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Funded Projects Query Form
43 matches

Grant programs:Research and Development*
Date range: 2016-2022
Sort order: Award year, descending

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PR-284350-22

University of South Carolina, Columbia (Columbia, SC 29208-0001)
Greg Wilsbacher (Project Director: May 2021 to present)
Song Wang (Co Project Director: March 2022 to present)
Jun Zhou (Co Project Director: March 2022 to present)
“Virtual bench: a hybrid research and computation platform for digital surrogates of motion picture films”

A Tier II project to develop two specialized open-source software tools, Virtual Bench Research Platform and Virtual Bench Compute, for improving the preservation and material study of digitized film.

Motion picture film is more than an image. While the history of cinema provides ample evidence that the film industry from its beginnings strove to promote the illusion of an immaterial presence illuminating a screen in a darkened theater, the reality of film’s physical presence rolled through projectors in booths, weighed down shipping containers as it was shuttled from one theater to another, and fell to the cutting room floor during editing. The residue of a century of filmmaking (theatrical and non-theatrical, professional and amateur, documentary and fiction, news and nonsense) now resides in film archives once or twice removed from the industries and communities that produced the content. How this large collective archive will live on to be studied by scholars of the future remains a question without a satisfactory answer. The University of South Carolina seeks a $349,106 award to fund a two-year project that will push the boundaries of possibility for scholarly access to motion picture film elements surviving in film archives. We propose a two-pronged project that will demonstrate the inherent value of digitizing the entirety of a film element, known as a full overscan, to create a digital surrogate of the material motion picture film object.

Project fields:
Film History and Criticism; History, General; Media Studies

Program:
Research and Development

Division:
Preservation and Access

Totals:
$349,106 (approved)
$349,106 (awarded)

Grant period:
5/1/2022 – 4/30/2024


PR-284351-22

Wayne State University (Detroit, MI 48201-1347)
Krysta Ryzewski (Project Director: May 2021 to present)
Donald Lafreniere (Co Project Director: February 2022 to present)
Daniel Trepal (Co Project Director: February 2022 to present)
Hamtramck Historic Spatial Archaeology Project

A Tier I project to develop a prototype Historic Spatial Data Infrastructure (HSDI) that links archival, archaeological, and geospatial data associated with Hamtramck, Michigan.

The Hamtramck Historic Spatial Archaeology Project seeks Tier 1 Research & Development funding to support early-stage development of a Historic Spatial Data Infrastructure (HSDI) that will be among the first attempts to link archival, archaeological, and geospatial data across time and space. Over 18 months, the Hamtramck Historic Spatial Archaeology Project team will produce a prototype HSDI based on the case study of the Old Hamtramck Center site. The Hamtramck HSDI will have two components: the back-end data infrastructure of the HSDI and a front-end digital deep map of Hamtramck. The HSDI will advance the humanities by demonstrating how seemingly disparate strands of historical knowledge can be evaluated, integrated and represented in a digital, open access format.


Project fields:
Anthropology

Program:
Research and Development

Division:
Preservation and Access

Totals:
$74,966 (approved)
$74,966 (awarded)

Grant period:
3/1/2022 – 8/31/2023


PR-284385-22

University of Oregon (Eugene, OR 97403-5219)
Sarah Seymore (Project Director: May 2021 to present)
Getting the Latest Scoop: A New Tool to Expand Access to Online Newspaper Collections

The expansion of Open ONI, a collection of open-source, collaboratively developed newspaper-hosting software, that will make digitally accessible many kinds of serial publications, such as periodicals, born-digital news, and serials published after 1963.

The changing preservation and maintenance landscape for digital newspapers necessitates an innovative, customizable, and lightweight technical solution to support local newspaper digitization and preservation programs. The University of Oregon Libraries, in partnership with the Center for Digital Research in the Humanities at the University of Nebraska–Lincoln, seeks funding to expand on the impact of the National Digital Newspaper Program by enhancing the existing software for better distribution and easier adoption by managers and curators of digital and born-digital newspapers. This project addresses the gaps in the currently-available systems by creating an open-source alternative to vendor systems or other shared digital collections repositories, and to continue expanding the Open ONI partnership and initiative to better serve institutions that want an easily-deployable and maintainable website for their digital newspaper collections.

Project fields:
Interdisciplinary Studies, Other

Program:
Research and Development

Division:
Preservation and Access

Totals:
$346,391 (approved)
$346,391 (awarded)

Grant period:
3/1/2022 – 2/28/2025


PR-284396-22

Metropolitan Museum of Art (New York, NY 10028-0113)
Julie Arslanoglu (Project Director: May 2021 to present)
Jose Luis Lazerte Luna (Co Project Director: February 2022 to present)
Ronda Kasl (Co Project Director: February 2022 to present)
A Novel Tripartite Approach to Biomolecule Analysis for the Identification of Unknown Artistic Materials Applied to the Use of Chia Oil in Art from New Spain

A Tier II project to develop a scientific methodology for biomolecule identification in art, demonstrated on chia oil in Mexican lacquerware and painting dating from the viceroyalty of New Spain.

Plant and animal products, especially from non-European cultures, are among the most understudied materials of cultural heritage. Yet they hold the keys to place decontextualized objects accurately in space, time and civilization, uncover their manufacturing processes, and ensure their proper conservation/preservation. As museums expand their commitment to the accurate description, classification, interpretation, and attribution of their collections, there is a growing need for new scientific tools and research strategies. This project merges science, conservation, and art history, using chia oil as a model material, which holds cultural significance through its artistic use. Our tripartite approach of lipidomics, proteomics, and DNA analysis applied to chia oil demonstrates the importance of a collaborative research platform for the investigation of any unknown biological material, and produces novel scientific protocols that can be adapted to other materials of biological origin.

Project fields:
Art History and Criticism; Latin American Studies

Program:
Research and Development

Division:
Preservation and Access

Totals:
$349,999 (approved)
$349,999 (awarded)

Grant period:
9/1/2022 – 8/31/2024


PR-284405-22

Northwestern University (Evanston, IL 60208-0001)
Marc Sebastian Walton (Project Director: May 2021 to March 2022)
Aggelos K. Katsaggelos (Project Director: March 2022 to present)
Aggelos K. Katsaggelos (Co Project Director: February 2022 to March 2022)
Oliver Strides Cossairt (Co Project Director: February 2022 to present)
Florian Willomitzer (Co Project Director: February 2022 to present)
Augmenting Polarized Light Microscopy with Computational Imaging and Deep Learning for Cultural Heritage

The development of image-based, quantitative protocols for Polarized Light Microscopy (PLM) using hardware and deep learning algorithms to generate image data for pigment identification and diagnosis of patterns of deterioration.

The project proposed here builds on this significant infrastructure and know-how within the conservation profession on PLM use. Focusing on the extensive archive of pigment dispersion slides at the Art Institute of Chicago1 and the Forbes collection at Harvard Art Museums as source materials, this proposal aims to maximize the amount of information extracted from PLM through recent advances in sensor hardware combined with computational imaging and deep learning. In short, we will be modernizing PLM by "harnessing the data revolution"to provide cutting-edge resources for conservators to make pigment identifications and to diagnose patterns of deterioration. As a core part of our dissemination, we will be making both the data collected as well as software pipelines open source for use by anyone and accessible through the Center of Scientific Studies in the Arts'' (NU-ACCESS) online presence.

