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2 January  2002














Cross Currents No 6 Jan 2002 

A digest of cross sectoral information management events, issues and ideas in organisations, libraries, archives and museums, with special emphasis on arts and the humanities.



Council of Federal State & Territory Archives | Foundation Center


CLIR Report


H-Net | Performance in Cultural Institutions | PASIG | ARLIS/ANZ |

Ozeculture | Digital Resources in the Humanities | IAML Australia | PASIG


Keep Dancing! Project | National Library of Australia Dance Curator  



Center for Humanities, UCLA | ERPANET | Guidelines


Australia | Canada

RISM Database Online | Digital Heritage of Opera


AusStage | Australian Literature Gateway |

Birmingham Repertory Theatre Archive |

National Library of Australia | State Library of Victoria


ALIA review | CREATE review




Council of Federal State and Territory Archives

The Council of Federal State and Territory Archives (COFSTA) has announced the launch of its new website  COFSTA comprises the heads of the government archives authorities of the Commonwealth of Australia, each of the Australian States and the Northern Territory, and promote a sense of understanding and consistency in the management of government records. The website has statistics from 34 archival institutions.  [Source: Aus-Archivists]

Foundation Center

The Foundation Center's online catalogue provides access to more than 20,000 bibliographic citations and abstracts at . The catalogue, representing the holdings of the Center's 5 libraries and other sources, also has links to some full text articles, a resource that is expected to grow in the future. [Source: Librarians Internet Index]


The US Council on Library and Information Resources (CLIR), has released its report The Evidence in Hand: Report of the Task Force on the Artifact in Library Collections., an examination of the problems associated with particular media, from print and paper to audiovisual and digital; five case studies; and a summary and recommendations. 

Among recommendations is a call for development of regional repositories of artifactual collections to reduce duplication of effort, create economies of scale, and ensure that the greatest number of unique or scarce items are preserved and made accessible to researchers. The recommendations also call for the creation of standardized descriptive practices that make information about resources readily accessible through searchable databases. Strategies for specific formats-print, audiovisual, and digital-are noted, and areas for further research are proposed.

The Council on Library and Information Resources works in partnership with libraries, archives, and other information providers to advocate collaborative approaches to preserving the nation's intellectual heritage. The Evidence in Hand is available at 



H-NET Jan 2002

H-Net Technology Sessions at the American Historical Association Annual Conference, 3-6 January 2002, San Francisco  includes a number of presentations on the use of technology for historical research and scholarship. Websites: [Source: Mark Kornbluh, H-Net Executive Director]

Performance in Cultural Institutions Feb 2002

The National Museum of Australia, in collaboration with Old Parliament House, Questacon and the School of Contemporary Arts, University of Western Sydney, is holding a conference called Raising the Curtain, an inaugural forum on performance in cultural institutions, 28 Feb-2 March 2002. The conference will explore different styles of performance, from first person interpretation to full-scale theatrical productions, consider the relationship between audiences and different types of performance and explore the intellectual and theoretical context of performance in cultural institutions.  The forum aims to generate a platform for discussion and explore possible futures for ongoing dialogue from informal networking to more formal options.  The keynote speaker is Catherine Hughes, Science Theatre Coordinator at the Boston Science Museum, founder of the International Museum Theatre Alliance (IMTAL), and author of Museum Theatre: Communicating with Visitors through Drama (Heinemann, 1998). The Program includes sessions on performance in Australian cultural institutions, audience dynamics and partnerships with the theatre industry.  An optional workshop facilitated by Catherine Hughes is being offered from 10-2pm on Saturday 2 March.  Source and contact: Daina Harvey, Team Leader, Public Programs National Museum of Australia, Tel:  02 6208 5139

Performing Arts Special Interest Group Mar 2002

PASIG is holding a half day session on 21 March 2002 in conjunction with Museum Australia’s conference in Adelaide. The session will examine the governance and status of performing arts collections within a non collecting environment, eg. performing arts museums in commercially based arts centres. Speakers will include Janine Barrand developing further her impressions of European models, a representative of the management side of a performing arts centre, and a collection manager from a similar situation but not in the performing arts sector.  For details on the Museums Australia conference, March 18-22, see  For details of the PASIG conference, contact Richard Stone, PASIG,

