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MITH and University of Maryland Libraries Collaboration Selected as a Host Institution for Inaugural National Digital Stewardship Residency Program

The Maryland Institute for Technology in the Humanities (MITH), in partnership with the University of Maryland Libraries, is pleased to announce our selection as a National Digital Stewardship Residency (NDSR) host site.

This program offers an opportunity for recent graduates of Master’s degree programs in relevant fields to complete a nine-month residency at institutions actively engaged in the acquisition, stewardship, and preservation of born-digital materials. The residency will begin in September 2013, with a two-week workshop at the Library of Congress. Prospective applicants should visit the NDSR website for application information.

MITH and the University of Maryland Libraries are proud to join such organizations as the Folger Shakespeare Library, The National Library of Medicine, and the Smithsonian Institution Archives among others as host institutions for this timely program. The survival of important collections—particularly born-digital collections—depends on their discoverability, accessibility, and usability by diverse constituencies. The interfaces and the service models that welcome interested researchers are important points of human connection between collections and communities. As more and more institutions add born-digital materials to their collections, they will need individuals capable of developing and implementing policies and access models where none existed previously. A residency at MITH will help provide the necessary background to successfully articulate issues surrounding access of born-digital archival collections and the expertise to provide solutions. In particular, the Resident will have an opportunity to engage with unique born-digital literary collections from two prominent authors at the leading edge of experimental electronic literature. At the same time, the Resident will contribute important research and be well positioned to provide leadership on issues that every library and archive will confront in the coming years.

As an NDSR Host, MITH and the Libraries will provide guidance and resources for the Resident to prototype access points to born-digital materials (including their physical carriers) to better enable researchers to discover and work with the Libraries’ born-digital collections. Matthew Kirschenbaum, Associate Director of MITH and Associate Professor in the Department of English at the University of Maryland, and Joanne Archer, Special Collections Librarian at the University of Maryland Libraries along with staff from MITH, the Human-Computer Interaction Lab of the University of Maryland iSchool, and the University of Maryland Libraries will work with the Resident to aid them in gaining demonstrable experience with reference models, user-centered design, and prototyping. MITH Director Neil Fraistat observes that “the NDSR is a key component of the groundbreaking partnership MITH and the Libraries initiated in 2012, to collaborate on research and services related to born-digital collections. The Resident will be embedded with this interdisciplinary, cross-divisional team, the Born-Digital Working Group.”

For more about the potential scope of an NDSR residency at MITH, see our formal host statement.

 

The Maryland Institute for Technology in the Humanities (MITH) is a leading digital humanities center that pursues disciplinary innovation and institutional transformation through applied research, public programming, and educational opportunities. MITH has been a partner and MITH directors have served as PI or co-PI for a range of projects on born-digital cultural heritage, digital forensics, digital curation, and the preservation of computer games, interactive literature, and virtual worlds.

The University of Maryland Libraries conduct a broad range of digital projects including digitization of materials from the UMD Libraries’ special collections and archives as well as digital preservation programs and planning. The Libraries take an active part in usability analysis and design activities pertaining to accessibility and findability of our digital collections and our Web content.  For a complete list of past and ongoing projects, please consult http://digital.lib.umd.edu/.