Project fields:
Interdisciplinary Studies, General

Program:
Research and Development

Division:
Preservation and Access

Totals:
$350,000 (approved)
$350,000 (awarded)

Grant period:
3/1/2022 – 2/28/2025


PR-284416-22

Midwest Art Conservation Center, Inc. (Minneapolis, MN 55404-3506)
Colin D. Turner (Project Director: May 2021 to present)
Protecting Public Art Collections: Emergency Preparedness Through Remote Risk Assessment and Mapping

A planning project to develop a risk assessment matrix for public art collections using a subset of data from the Washington State Arts Commission’s public art collection.

The Midwest Art Conservation Center (MACC), in partnership with the Washington State Arts Commission (ArtsWA), will support emergency preparedness in public art collections through the development of tools for remote risk assessment, mapping, and emergency plans. This phase of the project will survey emergency preparedness activities and needs for public art collections in the United States, develop a reproducible logical framework for assessing risk remotely, and use that framework to evaluate data from a subset of the ArtsWA collection. This planning phase will conclude with a draft emergency planning document for ArtsWA, a review of the success of the framework, and a roadmap for future modifications and scaling. This project will use existing and accessible technology to fill a void in emergency planning for cultural heritage; it will create a resource that can be adapted and used freely by public art collections nationwide.

Project fields:
Arts, Other; Public History

Program:
Research and Development

Division:
Preservation and Access

Totals:
$73,842 (approved)
$73,842 (awarded)

Grant period:
3/1/2022 – 2/28/2023


PR-276751-21

Regents of the University of Michigan (Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1382)
Caroline Roberts (Project Director: May 2020 to present)
Advancing the Technical Study of Color in Archaeological Collections

The development of a research workflow and protocol based on capacity-building technical research in color studies using X-ray fluorescence spectroscopy (XRF) and multi-spectral imaging (MSI) techniques to study archaeological collections at the Kelsey Museum of Archaeology.

Color is a fundamental tool of human expression and has been for millennia. Understanding how people used color in the ancient world can tell us about their beliefs, values, and how they viewed the world around them. Color could be found everywhere: in architectural spaces, on sculpture, and in the clothing people wore. Color choices were made at every level of society, from emperors to individuals in their daily lives. Color was a commodity that traveled across the ancient Mediterranean, from western Spain to the Fayoum region of Egypt. Certain colors were so valued – and so rare – that people devised ways to create them chemically. We know much of this thanks to the scientific study of color that survives on artifacts. Technical color research provides physical evidence of the prevalence and variety of color in antiquity, and is changing the way we think about the ancient world.

Project fields:
Archaeology

Program:
Research and Development

Division:
Preservation and Access

Totals:
$46,595 (approved)
$46,595 (awarded)

Grant period:
3/1/2021 – 2/28/2023


PR-276760-21

UCLA; Regents of the University of California, Los Angeles (Los Angeles, CA 90024-4201)
Glenn Wharton (Project Director: May 2020 to present)
Ellen Pearlstein (Co Project Director: February 2021 to present)
Embedding Sustainability in Cultural Heritage Conservation Education

An eighteen-month research project to develop models, tools, and a strategic plan for teaching sustainability in cultural heritage conservation programs.  Funding would support a research associate for the duration of the project who would coordinate activities between UCLA faculty, Getty Conservation Institute scientists, and an outside advisory board consisting of engineers, architects, and conservators with demonstrated expertise in sustainability.

The UCLA/Getty Interdepartmental Program in the Conservation of Archaeological and Ethnographic Materials respectfully requests $75,000 for a Tier I National Endowment for the Humanities Research and Development Grant. We are proposing an eighteen month research project working with a Research Associate and an Advisory Committee to create a strategic plan for teaching sustainability in cultural heritage conservation. The project is the first phase of a larger initiative to integrate sustainability theory and practice into course offerings, convene a workshop of interdisciplinary experts, and create models and scalable curricular materials for publication by eScholarship, an open access publishing platform subsidized by the University of California. We will develop materials through research at UCLA and the Getty, and distribute them widely to benefit educational programs in cultural heritage conservation, library and archives preservation, and conservation of the built environment.

Project fields:
Arts, General; Arts, Other; Interdisciplinary Studies, Other

Program:
Research and Development

Division:
Preservation and Access

Totals:
$75,000 (approved)
$75,000 (awarded)

Grant period:
3/1/2021 – 8/31/2022


PR-276810-21

George Mason University (Fairfax, VA 22030-4444)
Antonios Anastasopoulos (Project Director: May 2020 to present)
Unlocking Endangered Language Resources

The development of modern Optical Character Recognition and post-correction tools tailored for Indigenous Latin American languages through a multilingual benchmark, software package, web interface, and digitized data to be returned to the Archive of the Indigenous Languages of Latin America (AILLA).

This project will unlock endangered and low-resource language data that have already been collected in the past and are stored in linguistic archives like the Archive of the Indigenous Languages of Latin America (AILLA).  To do so, we will combine modern machine learning tools with linguistic expertise to develop modern Optical Character Recognition and post-correction tools, tailored to the intricacies of these language data.  The result will include a multilingual benchmark, a software package, a web interface, and digitized data that will be returned to AILLA for storage.

[Grant products]

Project fields:
Computational Linguistics; Latin American Languages

Program:
Research and Development

Division:
Preservation and Access

Totals:
$349,677 (approved)
$349,283 (awarded)

Grant period:
3/1/2021 – 2/29/2024


PR-276851-21

University of Hawaii Systems (Honolulu, HI 96822-2247)
Brett Oppegaard (Project Director: May 2020 to present)
Thomas H. Conway (Co Project Director: March 2021 to present)
Improving Audio Description, Improving Access to the Humanities

A three-year Tier II project to develop best practices for creating audio descriptions of humanities collections for the blind, visually impaired, and deaf-blind.

Audio Description is an emerging and novel form of the digital humanities. Media accessibility is its primary purpose, as a way to translate visual media into audible media. But for its primary audiences – people who are blind or visually impaired – it is not a feature, bonus, or an extra, it is the medium through which they understand the visual humanities, including photographs, illustrations, videos, collages, and maps. This Research and Development project, “Improving Audio Description, Improving Access to the Humanities,” strategically focuses on creating better empirical foundations based on field tests, better open-source support infrastructure, and better in-situ models of Audio Description as a way to systematically address major challenges in the field. Through this approach, the research team will simultaneously build, test, support, review, and study new models in authentic heritage contexts across the country.

Project fields:
Communications; Communications

Program:
Research and Development

Division:
Preservation and Access

Totals:
$296,203 (approved)
$286,191 (awarded)

Grant period:
3/1/2021 – 2/29/2024


PR-276878-21

RIT (Rochester, NY 14623-5698)
Kelly Krish (Project Director: May 2020 to present)
Integrating Risk Assessment for Pollutants into Energy-saving Strategies for Sustainable Environmental Management of Collection Storage Spaces

A three-year Tier II advanced research project to develop a diagnostic methodology for cultural heritage institutions to monitor and adjust room-level pollutant concentrations while implementing sustainable preservation strategies.

