other Islandora partners and have also been able to develop our own programs to make our own processes much more efficient.
This presentation will describe the challenges and rewards of working with a group of diverse memory institutions to bring unique historical resources to the Internet and describes the attributes of Islandora that has allowed us to make this important collaboration possible, including team workflow design and automating XML formatting of MODS metadata, progress toward standardization of multi-level expressions using relatedItem fields and customization of Solr indexing, Islandora’s object sharing function, and translation of archival descriptive structures to Islandora object entities.



Christopher Hives

University Archivist Emeritus, University of British Columbia
avatar for Paige Hohmann

Paige Hohmann

University of British Columbia Okanagan

Tuesday October 8, 2019 4:30pm - 5:00pm PDT
Harbour Centre, Joseph & Rosalie Segal Centre 1400-1430 515 W Hastings St, Vancouver, BC V6B 5K3