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Describing museum collections: metadata schemas for CLD Pre-conference Workshop, mda Conference Common Threads, Edgbaston, Birmingham, 3 September 2002.

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Presentation on theme: "Describing museum collections: metadata schemas for CLD Pre-conference Workshop, mda Conference Common Threads, Edgbaston, Birmingham, 3 September 2002."— Presentation transcript:

1 Describing museum collections: metadata schemas for CLD Pre-conference Workshop, mda Conference Common Threads, Edgbaston, Birmingham, 3 September 2002 Pete Johnston UKOLN, University of Bath Bath, BA2 7AY UKOLN is supported by:

2 Pre-conference Workshop, mda Conference, Edgbaston, 3 September Describing collections: metadata schemas for CLD CLD in museums Encoded Archival Description (EAD) RSLP Collection Description model and schema

3 Pre-conference Workshop, mda Conference, Edgbaston, 3 September Collection-level description in museums Existing CLDs often informal, unstructured –For presentation to human reader –Little standardisation of content Or where structured, specific to project/service application? Limited capacity for –exchange and reuse of collection-level metadata –cross-searching of distributed collection-level metadata –sharing of tools

4 The Encoded Archival Description DTD

5 Pre-conference Workshop, mda Conference, Edgbaston, 3 September Encoded Archival Description (EAD) N.B. Only a simplified overview! SGML/XML Document Type Definition for encoding archival finding aids Owned/maintained by Society of American Archivists/Library of Congress Hierarchical finding-aids Structured document approach Designed to encompass broad range of existing practice –flexibility v interoperability issues? –retrospective v prospective (Shaw, 2001)

6 Pre-conference Workshop, mda Conference, Edgbaston, 3 September Structure of an EAD-encoded document EAD Header Description of archival collection/fonds Description of original finding aid Description of encoded finding aid Description of sub-fonds Description of item DSC

7 Pre-conference Workshop, mda Conference, Edgbaston, 3 September Structure of an EAD-encoded document EAD ead header archdesc filedescprofiledesc c01 c02 dsc

8 Pre-conference Workshop, mda Conference, Edgbaston, 3 September Structure of an EAD-encoded document

9 Pre-conference Workshop, mda Conference, Edgbaston, 3 September Core descriptive elements in EAD did –unitid –unittitle –origination –physdesc –physloc –unitdate –abstract Basic descriptive information –identification –title –agent responsible for creation/accumulation –size and form –locator –creation date –brief summary

10 Pre-conference Workshop, mda Conference, Edgbaston, 3 September Core descriptive elements in EAD admininfo –acqinfo –custodhist –accessrestrict –userestrict –altformavail –accruals –appraisal –processinfo Background descriptive information –immediate source –custodial history –conditions affecting availability –conditions affecting use –alternate forms –anticipated additions –info about determining archival value –info about processes applied

11 Pre-conference Workshop, mda Conference, Edgbaston, 3 September Core descriptive elements in EAD bioghist scopeandcontent add –bibliography –otherfindaid –relatedmaterial –separatedmaterial controlaccess –subject –persname –corpname –geogname (etc) Information about creator Narrative description of range/coverage –Description of supplementary material –works based on/about material –other catalogues, guides etc –related material –material related by provenance but separated –Access points

12 Pre-conference Workshop, mda Conference, Edgbaston, 3 September EAD and non-archival collections Some use of EAD for describing non-archival collections –Museums in the Online Archive of California (MOAC) –Natural History Museum, London –Archival –Library –Specimen Is EAD a collection description schema? Are the semantics of EAD specific to archive or archive-like collections?

13 The RSLP Collection Description Model and Schema

14 Pre-conference Workshop, mda Conference, Edgbaston, 3 September Research Support Libraries Programme Support for academic researchers –disclosure of collections –discovery of/access to collections –collaborative management of collections Collections in RSLP –projects describing primarily collections of physical items (library/archive) –projects also describing digital catalogues (which describe physical items) –collections of metadata records –projects creating new digital collections of collection descriptions –collections of metadata records

15 Pre-conference Workshop, mda Conference, Edgbaston, 3 September RSLP Collection Description project Project –funded by RSLP, with support from OCLC, Sept 1999 – Sept 2000 –collaboration between –Michael Heaney (Oxford) –Andy Powell, Michael Day (UKOLN) Aims –means of consistent collection description in RSLP –minimise duplication of effort in projects –simple, high-level description –aligned with other metadata work

16 Pre-conference Workshop, mda Conference, Edgbaston, 3 September A Model for Collections Michael Heaney, An Analytical Model of Collections and their Catalogues –Implementation independent Based primarily on a library and archival view of collection... –but intended to be applicable across wide range of collection types Identifies –Entities –Attributes/properties of entities –Relationships between entities Functionally (IFLA FRBR) concerned with : –Finding (access points for discovery) –Identifying (sufficient for user interpretation)

