UCL Qatar hosts Dr. Christy Henshaw, Digital Production Manager of the Wellcome Collection for a public talk entitled, ‘Designing a digitisation strategy: thoughts on digitisation and selection for cultural heritage institutions.’
5 February 2018
UCL Qatar, in collaboration with the Qatar National Library, had the pleasure of hosting Dr. Christy Henshaw, Digital Production Manager of the Wellcome Collection
for a public talk entitled, ‘Designing a digitisation strategy: thoughts on digitisation and selection for cultural heritage institutions.’
Dr. Christy shared insights into the value and impact generated from digitization strategies and producing digitized content. How do we know what we should digitize from our collections? Who are we looking to support? Who is the audience at the end of the day? Based on surveys for digitization (Enumerate survey conducted in 2017), results show that collections are made accessible to the public for various reasons, but the survey reflected the view that digitization was seen as most valuable towards academic and educational purposes.
Dr Christy highlighted the importance of forming strategies to help maximise the potential for achieving impact from digitisation activities. For example, ‘knowing your collections and your audiences are important factors towards creating a digitization strategy.’ Ultimately, she explains that ‘research libraries share a common goal: to see real impact come from high-quality experiences by their users. More and more integral to this is the conversion of physical materials into digital formats for broad access and use, but this task is often an overwhelming one. The backlog can be enormous. When we do digitise, we have great expectations in terms of quantity and quality of use. Often our reality does not match that expectation – or not in the long term.’
Thank you to Dr. Christy Henshaw of the Wellcome Collection and to the Qatar National Library for being such gracious hosts.
Christy Henshaw, PhD. Digital Production Manager, Wellcome Collection (London, UK). Christy manages the large-scale digitisation programme at the Wellcome Collection Library, a library for the history of medicine based in London. During this time her team have made some 200,000 works from the Wellcome’s historical and modern collections available online, including nearly 500 manuscripts from their historic Arabic manuscript collection. Her team looks after long-term strategic digitisation as well as responsive “on-demand” services.