National Heritage Digitization Strategy: 21 projects approved for funding across Canada

October 16, 2018 – Vancouver, British Columbia – National Heritage Digitization Strategy

The National Heritage Digitization Strategy (NHDS) is providing $1 million to support 21 projects by archives, libraries and documentary heritage institutions throughout Canada. The recipients of the Digitization Canadian Collection funding call were announced today in an event held at the Vancouver Public Library.

This opportunity was made possible thanks to a generous gift from a private foundation.

The following 21 projects will be funded by the NHDS:

  • Colony, Confederation and Country: Accessing the National Story Through the Lens of Prince Edward Island’s Historical Newspapers (Robertson Library, University of Prince Edward Island), Charlottetown, Prince Eward Island ($45,685)
  • The Robin Collection: Digitization, Access and Preservation (Musée de la Gaspésie), Gaspé, Quebec ($43,742)
  • Early Photographs of the Innu and Atikamekw Peoples (Université Laval Library), Québec, Quebec ($28,742)
  • Forging Fur-ways: the North West Company Fur Trade Collection (McGill University Library) Montréal, Quebec ($15,963)
  • Set of 146 Early Books in Indigenous Languages (1556-1900) (Bibliothèque et Archives nationales du Québec), Montréal, Quebec ($22,511)
  • Digitizing Past Issues of Bulletin d’histoire politique (Association québécoise d’histoire politique), Montréal, Quebec ($6,525)
  • Le Son des Français d’Amérique : Mixed Traces and Memories of Continents (Cinémathèque québécoise), Montréal, Quebec ($86,812)
  • Digitizing and Publishing Heritage Collections on Canadian History (Document Management and Archives Division, Université de Montréal), Montréal, Quebec ($81,141)
  • Discovering the Heritage of the Association canadienne-française de l’Ontario (1910–1990): A Living Memory! (Centre for Research on French Canadian Culture, University of Ottawa), Ottawa, Ontario ($86,805)
  • Digital John Buchan, 1st Baron Tweedsmuir (Queen’s University Library), Kingston, Ontario ($65,033)
  • The MacGregor Collection (The Canadian Canoe Museum), Peterborough, Ontario ($9,925)
  • Digitizing Inuit Artistic Heritage (Inuit Art Foundation), Toronto, Ontario ($80,786)
  • Healing and Education Through Digital Access (Algoma University), Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario ($86,890)
  • First Nations and Métis Oral History Digitization Project (Provincial Archives of Saskatchewan), Regina, Saskatchewan ($8,700)
  • Indian History Film Project Digitization (First Nations University of Canada), Regina, Saskatchewan ($19,414)
  • The Idea of the North: Exploring Evidence of Resilience and Change (University of Saskatchewan), Saskatoon, Saskatchewan ($83,058)
  • Smoke Signals, Satellites and Servers: Digitizing the ANCS Television Archive (Sound Studies, Faculty of Arts, University of Alberta), Edmonton, Alberta ($36,744)
  • Chambermaids to Whistle Punks: The Labour and Lives of B.C. Women, 1890–1970 (Satellite Video Exchange Society), Vancouver, British Columbia ($16,098)
  • BC Gay and Lesbian Archives Audiovisual and Graphic Material Digitization Project (City of Vancouver Archives), Vancouver, British Columbia ($71,015)
  • What Becomes Canada: Digitizing Narratives of Exploration, Settlement, and Contact (Vancouver Island University Library), Nanaimo, British Columbia ($17,015)
  • Native Communications Society Digitization Project (Northwest Territories Archives), Yellowknife, Northwest Territories ($86,796)

Quick facts

  • The NHDS envisions a future in which digital access to Canada’s diverse documentary heritage is comprehensive, ubiquitous and has a profound impact on our country’s culture, education, research and innovation.
  • Launched in 2016, the NHDS engages Canadian memory institutions and Canadian creators in leveraging expertise and resources to facilitate the digitization, preservation and discovery of Canadian documentary heritage.
  • Archives, libraries, historical societies, Indigenous organizations and governments, genealogical organizations, universities and colleges, professional library and archival associations, and museums with an archival component were eligible to apply for funding.
  • Eligibility criteria for the funding call were developed by the NHDS Steering Committee, and the proposals were evaluated by an independent advisory committee of nine experts from  academic and documentary institutions in Canada and abroad
  • Library and Archives Canada (LAC) provides secretariat support to the NHDS and administered the funding call on behalf of the NHDS