ARLIS/ANZ April 2002

The Arts Libraries Society of Australia and New Zealand will be holding its next conference in Auckland, New Zealand at Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tamaki and the University of Auckland, 26-28 April 2002.  The program includes sessions on indigenous art information resources, collection access developments, with an emphasis on digitization projects and provenance research. Speakers will include Annamaria Poma-Swank from the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York on collection development in art museum libraries, Roger Blackley from Victoria University of Wellington on art research using "old fashioned" resources, Roger Horrocks from the University of Auckland on researching his recent biography of Len Lye, Ngahiraka Mason, curator, Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tamaki, and Maureen Lander, artist, on contemporary Maori art.  Contacts: Catherine Hammond or Gail Keefe

OZeCulture Conference May 2002

The Department of Communications, Information Technology and the Arts is holding the second OzeCulture Conference 2002, Taking the Next Step, in Sydney on 28-30 May 2002. The conference will focus on the opportunities created by the internet, digital media technology for arts production and the operation of cultural organisations.  Topics will include: digital rights management; necessity is the mother of invention - managing your cultural website on a small budget; cultural eBusiness initiatives; creating communities; new media: where the arts, science and technology meet; intellectual property, privacy and public policy issues; virtually on the seat - audience development and the Internet; managing digital content. The conference will also feature a trade fair, where information technology, web service and digital media companies will show their latest cultural-sector focussed products and services and two single-day eBusiness for the cultural sector training sessions and an intensive, two-day project management and business case development seminar.   Website: 

Digital Resources for the Humanities, Sep 2002

The Digital Resources for the Humanities Conference has called for papers for presentation at is Edinburgh Conference in Sep 8-11, 2002 []..  The conference committee seeks proposals for papers, panel sessions and posters relating to the creation and use of digital resources in all aspects of work in the humanities. Preference will be given to papers which outline innovative technical approaches or explore subject areas which have been generally neglected by the conference communities. The Committee  particularly welcomes proposals which relate to the following themes: provision and management of access; digital libraries, archives and museums; time-based media and multimedia studies in music and performing arts; other social sciences where these overlap significantly with the humanities; network technologies used to support international community programs; the anticipated convergence between televisual, communication and computing media and its effect on the humanities; information analysis, design and modelling in humanities research; knowledge representation, including visualization and simulation. Selected papers from DRH annual conferences are published  by the Office for Humanities Communication at King's College London.  See [Source: NINCH Announce].

IAML Australia & PASIG Joint Conference Sep 2002

The Australian Branch of the International Association of Music Libraries, Documentation Centres and Archives and the Performing Arts Special Interest Group of Museums Australia will hold a joint conference at the Alexander Library Building of the Library and Information Service of Western Australia in Perth, 12-14 September 2002.   The Conference will  also coincide with the Australian Composers Orchestral Forum.  [For further information: contact Allison Fyfe]


The Keep Dancing! Project, which began in 1997, ceased its active life in June 2001. A collaboration between Ausdance, the National Library of Australia and Screensound Australia, with funding from the Australia Council, the project, managed by Michelle Potter, unearthed, identified and preserved thousands of feet of rare archival dance film footage, negotiated the acquisition of significant dance materials in all formats, and established the dynamic online Australian Dance Directory. Annual reports and statistics are available on the National Library's home page -  Michelle Potter has been appointed to a newly created position of Dance Curator in the National Library of Australia with the primary task of develop the online Australian Dance Directory, established under the Keep Dancing! Project. [Source: Richard Stone, PASIG]



Center for Digital Humanities, UCLA

The University of California, Los Angeles has invited applications for Director of the Center for Digital Humanities.  As part of its mission, the Center seeks to advance the research, teaching and public service mission of the Humanities Division through the use of computing technology and new media, and coordinate and support faculty research and teaching projects that employ these technologies. The center helps focus such projects, locates personnel and funding, discovers partners both inside and outside the university, and manages the projects over time. In addition to project and course development, the Center is also responsible for E-campus, the instructional Web sites that offer on-line enhancements to the 600 undergraduate courses offered each quarter by the Humanities Division. The Center also oversees the IT infrastructure for the Division. Website Source: NINCH]

Electronic Resource Preservation and Access Network

The Humanities Advanced Technology and Information Institute (HATII) of Glasgow University has announced a  new EURO 1.2 million digital preservation initiative: ERPANET (Electronic Resource Preservation and Access Network).  The Project - an EU funded collaboration between HATII at the University of Glasgow, Schweizerisches Bundesarchiv (Switzerland), Rijksarchiefdienst (Netherlands), and the University of Urbino (Italy)) - will make viable and visible information, best practice, and skills; development in the area of digital preservation of cultural heritage and scientific objects. Specific objectives are:

  • To identify and raise awareness of sources of information about the preservation of digital objects across the broad spectrum of national and regional cultural and scientific heritage activity in Europe.

