Breaking boundaries, creating connectivities: enabling access to digitized museum collections

Kist, C. and Tran, Q.-T. (2021) Breaking boundaries, creating connectivities: enabling access to digitized museum collections. In: Rauterberg, M. (ed.) Culture and Computing. Interactive Cultural Heritage and Arts: 9th International Conference, C&C 2021, Held as Part of the 23rd HCI International Conference, HCII 2021, Virtual Event, July 24–29, 2021, Proceedings, Part I. Series: Lecture notes in computer science (12794). Springer: Cham, pp. 406-422. ISBN 9783030774103 (doi: 10.1007/978-3-030-77411-0_26)

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Abstract

Museum staff as gatekeepers to cultural heritage are central to enabling or constraining user interaction with museum objects. However, organizational barriers frequently hinder staff's ability to invest in expanding user access to digitized collections. In this chapter, we analyze staff practices that help create online opportunities for user engagement, which we argue is a process of actively expanding and negotiating infrastructural boundaries of connective capacities. These boundaries constitute and expose an “installed base”, which refers to the backbone of infrastructure, and the existing practices and norms from which work takes place. Drawing on two case studies, our analysis suggests that changes to the infrastructure, including the expansion of digitized collections and tools, builds on and is shaped by the installed base. By centering user needs and leveraging their place in diverse heritage networks, staff are able to overcome infrastructural boundaries that shape and hinder practices of designing for access. This study illustrates, in particular, the ways in which staff are compelled to negotiate perceptions of what constitutes both an “authentic” museum object and a professional museum role in order to enable user access to digitized collections.

Item Type:Book Sections
Status:Published
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Kist, Ms Cassandra
Authors: Kist, C., and Tran, Q.-T.
College/School:College of Arts > School of Humanities > Information Studies
Publisher:Springer
ISBN:9783030774103
Published Online:03 July 2021
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2021 Springer Nature Switzerland AG
First Published:First published in Culture and Computing. Interactive Cultural Heritage and Arts: 9th International Conference, C&C 2021, Held as Part of the 23rd HCI International Conference, HCII 2021, Virtual Event, July 24–29, 2021, Proceedings, Part I: 406-422
Publisher Policy:Reproduced in accordance with the publisher copyright policy

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