Digital projects have been an integral part of the services that Rutgers University Libraries have provided over the past decade. Making some of our resources available online adds to the discovery and accessibility of those holdings, providing a valuable service to our patrons. The digitization of physical items also provides an additional layer of preservation, protecting the original item from additional wear, while ensuring the content lives on.
In light of this, the Digital Projects Template Working Group was formed in September 2017 to streamline and simplify the process for individual units, empowering them with the knowledge to embark on their own routine digital projects as their resources permit. We’ve worked hard during this time to document what types of items and collections make up a potential “routine” project; provide technical information on file formats and digitization standards; offer up minimum required descriptive metadata; and provide recommendations on rights statements. With this simplification documentation, we hope that there will be less of a bottleneck for routine digitization projects.
While the Digital Projects Template Working Group has completed their work, we realize that libraries also need guidance about the process to begin carrying out this work. Cabinet determined that a group will develop a workflow for routine digital projects. That effort is already under discussion.
Central units will provide support for these routine digital projects in the areas of digital preservation assessment, accessibility, and search portal and website creation. Shared User Services can consult with directors and project managers to answer questions about whether a digital project is routine, or perhaps more complex. We encourage everyone to visit our website and review the recommended guidelines for digital projects.