RIT’s Image Permanence Institute is applying for a three-year Tier II: Advanced Implementation Grant to integrate new methods for pollution risk assessment into best practices for implementing energy-saving strategies in mechanical systems serving collection spaces. Pollutants are pervasive, occurring in indoor and outdoor air, causing damage to nearly all forms of collection objects. The project will document, analyze, and interpret changes to pollutant concentrations when implementing energy-saving strategies, as compared to standard operation. A data collection and modeling procedure will be developed to help institutions balance their own indoor and outdoor pollutant levels with preservation quality, energy-savings optimization, and reduced carbon footprint. The proposed project’s relation to climate change, financial impact, and preservation makes it both timely and pressing, and the results will be applicable to the vast majority of collecting institutions.

Project fields:
Arts, Other; Interdisciplinary Studies, Other

Program:
Research and Development

Division:
Preservation and Access

Totals:
$350,000 (approved)
$350,000 (awarded)

Grant period:
3/1/2021 – 2/29/2024


PR-276897-21

MIPoPS (Seattle, WA 98104-1822)
Rachel Price (Project Director: May 2020 to present)
Digital Video Commander

A Tier II project to develop opensource software and training documentation for the preservation of digital videotape collections, a prevalent format from the mid-1980s to the late 2000s for recording news broadcasts, home movies, oral histories, and artistic and ethnographic performances.

The Digital Video Commander project seeks to reframe the paradigm of preservation as it applies to digital moving images, rather than adopting the practices used for analog videotape. It will do so by developing open source software, facilitating user testing, and creating documentation, which will result in intuitive, comprehensive and automated data migration techniques.

Project fields:
History, Other

Program:
Research and Development

Division:
Preservation and Access

Totals:
$217,265 (approved)
$216,038 (awarded)

Grant period:
3/1/2021 – 2/28/2023


PR-268710-20

University of California, Berkeley (Berkeley, CA 94704-5940)
Deborah Winthrop Anderson (Project Director: May 2019 to present)
Universal Scripts Project

The preparation of eight scripts—six historical and two modern—for inclusion in the international Unicode standard, to aid research using materials in historical scripts and to promote communication in minority language communities.

Although computer and mobile users in many parts of the world can now communicate in hundreds of languages by using their own native writing system, there are still linguistic minority groups, and users of historical writing systems, who cannot. This is because the letters and symbols of these scripts are not yet part of the international character encoding standard, known as Unicode. More than one hundred and thirty eligible scripts are not yet included in Unicode, which directly affects humanities research, the creation of the global digital repository of humankind's literary and cultural heritage and, for users of modern scripts, basic communication. This project will fund proposals for two modern and six historical scripts (or major script additions) for inclusion in the standard, and pave the way for electronic communication in (and about) scripts by scholars and other user communities.

Project fields:
Linguistics

Program:
Research and Development

Division:
Preservation and Access

Totals (outright + matching):
$306,370 (approved)
$302,910 (awarded)

Grant period:
3/1/2020 – 2/28/2023


PR-268771-20

Foundation of the American Institute for Conservation of Historic and Artistic Works (FAIC) (Washington, DC 20005-1704)
Eric Pourchot (Project Director: May 2019 to present)
Matthew Eckelman (Co Project Director: February 2020 to present)
Sarah Nunberg (Co Project Director: February 2020 to present)
Sarah Sutton (Co Project Director: February 2020 to present)
Building a Life Cycle Assessment Tool & Library of Preventive Conservation Methods

Development of an online Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) tool and library for conservation and preservation professionals. When completed, this tool and library would help cultural heritage institutions evaluate the environmental and human health impacts of collection management activities, including conservation treatment, storage, loans, and exhibitions.

The Foundation for Advancement in Conservation (FAIC) will conducted Life Cycle Assessments (LCAs) that will help collection care professionals to make informed choices that protect health and the environment while continuing to preserve and exhibit humanities collections. 3,500 materials, products, and processes will be researched and made available through an online Tool. Complex processes will captured in an LCA Library to guide collections care decision-making. Research results will be disseminated through articles, blog posts, presentations, workshops, and a traveling exhibit . Key research support will be provided by Northeastern University and the Pratt Institute. Principal Investigators are Matt Eckelman (NEU), Sarah Nunberg (Pratt), Eric Pourchot (FAIC), and Sarah Sutton (Sustainable Museums).

Project fields:
Interdisciplinary Studies, General

Program:
Research and Development

Division:
Preservation and Access

Totals:
$350,000 (approved)
$350,000 (awarded)

Grant period:
3/1/2020 – 2/28/2023


PR-268783-20

RIT (Rochester, NY 14623-5698)
David Messinger (Project Director: May 2019 to present)
Low-Cost End-to-End Spectral Imaging System for Historical Document Discovery

A Tier II project to develop a low-cost spectral imaging system and accompanying software to recover obscured and illegible text in historical materials.

Most research libraries and museums hold unique or rare items on which historically significant text is no longer legible due to deterioration or erasure. Spectral imaging - the process of collecting images of objects in many wavelengths of light - has become one solution for recovering obscured and illegible text on historical materials. Unfortunately, these systems are very expensive, and require knowledge of image processing methods. Most libraries and museums cannot afford these systems, nor do they have the capacity to process the data. To mitigate this, we propose to develop a low-cost spectral imaging system with accompanying low barrier-to-entry software.

[Grant products][Media coverage]

Project fields:
Interdisciplinary Studies, General

Program:
Research and Development

Division:
Preservation and Access

Totals:
$350,000 (approved)
$347,680 (awarded)

Grant period:
3/1/2020 – 2/28/2023


PR-268817-20

Board of Trustees of the University of Illinois (Champaign, IL 61801-3620)
William Underwood (Project Director: May 2019 to present)
Broadening Access to Text Analysis by Describing Uncertainty

A Tier I project to study errors and paratextual noise in optically transcribed digital library texts, and the consequences of these errors on historical and humanistic conclusions measuring trends across time.

The noise associated with digital transcription has become an important obstacle to humanistic research. While the errors in digital texts are easily observed, the downstream effects of error on scholarship are far from clear. Consequential problems for the humanities often spring less from the average level of error in a collection than from the uneven distribution of noise across different periods, genres, and social strata. Uncertainty about this problem undermines confidence in research and discourages some scholars from using digital libraries at all. To address these problems, we will 1) Create paired libraries of clean, manually transcribed volumes and optically-transcribed versions of the same volumes, with or without paratext. 2) Conduct parallel experiments in these corpora to empirically measure the distortions affecting scholarship. 3) Construct a map of error and share resources that help scholars estimate levels of uncertainty in their work.

[White paper][Grant products]

Project fields:
American Literature; British Literature; Interdisciplinary Studies, General

Program:
Research and Development

Division:
Preservation and Access

Totals:
$73,122 (approved)
$73,122 (awarded)

Grant period:
3/1/2020 – 5/31/2021


PR-263944-19

MIPoPS (Seattle, WA 98104-1822)
Rachel Price (Project Director: June 2018 to present)
DV Rescue

The development of procedures and tools designed for the preservation of Digital Video (DV) recordings, a highly fragile format used widely in the mid-1990s through 2000s, documenting local heritage, oral histories, arts performances and a variety of other cultural events and activities.