Quotes

“The NHDS was thrilled to have this opportunity to support the digitization of Canadian documentary heritage. Thanks to this funding, Canadian memory institutions will better protect their collections, and Canadians will have greater access to stories that reflect the depth and diversity of our country.”

– Martha Whitehead, Chair, National Heritage Digitization Strategy

“With this funding, we will be able to preserve and make accessible the text documents of one of the largest companies in the history of Canada. We will also be able to reveal some previously unreleased content, which will contribute to our understanding of an area of Canadian history that is still largely unknown.”

– Nathalie Spooner, Director General, Musée de la Gaspésie

“The City of Vancouver Archives will use its NHDS funding to increase the profile and accessibility of the recently-donated BC Gay and Lesbian Archives collection. Over 7400 photographs, 2000 posters and 150 audiovisual works will be digitized and made freely available online as a result of this funding.”

– Heather Gordon, City Archivist, City of Vancouver Archives

Related links

About the National Heritage Digitization Strategy

The National Heritage Digitization Strategy is a growing coalition of memory institutions working together to leverage expertise and resources to support the digitization, preservation and discovery of Canadian documentary heritage.

Fall update from the National Heritage Digitization Strategy

Dear colleagues,

We would like to update you on some of our recent progress on the National Heritage Digitization Strategy (NHDS).

Funding call – We had a remarkable response to our funding call. We received 213 applications, requesting almost $10M in funding. Our external advisory committee worked hard over the summer to evaluate the proposals and we will be announcing the successful recipients in the coming weeks. We thank everyone for their participation in this call. Although not all of these proposals can be funded, you helped to articulate the demand for a national digitization program. We will be using this information as we continue to seek additional investment in the strategy.

Business plan – We drafted a business plan to provide more information on our goals, activities and tasks. The plan also articulates our vision and mission to engage the Canadian library, archive and museum community and Canadian creators in sharing expertise, to facilitate the digitization, preservation and discovery of Canadian documentary heritage.

Upcoming event – Please join us in Vancouver for a half-day digitization session  we are co-hosting with the Canadian Research Knowledge Network (CRKN). The session will provide a forum to discuss shared goals of digitization, access, and preservation of our national documentary heritage. The event takes place October 16th.

Survey results – Earlier this spring we asked you for your opinions on how to prioritize the digitization of Canadian cultural heritage material. The survey received a high response and identified newspapers as the highest priority, and genealogical and high-interest material as additional priorities. See the full results from the survey  on our website.

Get Involved in the NHDS

We would like to invite you to get involved in the NHDS by:

  1. Pledging  your support for the NHDS
  2. Expressing interest in becoming a member of the NHDS Steering Committee – The term for the inaugural NHDS Steering Committee is coming to an end. If you would like to participate on the committee and help lead this exciting initiative, please see the website and complete our online form by October 4th, 2018.
  3. Joining the Technical Working Group – At a spring workshop, the NHDS identified the need for a technical working group. Do you have particular experience and perspective to bring to the group? To learn more, please see the website and complete our online form by October 4th, 2018.

If you have any questions about our work, please contact us.

Warm regards,
Martha Whitehead, Chair
On behalf of the NHDS Steering Committee

Call for nominations: NHDS Steering Committee

Nominations to be submitted by October 4th, 2018

The National Heritage Digitization Strategy (NHDS) Steering Committee is inviting nominations from Canadian archivists, librarians, curators, researchers, creators, and genealogists to fill positions on the NHDS Steering Committee. We are particularly interested in applications from Indigenous or other traditionally under-represented groups.

