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Digital Collections and Content (DCC)


The Digital Collections and Content (DCC) project was a multi-phase research effort funded by IMLS to explore the socio-technical requirements for a successful digital aggregation. Conceived in 2002 as a combined collection registry and metadata repository aimed to provide a single access point to collections built from digitization efforts funded through IMLS's National Leadership Grant and LSTA programs, the IMLS DCC project has explored key digital libraries issues ranging from collaboration stakeholder needs to metadata quality and interoperability.

Beginning in 2007, the second phase of the IMLS DCC project, through the DCC project's Opening History aggregation, which gathered together digital collections of digitized and born-digital U.S. cultural heritage resources, explored the effects of targeted collection development policies. IMLS DCC researchers explored how aggregators impact access to cultural heritage materials and how digital libraries can better leverage relationships between collection-level and item-level metadata in federated digital repositories. The lessons learned from these research activities in turn informed the refinement of methodologies to preserve content, improve search system results and make content more useful for scholars and the public.

Read more at the project site.

Project PI(s)

PI: Carole Palmer
Project Contact: Jacob Jett
Funded by: Institute of Museum and Library Services
Grant number: LG-06-07-0020

Research Area(s)

Data Curation
Research and education initiatives focused on challenges associated with the curation and federation of digital collections for long-term distributed use.  Work in this area relates to all parts …

Project Team

Carole L. Palmer (PI)
Jacob Jett (Project Coordinator)
Virgil E. Varvel Jr. (Researcher)
Katrina Fenlon (Graduate Assistant)
Peter Organisciak (Graduate Assistant)
Megan Senseney (Graduate Assistant)


Wickett, K. M., Isaac, A., Doerr, M., Fenlon, K., Palmer, C., & Meghini, C. (2014). Representing Cultural Collections in Digital Aggregation and Exchange Environments. D-Lib Magazine, 20(5/6). doi:10.1045/may2014-wickett
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Palmer, C. L., Wickett, K. M., & Isaac, A. (2014, March). Digital Collection Contexts: Intellectual and Organizational Functions at Scale. Workshop presented at iConference 2014, Berlin, Germany.
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Fenlon, K. (2013, November). Exploring Evaluative Methods for Large-Scale Local History. Paper presented at ASIS&T 2013, Montreal, Canada.
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Wickett, K. M., Isaac, A., Fenlon, K., Doerr, M., Meghini, C., Palmer, C. L., & Jett, J. (2013). Modeling Cultural Collections for Digital Aggregation and Exchange Environments. (CIRSS Technical Report 201310-1). Champaign, IL: Center for Informatics Research in Science and Scholarship, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
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All publications


July 26, 2011
DLF/DCC participates in DPLA Beta Sprint
CIRSS is collaborating with CLIR/DLF on a Digital Public Library Data Sprint contribution. The project is being funded by the Mellon Foundation. See our video and press release.

Past Events

November 7, 2012

Collection Examples for Europeana Data Model

We will discussing example collections for modeling collections from the IMLS Digital Collections and Content aggregation in the Europeana Data Model. We are hoping to use these examples to show the b…

November 9, 2011

IMLS DCC and the Europeana Data Model: Convergences and Next Steps

 IMLS DCC is collaborating with Europeana, a massive international digital cultural heritage aggregation. This session will be a conversation about next steps toward meeting the challenges to interop…

September 28, 2011

The DLF-DCC Linked Data Prototype for the Digital Public Library of America

This ERRT session will review the efforts to translate IMLS Digital Collection and Content collection-level XML records into Linked Data.• Mapping from XML to RDF/XML syntaxes• Analyzing Collectio…

March 30, 2011

The Digital Public Library of America Initiative: Considering Content and Scope

The Digital Public Library of America (DPLA) initiative began in December 2010 with support from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation. This ERRT session will provide an overview of the initiative and the fi…