MITH’s strategic mission, as stated on the About MITH page, is to be the “University’s [of Maryland’s] primary intellectual hub for scholars and practitioners of digital humanities, electronic literature, and cyberculture” [sic]. Put another way, a local center for all things related to digital knowledge in the humanities. This means that we go out and spread out expertise in development of our own scholarly digital tools, the world of Digital Humanities, and our passion to support that world’s importance. In the past, I have been an example of this by attending events in the European Union, Canada, and closer to home in the District of Columbia.
The mission of Galleries, Libraries, Museums and Archives CAMP (better known as GLAMCamp) clearly overlaps with the mission of MITH. GLAM is an international initiative to produce case studies and outreach for cultural heritage institutions to open up their data and make it more accessible to the online public. A list of their more recent projects can be found here. Within the scope of their mission are organizing public outreach events such as attending Wikimania, setting up GLAM conferences, and setting up and hosting GLAMCamps.
What can the University of Maryland and MITH benefit from such events as these? First, we broaden our knowledge base and network. The more institutions know about us, the more people we have supporting our mission, and, likewise, the more we are supporting others’ missions. Second, MITH is not just a center for research – it is a development office for scholarly tools. Things such as workflow scenarios for Bulk Uploading to Wikimedia Commons and a citation engine for Wiki citations are things that scholars as well as GLAMs are interested to see available. Often it becomes necessary to work outside of the office and with other like minds to achieve this kind of development. Already, we are discussing presenting the proceedings and ideas from GLAM to the McKeldin Library administrators.
Looking ahead, GLAM promises to be an exciting opportunity for MITH as well as the research world.