  • To appraise and evaluate information sources and documented developments in digital preservation on behalf of the ERPANET user community; and to make available results of research, projects, and best practice.

  • To provide an enquiry and advisory service on digital preservation issues, practice, technology and developments.

  • To implement a suite of six thematic workshops to bring together experts from a range of disciplines to address key preservation issues (eg.integrity and audit requirements, emulation and migration) and to initiated associated thematic discussion.

  • To build during the EU-sponsored phase a suite of eight training seminars based on best practice, and to identify where and what further practitioner training and staff development is required.

  • To develop a suite of tools, guidelines, templates for prototype instruments and best practice testbeds and case studies.

  • To stimulate further research on digital preservation in key areas and encourage the development of standards where gaps and opportunities have been identified.

  • To build ERPANET step-by-step into a self-sustaining initiative supported by those individuals and organisations which require access to digital preservation resources and information.

  • To stimulate ICT companies and software developers to incorporate some of the preservation lessons into new generations of software.

Website:, Source NINCH-Announce



A number of organisations have recently published guidelines on managing digital collections and projects,


The Institute of Museums and Library Services has published A Framework of Guidance for Building Good Digital Collections with principles and definitions for good digital objects, metadata, collections, and projects. Website: [Source DigLib]


The British Library’s National Preservation Office has published an introduction to managing digitisation projects at  The 24-page pamphlet covers topics like justifying the project, selecting materials, scoping the project, planning and managing it,  and preserving the digital images. A brief bibliography points to essential resources. [Source Current Cites].


DNER and BNSC have jointly published a report and speaker presentations from the invitational seminar, Digital Curation: Digital Archives, Libraries and e-Science, involving participants from industry, university and government research bodies, libraries and archives, at Topics covered: the OAIS Reference Model and Digital Archive Certification OAIS Ref Model; Data Curation and the Grid E-science; Curation of Digital Collections; Where Next? [Source DIGLIB]


Sun Microsystems has published the 2nd edition of its Digital Library Toolkit at



Australian National Office of the Information Economy

The Australian National Office of the Information Economy (NOIE), established as an executive agency in October 2000, has published its 2000/2001 annual report at The purpose of NOIE is to facilitate a competitive and sustainable advantage in the global information economy. The Office has been restructured into three broad groups: Information Economy, Information Industries, and Government Online, with branches representing access, regulation, business facilitation, strategy and policy, ICT industry development, international, and government. In future,  it will focus its work on communicating a coherent framework for Australia’s information economy that promotes the efficient and effective use of information, communications and technology tools for innovation and productivity growth and mobilising leadership within the Commonwealth for addressing information economy issues. 


NOIE has commissioned a series of case studies of ICT companies to highlight the strengths and capabilities of the Australian industry. More info:


NOIE has also developed as a top  level site of the Commonwealth portals initiative at:


Canadian Government boosts funding on the Internet, research and libraries

The Canadian Government, in its 2001 Budget,  boosted funding for the following Internet and information economy items. 

  •       SchoolNet / LibraryNet / Community Access Programs at an annual cost of C$40 million until 2004. The Government is also setting aside C$35 million a year for three years to support the expansion of broadband access to the Internet. The Canadian Library Association, in its pre-budget brief to the House of Commons Standing Committee on Finance argued that libraries are the best way that society has of ensuring that Canadians have access to the Internet and that "while provinces and municipalities will remain the main source of support for libraries, the federal government has an overall economic responsibility for investing in the nation's information infrastructure". For more information on CLA's brief to the Finance Committee or its recently launched Campaign for Canada's Libraries visit the CLA website ( 

  •       eGovernment. C$600 million allocated over the next four years to implement the Government's online strategy and resources and modernise the information management and information technology infrastructure of a number of government departments and agencies.

  •       CANet 4. C$110 million allocated to build CANet 4 (which includes SchoolNet, the Community Access Program, Smart Communities and Geo Connections), a new generation of Internet broadband network architecture that will link all research-intensive institutions, including many community colleges.

  •       Research. $200 million allocated to Canada's universities to help alleviate financial pressures associated with federally supported research activity at universities and research hospitals. This initiative was strongly supported by the Canadian Association of Research Libraries (CARL) in their pre-budget lobby campaign.