Moving Image Preservation of Puget Sound (MIPoPS) is requesting supporting funds via a Tier II National Endowment for the Humanities Research and Development grant for a project, titled DV Rescue. [The project will] develop procedures and tools that will support migrating data from DV tapes into digital files suitable for long-term preservation. This will fill an urgent need for DV tape transfer tools that can rescue content from at-risk digital videotape formats. The DV Rescue project will entail two years of work to develop open source and freely available software, user research and testing, and create documentation to help define and perform comprehensive, automated, and easy-to-use data migration techniques. MIPoPS will collaborate with RiceCapades, a consulting and development company. They will also work with eight institutions currently collecting DV videotape to conduct research, define preservation workflows, establish standards and develop the most impactful tools f

[Grant products]

Project fields:
History, Other

Program:
Research and Development

Division:
Preservation and Access

Totals:
$191,835 (approved)
$191,835 (awarded)

Grant period:
5/1/2019 – 4/30/2022


PR-263931-19

RIT (Rochester, NY 14623-5698)
Sungyoung Kim (Project Director: June 2018 to present)
Digital Preservation and Access to Aural Heritage Via A Scalable, Extensible Method

The development of capture protocols, standards, and tutorials for long-term preservation and virtual representations of aural heritage.

Aural heritage preservation documents and recreates the auditory experience of culturally important places, enabling virtual interaction through physics-based reconstructions. A form of “intangible” cultural heritage, aural heritage is captured via spatial acoustics techniques, creating digital audio data for auralizations (reconstructions for listening). This project will 1) codify a protocol for the capture, verification, and auralization of aural heritage, demonstrated in case-study application on three culturally distinct sites; 2) create extensibility pathways for the widespread adoption of this protocol, including workshops, web-based tutorials, and other freely disseminated resources that enable non-acoustical specialists to apply the method to a diversity of sites. Case study demonstrations of the method will serve as models for site constituencies, Humanities researchers, and other cultural heritage practitioners, while providing a digital archive of endangered aural heritage.

[Grant products]

Project fields:
Interdisciplinary Studies, Other

Program:
Research and Development

Division:
Preservation and Access

Totals:
$347,701 (approved)
$347,701 (awarded)

Grant period:
1/1/2019 – 12/31/2022


PR-263932-19

Johns Hopkins University (Baltimore, MD 21218-2625)
Patricia McGuiggan (Project Director: June 2018 to present)
Encapsulation: Past, Present, and Future

A Tier II project to conduct experimental analyses on polyethylene-terephthalate (PET) encapsulation products used in preserving historical documents, along with the testing of newer encapsulation materials and the execution of a national survey about the number and condition of encapsulated documents in library and archival collections.

The preservation of documents by PET encapsulation is one of the most popular methods of paper conservation. In spite of this, there are concerns regarding whether the PET envelope traps acidic gases naturally produced by paper which might harm the document. We propose measuring the permeation of gases through archival PET as well as the properties of encapsulated papers. We will also survey the encapsulation methods used in libraries and archives in the US and test the condition of naturally aged PET in local libraries. We will also investigate newer, breathable films which might be used for archival storage of paper documents.

[Grant products]

Project fields:
Interdisciplinary Studies, Other

Program:
Research and Development

Division:
Preservation and Access

Totals:
$349,879 (approved)
$349,879 (awarded)

Grant period:
1/1/2019 – 12/31/2022


PR-263935-19

University of Chicago (Chicago, IL 60637-5418)
Susanne Paulus (Project Director: June 2018 to present)
Far from Home: Exploring the application of non-destructive XRF clay analysis for the provenience study of cuneiform tablets

A study of the applicability of geochemical clay analyses, including portable energy dispersive X-ray fluorescence (pXRF) and laser-induced breakdown spectroscopy (LIBS), for establishing the provenance of cuneiform tablets held by the Oriental Institute (OI) of the University of Chicago.

Unprovenanced clay tablets with cuneiform writing from the Near East present a legal, ethical, and scholarly challenge for cultural heritage preservation, museum collections, and scholars. The goal of this project is to prove that chemical clay analysis employing X-ray fluorescence and laser-induced breakdown spectroscopy is a viable method to determine the provenance of those antique objects.

[White paper]

Project fields:
Archaeology; Near and Middle Eastern History

Program:
Research and Development

Division:
Preservation and Access

Totals:
$70,363 (approved)
$70,363 (awarded)

Grant period:
1/1/2019 – 12/31/2021


PR-263939-19

Arizona Board of Regents (Tucson, AZ 85721-0001)
Marek R. Rychlik (Project Director: June 2018 to May 2022)
Development of Image-to-text Conversion for Pashto and Traditional Chinese

The development of optical character recognition (OCR) technology and a software prototype for an open-source global language and culture databank for Pashto and Traditional Chinese.

The proposed NEH Research and Development Tier 1 project will provide a foundation for a large-scale, open source, global language and culture data bank for Pashto and Traditional Chinese. The Tier 1 activities include: fundamental research, building a software prototype and formulating a plan for Tier 2. The most important outcome of the Tier 1 phase will be software implementing new optical character recognition (OCR) technology for the two languages. The expected outcome of the entire project will be improved access and preservation of documents in Pashto and Traditional Chinese, collectively representing the cultural heritage of hundreds of millions of people, which will have a major impact on research in the humanities.

[White paper][Grant products]

Project fields:
East Asian Studies; Interdisciplinary Studies, General; Linguistics

Program:
Research and Development

Division:
Preservation and Access

Totals:
$75,000 (approved)
$71,161 (awarded)

Grant period:
1/1/2019 – 12/31/2020


PR-263888-19

Trustees of Dartmouth College (Hanover, NH 03755-1808)
Mark J. Williams (Project Director: June 2018 to present)
Accessible Civil Rights Heritage Project

The development of processes and guidelines to facilitate the use of historical film and video from the civil rights era, with a focus on enabling access for blind and visually impaired users.

The Accessible Civil Rights Heritage (ACRH) Tier II proposal seeks to develop processes and guidelines supporting the delivery of annotated archival video to the higher education community with a particular focus on blind and visually impaired (BVI) users. The ACRH project will research the creation, curation, and consumption of online humanities collections by developing a test corpus of culturally significant newsfilm on American civil rights, dating from the 1950s to the 1980s. ACRH will then combine the deep knowledge of experts on the era with the work of archivists and human-cognition researchers to develop new cataloging and access procedures that deliver high-quality, meaningful experiences to BVI users about culturally significant material. The team will produce evidence-based accessibility guidelines and software that will be published as open resources for use by educators and archivists.

[Grant products]

Project fields:
Cultural History; Film History and Criticism; Media Studies

Program:
Research and Development

Division:
Preservation and Access

Totals:
$299,863 (approved)
$277,439 (awarded)

Grant period:
1/1/2019 – 9/30/2022


PR-258543-18

Arizona State University (Tempe, AZ 85281-3670)
Michelle Hegmon (Project Director: May 2017 to March 2021)
From Library to Laboratory: Developing Tools to Enhance the Use of Digital Archaeological and Other Humanities Collections

A Tier 1 project to develop a digital interface with a series of dynamic webpages to enhance search capabilities of archaeological field documents, images, and datasets from projects across the globe. As a test case, the project would use the Mimbres Pottery Images Digital Database, which incorporates a collection of more than 10,500 photographs and datasets on pottery dating to around 1000-1500 CE from southwestern New Mexico, eastern Arizona, and northern Mexico.