Members will be drawn from across Canada and will be chosen based on relevant experience and perspective. The group meets approximately nine to ten times per year via teleconference and one to two times a year in person. Any costs incurred to attend meetings with be paid for by the Steering Committee members and/or their organizations. To learn more, please see the Steering Committee Terms of Reference and the NHDS Business Plan.

Individuals may nominate themselves or another. Nominations should be sent via our online form no later than October 4th, 2018.

Please contact us with your questions.

Call for nominations: NHDS Technical Working Group

Nominations to be submitted by October 4th, 2018

The National Heritage Digitization Strategy (NHDS) Steering Committee is inviting nominations from Canadian archivists, librarians, curators, researchers, creators, and genealogists to fill 8-12 positions on the NHDS Technical Working Group.

Members will be drawn from across Canada and will be chosen based on relevant experience and perspective. The group is expected to meet three times per year via teleconference and one time a year in person. To learn more, please see the Working Group Terms of Reference and the NHDS Business Plan.

Individuals may nominate themselves or another. Nominations should be sent via our online form no later than October 4th, 2018.

Please contact us with your questions.

Andrea Mills
Kathryn Ruddock
Co-chairs of the NHDS Technical Working Group

Apply for NHDS funding to digitize your collections

Dear colleagues,

The National Heritage Digitization Strategy (NHDS) Steering Committee is thrilled to announce the launch of the Digitizing Canadian Collections funding call. This one-time opportunity will provide funds to organizations to digitize, make accessible and preserve documentary heritage material of national significance.

Archives, museums, libraries, universities, colleges and other cultural heritage institutions can apply to receive funding of up to $100,000.

Read more about the funding call and about the NHDS. The deadline to apply is June 12th, 2018. This initiative is made possible thanks to a generous gift from a private donor.

We encourage you to apply and to share this news with your networks. Through digitization, we can advance knowledge and innovation in Canada and contribute to a better understanding of our identity.

Warm regards,

Martha Whitehead, Chair On behalf of the NHDS Steering Committee

Contribute to the priorities of the NHDS

Dear colleagues,

First, we would like to update you on some of our recent progress on the National Heritage Digitization Strategy (NHDS):

Upcoming funding program – Thanks to the generous support of an anonymous donor, we will be launching a funding program in the near future. The program will distribute $1 million to cultural heritage organizations in Canada to support digitization. More information will be available soon.

Newspaper pilot project – The first set of newspapers from our pilot project has been digitized and is available online. In total, we were able to digitize and make available almost 600 issues of Windspeaker and we expect to add another 1000 issues from two other publications soon. The project was made possible with funding from the Salamander Foundation.

Changes to the Steering Committee – Congratulations to Sandra Singh on her new position with the City of Vancouver. We thank her for her inspired contribution as NHDS Chair during the initial phases of this project and wish her the best in her new role.

At the January meeting of the Steering Committee I, Martha Whitehead, Vice-provost (Digital Planning) and University Librarian of Queen’s University, was named as the new chair. I look forward to working with the committee during this exciting period for the NHDS.

The committee would also like to signal other recent changes to its membership including: Maureen Clapperton as the new representative for Bibliothèque et Archives nationales du Québec (BAnQ); and Karen Fudge-Jensen as the new representative for the Royal BC Museum.

You can see a list of the entire Steering Committee on our website.

We also continue to explore collaboration and funding opportunities, test and expand the discovery platform, and work with our international partners on RightsStatements.org.

Now we need your help

“Canada is a multinational country, defined by diversity as much as by common values. This diversity ranges from the language, culture, and self-governance traditions of Canada’s First Nations to the language, cultural, legal, and other traditions of the French and English, as well as successive waves of immigrants and refugees who have added their mother tongues, customs, and perspectives to Canada. As a result, the ‘content’ of the national heritage digitization strategy is diverse and constantly evolving through dialogue among the rich, and sometimes competing, narratives of memory, as well as through the recovery of knowledge that has sometimes languished in the margins.”

