Welcome to the open access site for The Collective Wisdom Handbook: perspectives on crowdsourcing in cultural heritage, written through the Collective Wisdom project and shared here to provide access to our first version as we consider options for formal publication.
We have published this first version of our collaborative text to provide early access to our work, and to invite comment and discussion from anyone interested in crowdsourcing, citizen science, citizen history, digital / online volunteer projects, programmes, tools or platforms with cultural heritage collections.
This book was written in two week-long book sprints by 16 collaborators from the US and the UK, brought together with funding from the UK’s Arts and Humanities Research Council. We are aware that geographic, language and other factors limited those able to attend and thereby limited the range of examples, case studies and literature from practitioners and theorists we were able to draw upon, and wrote a period of open review into our initial proposal.
Our aim was to write a high-quality book that provides a comprehensive, practical and authoritative guide to crowdsourcing and digitally-enabled participation projects in the cultural heritage sector. We want it to be an effective road map for cultural institutions hoping to use crowdsourcing for the first time, a resource for institutions already using crowdsourcing to benchmark their work, and a source of insights into the ‘behind the scenes’ work required for participatory projects.
Because this is an early release, it’s not as polished as the PDF-based version. For example, the formatting that helped Case Studies and Perspectives stand out from the page has been lost. While we work on an update, we hope you’ll forgive these small issues in the name of providing access and the ability to comment on our text sooner rather than later.
Writing for diverse audiences from the varied perspectives represented in our group of collaborators is not easy, particularly when working remotely and within a limited time frame, so we asked early readers to comment on our book. To borrow a phrase from another community review project, we welcomed help in pointing out any places that may require additional explanation, or that may not be accessible to newcomers in those professions and fields. We’d always love to know how you might use the book or individual chapters in teaching, research and your own practice.
The review period for this publication closed on August 9, 2021. After this, we’ll begin re-editing to incorporate feedback (and fix oddities in referencing etc.) and produce our final version of the book.
Please feel free to email the project leads - Mia Ridge, Samantha Blickhan and Meghan Ferriter - via firstname.lastname@example.org (include ‘Collective Wisdom’ in the subject line) with any comments or questions you’d rather make privately.