Archaeologists and other humanities scholars today can access vast libraries of digital collections.  Scholars can download these collections, and given sufficient skills and software, analyze them for research.  We will develop tools to move this marvelous capability to the next level, transforming the libraries into laboratories.  Our tools will allow line analysis and research of these collections, enhancing research and opening access to the general public. Using funding assured from other means, we will also create K-12 and higher education programs utilizing these tools.  Our work will be done in the context of a large established digital repository, the Digital Archaeological Record (tDAR).  As a testbed, we will utilize the Mimbres Pottery Images Digital Database (MimPIDD), a large collection of archaeological pottery images from the Mimbres region of the US Southwest.

[Grant products]

Project fields:
Archaeology

Program:
Research and Development

Division:
Preservation and Access

Totals:
$73,524 (approved)
$58,453 (awarded)

Grant period:
1/1/2018 – 12/31/2019


PR-258746-18

Cultural Heritage Imaging (San Francisco, CA 94102-5867)
Mark Mudge (Project Director: June 2017 to present)
The Democratization of Scientific Imaging through Metadata Management and Archival Submission Support

The development and enhancement of open-source software tools for the collection, management, archiving, and sharing of cultural heritage imaging metadata. Data management processes associated with computational photography would be streamlined and automated through a suite of tools that would make computational photographic techniques, and the images and metadata they generate, more accessible and more sustainable for a wide audience of cultural heritage practitioners.

This work is a collaboration between Cultural Heritage Imaging and the Centre for Cultural Informatics (CCI) in Heraklion, Crete. The project will complete and disseminate a free open source pipeline of scientific imaging software tools that use data captured with off-the-shelf digital cameras and photo gear. These user-friendly tools greatly simplify metadata collection, essential to the scientific documentary imaging of “digital surrogates,” and organize these reusable materials into a standards-based Submission Information Package (SIP) for archival delivery and intake. The tools are for use by cultural heritage practitioners in museums, libraries, and historic sites, as well as by local citizen caretakers around the world. Adoption of the tools and techniques will be enhanced by software internationalization and localization into Arabic. The goal is to democratize the use of these tools to save humanity’s imperiled cultural legacy, especially in North Africa and the Middle East.

[Grant products]

Project fields:
Interdisciplinary Studies, Other

Program:
Research and Development

Division:
Preservation and Access

Totals:
$339,295 (approved)
$339,295 (awarded)

Grant period:
1/1/2018 – 6/30/2021


PR-258893-18

RIT (Rochester, NY 14623-5698)
Jean-Louis Bigourdan (Project Director: June 2017 to present)
The Impact of Temperature Transitions, Short-term and Seasonal, on the Moisture Content of Library and Archive Collections

A three-year study focused on the impact of temperature changes, short-term and seasonal, on the moisture content of library and archive collections. The results would inform new sustainable preservation and access strategies for both large and small humanities collections.

The Image Permanence Institute is seeking funding for a three-year research project focused on the impact of environmental transitions on moisture content in library and archive collections. The potential for deterioration caused by moisture content exists in storage and access scenarios. This research will strengthen our understanding of the complex interactions between hygroscopic collection materials and their environment in response to temperature changes. Data collected has the potential to 1) determine the storage density necessary to effectively have hygroscopic materials control their moisture content, 2) provide a roadmap for controlling moisture content during periods of dryness and dampness, and 3) create a guide for temperature and relative humidity ranges that avoid mechanical damage during access and use. The results of this project have the potential to inform new sustainable preservation and access strategies for both large and small humanities research collections.

Project fields:
Arts, Other; Interdisciplinary Studies, Other

Program:
Research and Development

Division:
Preservation and Access

Totals:
$349,149 (approved)
$349,149 (awarded)

Grant period:
1/1/2018 – 12/31/2020


PR-258900-18

Northwestern University (Evanston, IL 60208-0001)
Marc Sebastian Walton (Project Director: June 2017 to present)
Metal Soap Protrusions on Georgia O'Keeffe's Paintings: Establishing a New Quantitative Imaging Paradigm for Linking Scientif

Development of an open-source tool for characterizing and monitoring the development of metal soap formation on Georgia O’Keeffe’s paintings. Once developed, the tool would be available to conservators, scholars, and scientists who wish to monitor changes in surface topography on oil paintings. 

This project promises to reduce the barriers between scientific research and conservation practice; as well, it will develop user-friendly, image-based tools that could be used for real-time, long-term monitoring of the dynamic evolution of paint surfaces affected by metal soaps formation. These imaging and web-based image-processing tools, once developed, could be easily adapted to investigate other surface characteristics of paintings that are critical to their preservation such as surface cracks and lacunae. The results will provide the community with actual data on the impact of environmental as well as anthropic (i.e. solvent cleaning/lining etc.) factors on the present condition and long term preservation of paintings.

[Grant products]

Project fields:
Interdisciplinary Studies, Other

Program:
Research and Development

Division:
Preservation and Access

Totals:
$349,988 (approved)
$342,247 (awarded)

Grant period:
1/1/2018 – 12/31/2021


PR-258903-18

Center for Research Libraries (Chicago, IL 60637-2804)
Amy E. Wood (Project Director: June 2017 to October 2021)
CRL: Mining Serials Reformatting Data for Preservation

A Tier I investigation of bibliographic data for approximately 20,000 humanities serial publications preserved on microfilm and in digital form, to determine how such information could best be combined with the Print Archives Preservation Registry (PAPR) to facilitate acquisition and preservation decisions in libraries.

The Center for Research Libraries seeks NEH Research and Development Tier I funding for the planning phase of a major effort to mine the records of historical print serials reformatted through major humanities preservation microfilming programs and digitization efforts. During the planning phase, CRL will assemble from a variety of sources a testbed of bibliographic records, holdings information, and other documentation on an estimated 20,000 journals reformatted over the last fifty years by libraries and trustworthy publishers. CRL will assess the quality and reliability of records and information related to these reformatted serials, and will determine the extent to which the acquired information can be integrated with other existing data on print serials in the Print Archives Preservation Registry (PAPR). Finally, CRL will test the applicability of that information to library decisions on preservation and maintenance of print serial collections.

Project fields:
Interdisciplinary Studies, Other

Program:
Research and Development

Division:
Preservation and Access

Totals:
$74,981 (approved)
$74,981 (awarded)

Grant period:
1/1/2018 – 12/31/2018


PR-253360-17

University of California, Berkeley (Berkeley, CA 94704-5940)
Deborah Winthrop Anderson (Project Director: June 2016 to March 2022)
Universal Scripts Project

The preparation of nine scripts—four modern and five historical—for inclusion in the international Unicode standard, to aid research using materials in historical scripts and promote communication in minority language communities.