(from the draft NHDS Content Strategy)

The NHDS has released a draft content strategy to help guide potential funding projects, a discovery platform and organizational decision-making. We need your help in determining the priorities of the NHDS. Please respond to the following survey by April 6th, 2018.

We invite you to learn more about the NDHS by visiting our planning website.

Warm regards,

Martha Whitehead, Chair

On behalf of the NHDS Steering Committee

 

 

A fall update from the Steering Committee

Dear colleagues,

It’s been almost a year since the National Heritage Digitization Strategy (NHDS) Steering Committee was formed and a lot has happened since then. The committee thought we would update you on some of our most recent work and let you know of different ways your organizations can get involved.

We’ve made great progress on some of our foundational projects. These include:

Newspaper pilot project – With the generous funding of the Salamander Foundation we undertook a newspaper digitization project. We consulted with organizations across Canada and are digitizing a small collection of Indigenous newspapers. We will share more news on this project soon.

Content strategy – We have been working hard to develop a content strategy that stresses maximum inclusivity and access to identify shared principles and find a starting point. The draft strategy will be ready to be shared soon.

Rights statements – This spring the NHDS joined an international consortium on RightsStatements.org led by DPLA and Europeana. We are working with them and representatives from Australia and India on ways to make the statements more global and test their applicability in Canada.

Discovery tool – We have developed a prototype discovery tool to help identify and find digitized material across the country. The prototype is still in development but will be shared with the community for feedback in the coming months.

Funding – We have secured some funding from the private sector and continue to explore more funding opportunities.

Spreading the word – We’ve also been making presentations and talking to people to try to gather input and support for the strategy. This summer your organization may have been contacted to pledge your interest in the strategy to help attract funding. As of September, 46 organizations have pledged their intent to partner with NHDS. If you would like to do the same, please visit our online pledge form.

In the coming year, we will be furthering this foundational work and also exploring new funding opportunities, gathering and sharing best practices and identifying training. You can learn more about where we are by visiting our planning website.

If you have any questions about our work or would like to get involved, please contact us.

Warm regards,

Sandra Singh, Chair
On behalf of the NHDS Steering Committee

An update on the National Heritage Digitization Strategy

Dear Colleagues,

In October 2016, Library and Archives Canada hosted the National Heritage Digitization Strategy (NHDS) Foundational Assembly – it was such an inspiring gathering with tremendous experience, expertise, and goodwill. Arising from this assembly, the NHDS Steering Committee has commenced work on further refining a draft action plan and planning for broader community engagement and involvement in the confirmation of the plan and its implementation.

This message is intended to provide a brief update to our colleagues across the country – those who were able to attend the Summit and those who were not – on progress since the Foundational Assembly and to invite colleagues with interest in the NHDS to connect with us and – we hope – get involved.

Launch of a planning website

We have launched this planning website to keep you informed of our activities. The site is looking for a more permanent home.

Seeking input into the draft action plan

During a recent session at the Ontario Library Association (OLA) Super Conference, members of the Committee presented our draft action plan . The plan outlines high-level activities to guide the work of the Committee for the next three years.

We are now seeking your thoughts on the plan – What is missing? What particularly excites you? How could the activities outlined in the plan help your organization? How do the directions connect into other digitization partnerships you have?

Action invited: Please share your comments on this site or send them to us.

In the future, we will move to more structured approaches to gathering feedback, such as surveys. For now, please bear with us through this start-up phase as we use this unstructured approach.

Most recent meeting of the Steering Committee

The Steering Committee met in Toronto in early February to discuss how to advance the action plan. Minutes of the meeting will be available soon. Minutes from previous Committee meetings can now be accessed on our website. The next meeting of the Steering Committee is being planned for the middle of March.

*****

We know there is a lot of excitement about a national strategy and we appreciate the patience demonstrated by our colleagues across the country as we have worked to take these very initial steps. Soon, we will share more information about how people and organizations can become involved beyond providing feedback on the draft plan. In the meantime, if you are interested, please do let us know what areas you are interested in and we will do our best to hook you into related efforts asap.

Warm regards,

Sandra Singh, Chair
On behalf of the NHDS Steering Committee