Before you start a project

UC Berkeley Library - Digitizing Locally Held Content

Digitizing locally held collections (text, finding aids, images, audio, video, databases) is a good way to both preserve valuable materials, as well as to make them accessible to a much wider audience.

The UC Berkeley Library Applications & Publishing Group (LAP) helps selectors in The Library and the Affiliated Libraries to plan and realize digitization projects.

Preliminary Questions

There are several key issues that need to be decided before a project to digitize material can move forward:

  • Is the material free of copyright restrictions? Or do we hold copyright on this material? Note: For out-of-copyright books, The Library will rely on the copy created by various partnerships, including the Google and OCA mass digitization projects, and HathiTrust to make these accessible, and duplicate local digitization can be avoided.
  • What funds will pay for this project? Options include selector-managed 19942 funds; selector-managed endowment/gift funds; selector-secured grant funding.
  • Is there existing metadata?  If not, who will create the metadata? Options include: the selector, selector-supervised graduate students or interns, etc.

What constitutes a digitization project?

Digitization of any collection has some essential elements:

  • Creating digital facsimiles of each part (e.g., each page in a book)
  • Creating metadata and digital objects (e.g., organizing images for each page into “the book”)
  • Making it accessible (could be one or more of the following):
    • Getting it cataloged in OskiCat, and MELVYL
    • Making it accessible from UC Berkeley Library’s server
    • Depositing copies of digital objects with projects beyond Berkeley (e.g., UC’s Online Archive of California, Digital Scriptorium, Project Euclid, etc.)
  • Sending a version to UC’s Digital Preservation Repository

Ready to start?

  1. Contact Lynne Grigsby, Head of Library Applications & Publishing. Lynne can help scope the project and provide some estimates of cost.
  2. Once a project is scoped and funded, you will be partnered with a LAP project manager who will help you through every step of the project.