Although computer and mobile users in many parts of the world can now communicate in hundreds of languages by using their own native writing system, there are still linguistic minority groups, and users of historical writing systems, who cannot. This is because the letters and symbols of these scripts are not yet part of the international character encoding standard, known as Unicode. More than one hundred and fifty eligible scripts are not yet included in Unicode, which directly affects humanities research, the creation of the global digital repository of humankind's literary and cultural heritage and, for users of modern scripts, basic communication. This project will fund proposals for four modern and five historical scripts for inclusion in the standard, and pave the way for electronic communication in (and about) scripts by scholars and the use. The project will also develop and make available fonts for the non-Latin scripts of ancient Italy, in order to aid scholars.

[Grant products][Media coverage]

Project fields:
Ancient Languages; Languages, General; Linguistics

Program:
Research and Development

Division:
Preservation and Access

Totals (outright + matching):
$274,840 (approved)
$274,840 (awarded)

Grant period:
4/1/2017 – 9/30/2020


PR-253380-17

Georgia Tech Research Corporation (Atlanta, GA 30332-0415)
Michael Nitsche (Project Director: June 2016 to May 2019)
Archiving Performative Objects

The development of an interactive system that provides access to a puppet’s functionality and expression by allowing the viewer to manipulate and “play,” through game-like technology, with a puppet or other performative object held in a digital archive.

Archiving Performative Objects is a collaboration between Georgia Tech and the Center for Puppetry Arts (CPA), both in Atlanta. It asks how we can use digital media to archive an object's functionality as "object in use." Expanding from the use of 3D visualization and reproduction, the project aims to include usage of objects through digital means and interaction design.   The project will scan up to 15 puppets from the CPA's archive and develop an interactive system to provide access to the puppets' functionality and expression. Users can interact with these puppets, which are notoriously difficult to access and conserve, through either desktop or virtual reality (VR) software.  The system will be designed to fit into existent database structures and aims to prototype a technical solution as well as a research tool for digital humanities scholars and archivists. The CPA provides expertise in puppet archiving and manipulation, while Georgia Tech covers interaction design and technical implementation.

Project fields:
Media Studies

Program:
Research and Development

Division:
Preservation and Access

Totals:
$74,851 (approved)
$74,805 (awarded)

Grant period:
1/1/2017 – 12/31/2018


PR-253384-17

WGBH Educational Foundation (Boston, MA 02135-2016)
Casey Davis (Project Director: June 2016 to present)
PBCore Development and Training Project

The development of tools, methodologies, workflows and training to enhance and extend the adoption of the standard Public Broadcasting Metadata Dictionary (PBCore), a metadata schema used to catalog and describe audiovisual materials.

WGBH Educational Foundation seeks a Tier II NEH Research and Development Grant of $345,193 for the PBCore Development and Training Project ("the Project"). The goal of the Project is to develop tools, methodologies, workflows and training to enhance and extend the adoption of the Public Broadcasting Metadata Dictionary ("PBCore"), a metadata schema for the management of public media collections.

[Grant products]

Project fields:
Interdisciplinary Studies, Other

Program:
Research and Development

Division:
Preservation and Access

Totals:
$345,193 (approved)
$345,193 (awarded)

Grant period:
4/1/2017 – 11/30/2019


PR-253386-17

University of Southern California (Los Angeles, CA 90089-0012)
Deborah Ann Holmes-Wong (Project Director: June 2016 to June 2019)
Unlocking Maps: Automatic and Streamlined Metadata Creation for Digital Collections

The evaluation of advanced techniques for map processing in order to streamline the cataloging of historic maps in digital libraries.

During our 12-month Tier I basic research project, we will apply automated map-processing techniques to 25 historic maps. We will compare these results with the results through two standard map cataloging methods in digital library projects. We hope to determine whether the Strabo open-source map-processing software can be used to capture the information needed to complete required fields in Qualified Dublin Core metadata records for a CONTENTdm back-end system. This is a common technical infrastructure used in many digital libraries, so our results will have broad applicability.

[Grant products][Media coverage]

Project fields:
Geography; History, General

Program:
Research and Development

Division:
Preservation and Access

Totals:
$74,950 (approved)
$74,950 (awarded)

Grant period:
3/1/2017 – 8/31/2018


PR-253387-17

CCAHA (Philadelphia, PA 19103-5530)
Rachel Wetzel (Project Director: June 2016 to September 2021)
Robert Cornelius and Early Pioneering Daguerreotypists Database Project

The development of a database to gather information about early ungilded daguerreotypes created by an American pioneer of photography, Robert Cornelius (1809-93), and other early daguerreotypists, and to assist in the development of future conservation treatment practices.

Led by Rachel Wetzel, Photograph Conservator at the Conservation Center for Art and Historic Artifacts, a team of experts in the field of photograph conservation will design a database for information regarding early ungilded daguerreotypes (1839-1841), by Robert Cornelius and other early pioneering daguerreotypists, to assist curators and conservators with responsibilities for the care and preservation of these important and fragile artifacts. Ms. Wetzel will collect information on the known existing Cornelius daguerreotypes, as well as other early ungilded daguerreotypes from this period. The database will be located and disseminated through the Lens Media Lab website maintained by Paul Messier at the Yale Institute for the Preservation of Cultural Heritage. The establishment of this database is an essential step in developing appropriate best practices and treatment protocols for these irreplaceable documents of the earliest years of photography.

[Grant products]

Project fields:
Arts, Other; History, Other

Program:
Research and Development

Division:
Preservation and Access

Totals:
$48,967 (approved)
$42,131 (awarded)

Grant period:
1/1/2017 – 6/30/2019


PR-253388-17

George Washington University (Washington, DC 20052-0001)
Murray H. Loew (Project Director: June 2016 to present)
Glass at Risk: Simple Tools for Detecting Unstable Glass in 19th-Century Cultural Heritage Collections

A research project to characterize and identify unstable 19th-century glass artifacts using simple, non-invasive testing methods. Once developed, this testing protocol would be organized into a freely available “decision tree” that will allow preservation professionals of varying backgrounds and abilities to better identify and care for unstable glass in museum, library, and archive collections.

The grant will support interdisciplinary, collaborative research for the development of simple tools organized into a "decision tree" that will allow end-users of varying backgrounds and abilities, from curators and collectors to conservators and conservation scientists, to better identify the risk posed by unstable 19th century glass in historical collections. The tree and accompanying protocols will guide users in a step-wise process through the application of simple, readily available tools for the examination of glass artifacts, starting with the use of ultraviolet (UV) light, and advancing to more sophisticated non-invasive spectroscopic and spectral imaging tools, including X-ray fluorescence (XRF), spectral imaging, and fluorescence spectroscopy.

Project fields:
Interdisciplinary Studies, Other

Program:
Research and Development

Division:
Preservation and Access

Totals:
$349,830 (approved)
$349,823 (awarded)

Grant period:
1/1/2017 – 12/31/2020


PR-253389-17

University of Nebraska, Lincoln (Lincoln, NE 68588-0007)
Heather Marie Richards-Rissetto (Project Director: June 2016 to May 2019)
Keeping Data Alive: Supporting Reuse and Repurposing of 3D Data in the Humanities

A project to develop 3D architectural models of Mayan cities in an open source database for reuse and repurposing in other architectural reconstructions, leading to the creation of an open source platform to host, deliver, and visualize 3D models linked to descriptive data.