[Source: Canadian Library Association]



RISM Database Online

National Information Services Corporation (NISC) has announced the publication of RISM (Repertoire International des Sources Musicales) on BiblioLine. RISM will be available for subscription starting in February 2002.  Its series A/II is the most  comprehensive annotated index and guide to music manuscripts  produced after 1600, bringing together more than 370,000 works by over 18,000 composers into one database. The manuscripts are found in over 595 libraries and archives in 31 countries including: Australia, Austria, Belarus, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Great Britain, Hungary, Italy, Mexico, The Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, Portugal,  Rumania, Russia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Ukraine, Uruguay and USA. The Music manuscript database is linked to three other databases, which together hold 410,000 records and over 450,000 searchable music incipits.  RISM can also be searched simultaneously on BiblioLine with RIPM and RILM. The annual institutional subscription base price is US$795.00. A special price of US$595.00 is available for institutions in Europe. A 30-day trial will be available during Feb 2002 at  Website: Source; IAML-L]

Digital Heritage of Opera in the Open Network Environment

The Centre for Music Technology at the University of Glasgow has advertised for a Research Assistant in the above program, a European-funded project for the development of network technologies for the dissemination of Opera and Music Theatre via the new interactive digital media.  Further details at:




The AusStage national performing arts database is expected to be launched in March or April 2002, after further data entry and testing.  At the end of December 2001, the database had nearly 5000 records including events from January 2001,  information in the printed Australian and New Zealand Theatre Record (1987-1996) and indexing of programs in the National Library of Australia and in the Dennis Wolanski collection at the University of NSW Library. 

Australian Literature Gateway

The National Library of Australia has launched the Australian Literature Gateway, with information on theatre and drama, at For a brief review of the Gateway, see Digital Resources for Research in the Humanities.

Birmingham Repertory Theatre Archive Database

The Performing Arts Data Service has announced that the database of archive holdings of the Birmingham Repertory Theatre is available at: The database provides information about the Birmingham Repertory Theatre company's performances (including full cast lists) as well as finding aids to objects such as playbills, prompt scripts and other ephemera preserved at Birmingham Central Library. [Source Performing Arts Data Service].

National Library of Australia

A project to list all the files in the National Library's PROMPT collection is nearing completion and will be made available via the Library's home page in 2002 at . The PROMPT collection comprises the Australian theatre programs and theatre ephemera arranged under a variety of headings in one sequence - main headings used include companies, entrepreneurs, solo performers, touring productions, playwrights.. [Source Richard Stone, PASIG].

State Library of Victoria

The State Library of Victoria has completed minimal level records for all the program files in its collection. The records may be searched via the Library's online catalogue at [Source, Richard Stone, PASIG]




ALIA Review

The Australian Library and information Association has embarked on the LISEKA, a review of Library and Information Science Education for the Knowledge Age. The project kicked off with a national forum in Melbourne on 16 November 2001. Consultations will continue in 2002 with the aim of  creating an agreed national framework and approach for the provision of effective career-long education and professional development opportunities for information workers, particularly those working in libraries. Website:


The Museum & Library/Information Services Industry Training Package is the set of national qualifications that can be awarded in the Museums and Libraries industry by TAFE and other registered training providers. The qualifications are made up of groups of competencies that relate to real work functions in museums and libraries.


The Package was endorsed by the Australian National Training Authority (ANTA) for national implementation in 1999 with a condition that it be reviewed within three years. CREATE Australia, the national industry training advisory body for the cultural industries is now undertaking a comprehensive review of the package to make sure it better meets the needs of industry, apprentices, trainees and registered training providers.


Phase One of the review will involve consultation with users and a survey seeking the views of a wide cross-section of people affected by the Training Package. Data gathered from consultations, surveys responses and other research will be analysed to develop an agreed set of recommendations for the redevelopment of the Training Package. Timeframe: Nov 2001-July 2002]


Phase Two of the review involves the redevelopment and submission for endorsement of the Training Package based upon the recommendations from Phase One. Timeframe: Late 2002


To register interest in participating contact CREATE Australia phone 02 8399 2655, fax 02 8399 2677 or email [Source Australian Museums Forum]


This issue of Cross Currents compiled by Paul Bentley



The Wolanski Foundation would be grateful for feedback on the scope, format and content of this bulletin..


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