17 Pre-conference Workshop, mda Conference, Edgbaston, 3 September RSLP Model (simplified view) ContentCreator creates Collector Owner collects owns Administrator administers ItemProducer produces is-embodied-in Collection is-gathered-into Location is-located-in

18 Pre-conference Workshop, mda Conference, Edgbaston, 3 September Entities in RSLP Model Content –an intellectual creation, without reference to an instantiation Item –a concrete realisation (physical/digital)of Content Collection –an aggregation of items –implementer to make pragmatic decisions about level of aggregation –functional granularity

19 Pre-conference Workshop, mda Conference, Edgbaston, 3 September Entities in RSLP Model Location –the physical or digital place where a collection is held –physical location - e.g. a library or museum –postal address –digital location i.e a network service –URL of Web site, Z39.50 target details –Note: physical item at single location, but digital item available through multiple services

20 Pre-conference Workshop, mda Conference, Edgbaston, 3 September Entities in RSLP Model Agent –a person or corporate body related to the collection or location –initiates actions –has rights, controls access/use Collector –gathers items into a collection Owner –has legal possession of a collection Administrator –has responsibility for the physical or digital environment in which a collection is held

21 Pre-conference Workshop, mda Conference, Edgbaston, 3 September External relationships Collection to collection –Has-Part, Has-Complement –Has-Association –Has-Version Collection to publication –Has-Publication Collection to collection description –Is-Described-By

22 Pre-conference Workshop, mda Conference, Edgbaston, 3 September A Schema for Collection-Level Description RSLP Collection Description Schema –structured set of metadata attributes –simple description of subset of entities in Heaney model –Collection –Location –Agents –attributes based on Dublin Core Element Set (including refinements) where possible RSLP CD schema supports creation of unitary collection description RSLP CD instance –set of linked descriptions of several resources

23 Pre-conference Workshop, mda Conference, Edgbaston, 3 September RSLP CD Schema as subset of model ContentCreator creates Collector Owner collects owns Administrator administers ItemProducer produces is-embodied-in Collection is-gathered-into Location is-located-in

24 Pre-conference Workshop, mda Conference, Edgbaston, 3 September RSLP CD Schema : agents Collector Owner collects owns Collection administers Administrator Location is-located-in

25 Pre-conference Workshop, mda Conference, Edgbaston, 3 September RSLP CD Schema : isPartOf relations Collector Owner Collection Administrator Location CollectionLocation is-part-of

26 Pre-conference Workshop, mda Conference, Edgbaston, 3 September Collection attributes general attributes title, identifier, description, strength, physical characteristics, language, type, access control, accrual status, legal status, custodial history, note subject attributes concept(s), object(s), name(s), place(s), time(s) date attributes contents date range, accumulation date range

27 Pre-conference Workshop, mda Conference, Edgbaston, 3 September Location attributes general attributes name, identifier, access conditions, see also location (physical) postal address, postcode, country location (digital) locator

28 Pre-conference Workshop, mda Conference, Edgbaston, 3 September Agent attributes general attributes name, organisation, role, phone, fax, , agent history

29 Pre-conference Workshop, mda Conference, Edgbaston, 3 September Relation attributes relations between collection and location hasLocation/isLocationOf relations between collection and agent collector (creator), owner relations between location and agent administrator relations between collections (external) hasPart/isPartOf, hasDescription/isDescriptionOf, hasAssociation hasPublication

30 Pre-conference Workshop, mda Conference, Edgbaston, 3 September Data entry guidelines Produced by RSLP CD project Guidance for content of RSLP schema attributes –especially encoding schemes –language –dates –subject terminologies for CLDs? Associated list of collection types –terms split into four areas –type, curatorial environment, content, policy/usage Extended collection types for museums?

31 Pre-conference Workshop, mda Conference, Edgbaston, 3 September A Schema for Collection-Level Description Can be expressed using RDF model –RDF/XML syntax for serialising descriptions Web-based creation tool Implemented by several RSLP projects –subject-based or regional databases of CLDs –presently no cross-RSLP search Some application to museum collections –Crossroads –Find It In London –potentially Cornucopia, SWMLAC?

32 Pre-conference Workshop, mda Conference, Edgbaston, 3 September A Schema for Collection-Level Description RSLP CD Schema –A means of creating simple, high-level descriptions for wide range of collections –Not a substitute for existing richer schemas for CLD –A Dublin Core for collections? –Useful for museums?

33 Pre-conference Workshop, mda Conference, Edgbaston, 3 September Acknowledgements UKOLN is funded by Resource: the Council for Museums, Archives and Libraries, the Joint Information Systems Committee (JISC) of the UK higher and further education funding councils, as well as by project funding from the JISC and the European Union. UKOLN also receives support from the University of Bath where it is based.

34 Pre-conference Workshop, mda Conference, Edgbaston, 3 September References Encoded Archival Description (EAD) Elizabeth Shaw, Rethinking EAD: balancing flexibility and interoperability, New Review of Information Networking, Vol 7 (2001) RSLP Collection Description project ( ) Michael Heaney, An Analytical Model of Collections and their Catalogues (Jan 2000)


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