The goals of this one year project are to develop workflows to: (1) generate, store, and make accessible 3D models of architecture in an open source database that scholars can (re)use and repurpose to create their own multi-scalar reconstructions ranging from individual buildings to entire cityscapes and (2) host, deliver, and visualize 3D models, linked to metadata, paradata, and descriptive data, in an open source 3D visualization environment. The project includes front-end and back-end deliverables that will contribute to data sustainability and accessibility in the humanities. Front-end deliverables include a project website hosting workflows with tutorials and a proto-database for beta-testing and capturing user feedback. Back-end deliverables include "white paper" describing the initial database design, data structuring, initial findings, ongoing challenges, and next steps.

[Grant products][Media coverage]

Project fields:
Archaeology; Architecture

Program:
Research and Development

Division:
Preservation and Access

Totals:
$74,368 (approved)
$71,719 (awarded)

Grant period:
1/1/2017 – 12/31/2018


PR-253401-17

Foundation of the American Institute for Conservation of Historic and Artistic Works (FAIC) (Washington, DC 20005-1704)
Eric Pourchot (Project Director: June 2016 to November 2019)
Planning a Life Cycle Analysis Library of Preventive Conservation Methods

The pilot phase and development of a free, online Life Cycle Analysis (LCA) library and tool for conservation and preservation professionals. When completed, this library would help cultural heritage institutions evaluate the environmental and human health impacts of collection management activities including conservation treatment, storage, loans, and exhibitions.

This project will lay the groundwork for an online Life Cycle Analysis (LCA) library and tool that assesses the environmental and human health impact of sustaining a humanities collection.  The investigators will produce three representative Life Cycle Analysis (LCA) reports; document the most prevalent activities, products, and events that are part of collections care and access work in museums and historic sites; produce a beta version of a tool for evaluating LCA; and develop a plan for next steps to create a robust LCA library and online tool.  These new resources will allow custodians of cultural heritage to evaluate materials and approaches used to maintain collections, and enhance decision-making for care of all forms of material culture.

Project fields:
Interdisciplinary Studies, General

Program:
Research and Development

Division:
Preservation and Access

Totals:
$75,000 (approved)
$75,000 (awarded)

Grant period:
1/1/2017 – 12/31/2018


PR-234235-16

Alexandria Archive Institute, Inc. (San Francisco, CA 94127-2036)
Sarah Whitcher Kansa (Project Director: June 2015 to March 2021)
Beyond Management: Data Curation as Scholarship in Archaeology

A longitudinal study of practices of creation, management, and re-use of archaeological data drawn from three geographical areas (Tunisia, England, and Peru) to investigate data quality and modeling requirements for re-use by a larger research community. The project would document workflows, create exemplary open datasets, launch a new publication service, and develop online educational modules.

Research data preservation and access has particular urgency in archaeology, a discipline grappling with financial constraints and an escalating pace of economically and politically motivated site destruction. This project builds upon prior investments in digital repository and data publishing services. Archiving alone is not sufficient for ensuring future understanding. Idiosyncratic and error-prone data collection practices impede future data analysis, integration, and interpretation. To open new understanding, intellectually and methodologically rigorous approaches to data management must underpin each stage of archaeological research, from a project's initial planning through archiving. Using systematic qualitative research, our team will investigate data quality and modeling requirements for the reuse of archaeological data by a wider research community. This work expands data publishing services to widen engagement in sharing and preserving a rich and meaningful past.

[Grant products]

Project fields:
Archaeology; Interdisciplinary Studies, General

Program:
Research and Development

Division:
Preservation and Access

Totals (outright + matching):
$324,112 (approved)
$324,112 (awarded)

Grant period:
1/1/2016 – 12/31/2019


PR-234292-16

University of Pittsburgh (Pittsburgh, PA 15260-6133)
Alison Langmead (Project Director: June 2015 to April 2018)
Sustaining MedArt: The Impact of Socio-Technical Factors on Digital Preservation Strategies

A case study investigating the sustainability of digital humanities projects by conducting user surveys and oral histories related to the developmental history of an online image collection created in the mid-1990s of medieval architecture and artifacts known as MedArt.  The research will lead to the publication of a Web-based “Socio-Technical Digital Preservation Roadmap” that documents and guides digital humanists and preservation professionals through the preservation planning process.

Questions of sustainability are becoming increasingly central to the work of digital humanists as early digital projects age and as new projects proliferate across disciplines—many of which involve scholars and practitioners who lack a shared knowledge base when it comes to addressing digital preservation needs. Sustaining the work of the digital humanities is clearly a critical task, but there is a lack of meaningful empirical data about the long-term effects of technological and staffing decisions made during project creation processes and over the course of project lifespans. This research, organized as a case study into a landmark and pioneering digital humanities initiative, will provide insight into the ways in which a digital project's sustainability can hinge on accreted decisions over time as well as on complex interactions between human, technological and administrative infrastructures.

Project fields:
Interdisciplinary Studies, General; Media Studies; Medieval Studies

Program:
Research and Development

Division:
Preservation and Access

Totals:
$69,041 (approved)
$67,982 (awarded)

Grant period:
5/1/2016 – 12/31/2017


PR-234316-16

Trustees of Dartmouth College (Hanover, NH 03755-1808)
Mark J. Williams (Project Director: June 2015 to April 2018)
Semantic Annotation Tool

The development of the Semantic Annotation Tool (SAT), which would facilitate the creation and sharing of time-based media annotations on the Web by researchers, students, and educators.

The Semantic Annotation Tool (SAT) proposal seeks funds to develop and distribute a drop-in module that facilitates the creation and sharing of time-based media annotations on the web. The finished system will be composed of two parts: first, a jQuery plugin that wraps an existing media player to provide an intuitive authoring and presentation environment for time-based video annotations; and second, a linked data server that communicates with the plugin to collect and disseminate user-generated comments and tags using the W3C Open Annotation specification. The goal of building this system is to create an end-to-end open source video annotation workflow that can be used as either an off the shelf or customizable solution for a wide variety of applications. Potential uses include collaborative close reading of video for humanities research, simplified coding of time-based documentation in social science studies, enhancing accessibility for media clips on web sites, and many others

Project fields:
Interdisciplinary Studies, Other

Program:
Research and Development

Division:
Preservation and Access

Totals:
$74,984 (approved)
$74,984 (awarded)

Grant period:
1/1/2016 – 12/31/2017


PR-234372-16

New York University (New York, NY 10012-1019)
Jane E. Anderson (Project Director: June 2015 to November 2019)
Local Contexts 2.0: Implementing Traditional Knowledge Labels

The development of a set of protocols, standards, tools, and resources relating to digital curation and stewardship of indigenous cultural heritage that would assist non-Native collecting institutions and local Native American communities to enhance access and management of knowledge about humanities collections.

