Documentation of the German-language cultural heritage from Eastern Europe

[Contribution to the Strategy paper on the digitization of the German-language cultural heritage from Eastern Europe:]

A reliable overview on a cultural heritage is provided by an elementary bibliography which is indicating the digitizable sources. In a first step the already existing bibliographical publications are to be evaluated. If major gaps of important, bibliographically undocumented materials are identified, these should eventually be resolved. In a second step the bibliographical data is to be digitized, merged and transferred to a database which is finally giving the necessary overview on the sources which provably existed. The third step is to verify their present existence by confronting the bibliographical data with the physically confirmed stocks in libraries, archives and even private collections. For this purpose a topography is to be compiled which delivers information on the current location of stocks which are relevant for digitization.

This task can be achieved by the conducting of surveys addressed to the institutions which (potentially) are holding these stocks. It could be implemented as follows: 1) performing a survey among libraries, archives and even private collections with the request to indicate their stocks of the minority heritage and to estimate the quantity; 2) asking for the institution’s official agreement to make the stocks accessible for a future digitization; 3) inquiring the preferred basic modalities of digitization (e.g. in-house, interlending, division of labour etc.). Based on this documentation the framework for the preparation of future projects is set and a substantial reliance for a promoter is provided.


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