Scheduled for 2:30-3:20pm in Theresa Lang Auditorium (202) 55 W 13th Street
With the massive digitization of primary sources that has taken place over the past decade or so there are far more resources available online for research and teaching than was even imaginable a short time ago. This work by libraries, archives, commercial entities and even researchers themselves has led to availability of materials that were once only obtainable in a few research libraries or a single archive somewhere in the world. This abundance provides scholars who might otherwise not be able to obtain research materials with access that’s vital to their research. But with this abundance has come a proliferation of platforms and a loss of coherence in the means for discovery of primary sources. This dispersal means that today’s scholar has a much more difficult time knowing where to look for sources.
What I’d like to talk about in this session is what kinds of tools and mechanisms historians will need to discover primary sources as ever larger parts of the historical record are available and dispersed on many platforms across the web. What is the future of discovery of archival materials and other kinds of sources? How is scholarship based on primary sources changing and what implications will these changes have for the tools that researchers use to find these sources?