This project aims to further develop extra-legal solutions to the curatorial challenges posed by Native American and First Nations collections in relation to access and expanding the public record. This Tier II Advanced Implementation Research and Development proposal will support the further development and implementation of the Local Contexts online platform (www.localcontexts.org). In its third phase of development, Local Contexts has already provided educational materials related to intellectual property rights, digital stewardships, co-curation, and a new set of innovative Traditional Knowledge Labels for both Native/First Nations and non-Native collecting institutions. This next phase would extend the platform to create a practical set of tools, models, and workflow for digital curation of Native/First Nations collections across stakeholders. This project will unite Native/First Nations and non-Native communities and institutions who manage and hold their cultural heritage by extending the existing Local Contexts platform into a national, institutional-wide model, focusing on the development and implementation of a new set of standards for providing access to, and structuring use of Native/First Nations cultural heritage collections online.

Project fields:
Interdisciplinary Studies, General; Social Sciences, General

Program:
Research and Development

Division:
Preservation and Access

Totals (outright + matching):
$320,000 (approved)
$320,000 (awarded)

Grant period:
1/1/2016 – 12/31/2018


PR-234484-16

Yale University (New Haven, CT 06510-1703)
Paul Michael Whitmore (Project Director: June 2015 to June 2019)
Rui Chen (Co Project Director: October 2016 to June 2019)
Effects of Relative Humidity Fluctuations on Paper Permanence

A Tier I proposal to examine chemical and physical degradation in paper artifacts as a result of cycling temperature and humidity. This application builds upon a 2001 study by the Yale Aging Diagnostics Lab (ADL) examining the degradation of rag paper when exposed to humidity cycled between 25% and 75% every two hours at room temperature. The proposed second phase study would explore the key factors that determine the magnitude of risk, such as paper composition, humidity range, and cycling speed. Three different types of paper (rag, acidic newsprint, and alkaline book paper) would be studied to assess physical and chemical changes that occur during different environmental conditions. Molecular weight, tensile strength, elasticity, color and moisture content would be assessed to gauge the effects of these fluctuations on each type of paper.

This research will use material analysis to define a relative humidity range and fluctuation rate that does not cause permanent physical and chemical damage to paper-based objects. A rag paper, acidic newsprint, and modern alkaline book paper were selected to study the key factors that determine risk, paper composition and humidity excursions. Two humidity ranges will be tested, one defined as "safe", the other akin to no humidity control. The rate of humidity shift, one rapid and one slow, will control the applied shear forces. The molecular weight, tensile strength, color, and moisture content of the papers will be measured following exposure to quantify chemical and physical changes to the papers. Results will provide evidence of the risk of exposing paper-based artifacts to large or rapid changes in relative humidity. This work will clarify the conditions that best preserve paper-based artifacts using scientific data and will prolong access to original materials.

[White paper]

Project fields:
Arts, Other

Program:
Research and Development

Division:
Preservation and Access

Totals:
$74,650 (approved)
$74,648 (awarded)

Grant period:
1/1/2016 – 6/30/2018


PR-234554-16

CARNEGIE MUSEUMS OF PITTSBURGH (Pittsburgh, PA 15213-4007)
Neil Kulas (Project Director: June 2015 to August 2016)
Katie Reilly (Project Director: August 2016 to July 2017)
Sarah Minnaert (Project Director: July 2017 to September 2019)
Art Tracks: Standardizing Digital Provenance Documentation for Cultural Objects

The development of a standard for the digital sharing of provenance information on works of art through structured Linked Open Data, which will improve the usefulness of provenance data for scholarly research, exhibition programming, and museum collection management.

Art Tracks is Carnegie Museum of Art’s (CMOA) project of to standardize, digitize, and convert the provenance of works of art into structured, Linked Open Data. Phase One of this project has successfully proven the ability of Linked Open Data to create an infrastructure for sharing museum data, with field wide benefit to provenance research. Phase Two will support the extension and full integration with Linked Open Data, add bibliographic references, and convert the date logic to use existing open standards from the library community. CMOA will partner with leaders in the museum field to further test and refine the standard before promoting Art Tracks dissemination and adoption of the CMOA Provenance Standard. CMOA will strongly support the use of Linked Open Data to enrich provenance, support the interconnectedness of the museum community, improve the usefulness of provenance data, and promote new scholarship through an innovative and collaborative approach to provenance research.

Project fields:
Arts, Other

Program:
Research and Development

Division:
Preservation and Access

Totals (outright + matching):
$350,000 (approved)
$259,947 (awarded)

Grant period:
1/1/2016 – 12/31/2017


PR-234564-16

Indianapolis Museum of Art, Inc. (Indianapolis, IN 46208-3326)
Gregory D. Smith (Project Director: June 2015 to April 2018)
Rapid Pollution Off-Gassing Assessments of Museum Construction Materials by Gas Chromatographic Techniques

Development of a rapid analytical protocol for measuring volatile organic compounds (VOCs) in materials used for the display, storage, and exhibition of cultural heritage materials. The new protocol would replace the outdated and inefficient “Oddy Test,” which is currently the only way to evaluate these materials for safety in library, museum, and archival settings. A faster and more reliable approach to materials testing has been a goal of conservators and conservation scientists for more than a decade. With this request, the Indianapolis Museum of Art Conservation Science Lab will continue a year-long collaboration with Butler University to develop an alternative protocol based on evolved gas analysis (EGA) that appears to offer improvements in testing time, accuracy, and range of detectable compounds.

The Indianapolis Museum of Art (IMA) proposes to develop and optimize a gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS) analysis protocol with a broadly applicable volatiles sampling strategy to provide rapid, quantitative, and molecularly specific assessments of the emissions from construction materials considered for use in museums. The IMA Conservation Science Lab has worked to develop an alternative sampling strategy based on evolved gas analysis (EGA) that offers several advantages over other methods. Proposed research activities include further refinement of the EGA approach, comparison with other currently-practiced methodologies, examination of correlations between detected pollutants and observed damage to artists' materials, and provision of quantitative data regarding pollution levels. The instrumental protocol and resulting data will be made freely available to institutions and will directly impact confidence in the materials used within museums, libraries, and archives.

[Grant products]

Project fields:
Arts, General; Arts, Other

Program:
Research and Development

Division:
Preservation and Access

Totals:
$75,000 (approved)
$75,000 (awarded)

Grant period:
1/1/2016 – 12/31/2017


PR-234566-16

BAVC (San Francisco, CA 94110-1472)
Ben Turkus (Project Director: June 2015 to February 2017)
Kelly Haydon (Project Director: February 2017 to April 2018)
QC Tools: Quality in Quantity

Continued development of Quality Control Tools for Video Preservation (QCTools), which will address challenges associated with large-scale and progressively automated video digitization workflows.

Bay Area Video Coalition (BAVC) seeks to continue the development of the open source project Quality Control Tools for Video Preservation (QCTools). By partnering with Indiana University's Media Digitization and Preservation Initiative (MDPI), BAVC will address key challenges inherent in large-scale and progressively automated video digitization workflows, improving QCTools' usability, intuitiveness, and deployment capabilities. BAVC is committed to providing preservation services that improve efficiency and provide support for the audiovisual preservation community at large. BAVC will apply lessons learned and feedback from the preservationists using QCTools, building upon current strengths to further evolve the project and better support the field of audiovisual preservation for the humanities.

Project fields:
Interdisciplinary Studies, General

Program:
Research and Development

Division:
Preservation and Access

Totals (outright + matching):
$325,000 (approved)
$325,000 (awarded)

Grant period:
1/1/2016 – 12/31/2017