Digitisation Projects: Funding Options
What to Fund?
Funding digitisation projects is more than the cost of the actual digitisation process. Every aspect of the project can be supported financially, or have costs offset by outside funding. Specific areas may include:
- Conservation of the material
- Scanning of material
- Image processing
- Metadata description of materials
- Clearing intellectual property rights
- Equipment / software
- Website design
- System and functionality construction costs
- Long-term maintenance / curation costs
As a broad rule of thumb:
- 1/3 of the costs will be for project planning, preservation preparation, management, and oversight;
- 1/3 of the costs will be for archival description and indexing, metadata;
- 1/3 of the costs will be for the actual digitisation.
- Understanding the costs of digitisationJISC commissioned report published in 2009. This provides a useful and detailed outline of all the components and stages of a digitisation project which can then be used to support funding allocation.
It may be wise to outsource elements of a digitisation project, especially where equipment, facilities or expertise is not already in place.
Some key questions for a vendor are:
- Hardware and software used?
- Quality control procedures?
- Turnaround time?
- Delivery and pick-up?
- Environmental controls?
- Qualifications of project manager?
- References for similar work?
Support for Funding Applications
UCD Library is working with UCD Research to articulate the supports that the Library can provide for funding applications; these will be incorporated into the UCD Research webpages and are listed below:
- UCD Library can provide infrastructure, curation and other related services to ensure long-term digital archiving through the UCD Digital Library, which is a Trusted Digital Repository, certified by the Data Seal of Approval. For more details see: libguides.ucd.ie/digitisation/hosting
- UCD Library can assist in the drawing up of data management plans which may be required by funding bodies. More information on data management plans is available at: http://libguides.ucd.ie/data/checklist_plans
- UCD Library can support researchers in helping them to comply with funders’ open access requirements. More information available at:http://libguides.ucd.ie/data/funders
- UCD Library can support researchers in the provision of metrics to enhance their funding applications. More information available at: libguides.ucd.ie/bibliometrics/
Digitisation projects can have an almost infinite number of objectives, all of which can impact on their sustainability needs. Examining two typical digitisation scenarios may help to explore this further:
1. Many digitisation projects are funded over one, two or three years to create a finite digital resource. These projects may not be updated again in terms of content but on-going access to the finished resource is required by its users. This type of activity can be termed as long term access from a short term project. It is unlikely that funds to facilitate the required maintenance and on-going access to outputs would be available from the same source beyond the initial funding period.
2. A second broad type of digitisation project is one that evolves over time and is continually growing. Projects of this nature often seek continuation funding in order to fulfil their objectives.
- Jisc InfoKit: Digitisation Funding and SustainabilityThis Infokit provides a starting point for considering the issues necessary to create and build a business model that will support sustainability of digitisation and digital collections.
Potential Sources of Funding
- Find a Funding Opportunity on UCD Research intranetUCD login required. Lists funders and provides access to the Research Processional funding database
- UCD Seed Funding SchemeUCD login required. Provides practical ‘seed’ support for projects and ideas that are challenging and ambitious, as well as those that lead to new knowledge and capabilities.
Some key funders are listed below - this is a guide only: conditions, application criteria, deadlines and other detailed information can be found on a funding organisation's own website.
- European Community FundingThere are many funding initiatives in the European Community that could provide grants for capital projects and programmes for archives. One important strand is the Digital Agenda for Europe.
- The Digital Agenda for EuropeImportant strand of EU funding.
- European Union's Horizon 2020: Industrial Leadership Opportunities programmeAims to speed up development of the technologies and innovations that will underpin tomorrow's businesses and help innovative European SMEs to grow into world-leading companies.
- EU Horizon 2020 Societal Challenges ProgrammeAnother funding initiative that may be of relevance.
- EU Education, Audiovisual and Culture Executive Agency (EACEA)Offers a variety of funding opportunities, including for projects that foster creativity, innovative approaches to creation, and new ways of ensuring spillover effects to other sectors.
- EU Prize for Cultural Heritage/Europa Nostra AwardsCelebrates and promotes best practices related to heritage conservation, management, research, education and communication.
- Alliance of Digital Humanities Organisations - ADHOOffers Lisa Lena Opas-Hänninen prizes to young scholars. These prizes enables candidates to host conferences and recognise young scholars who have contributed in a significant way at a humanities conference using digital technology.
- Andrew W. Mellon Foundation"The Foundation endeavors to strengthen, promote, and, where necessary, defend the contributions of the humanities and the arts to human flourishing and to the well-being of diverse and democratic societies. To this end, we support exemplary institutions of higher education and culture as they renew and provide access to an invaluable heritage of ambitious, path-breaking work."
- Wellcome Trust Humanities and Social Sciences Funding SchemesFurther details are available on the UCD Research Intranet.
- Wellcome Trust - Investigator awards in humanities and social sciencesUCD login required.
- Wellcome Trust - Research resources in medical humanities (2 schemes)UCD login required.
- Arts and Humanities Research Council - AHRC (UK)There are a number of funding streams that are run by the AHRC that will support the creation of digital resources. Further detailed information can be found on the AHRC website.
- OCLC ResearchOCLC Research and ALISE, the Association for Library and Information Science Education, annually collaborate to offer the Library and Information Science Research Grant Program. The overall goal is to promote independent research, particularly work helping to integrate new technologies that offer innovative approaches, and research that contributes to a better understanding of the information environment and user expectations and behaviours.
- Foras na GaeilgeBody responsible for the promotion of the Irish language throughout the whole island of Ireland
- Department of Culture, Heritage and the GaeltachtUseful for Government Publications
- Arts CouncilUseful for Government Publications
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