The Alexandria Archive Institute received a grant of $250,609 from the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) and the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) for the project Enhancing Humanities Research Productivity in a Collaborative Data Sharing Environment. The project observed creators and users of online cultural heritage collections to determine how they use current tools in their research and to identify areas where innovations can improve Web-based scholarship of cultural heritage collections. In collaboration with the Information and Service Design (ISD) Clinic at UC Berkeley’s School of Information, we worked intensively with data creators and users in small working group settings to document their needs and experiences working with cultural heritage data sharing systems. We drew on the diverse experiences and insights shared by representatives from multi-organizational and interdisciplinary stakeholder groups, including museums, active field projects, public archaeology, cultural resource management, specialists, and junior and senior scholars, to explore how current Web technologies may better meet the needs of these groups. This research guided developments to Open Context (, an online data publication system for archaeology, small museums, and other field researchers. Other outcomes include guidance for ‚good practice‛ in developing Web-based collections and data publication systems. This report details activities and accomplishments over the course of the project, from January 2009 through March 2011.


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