Explanatory note for the future digital tools

The first year Emergence revealed the great diversity of situations and types of archives according to the projects. This observation was the starting point for a reflection on the convergence of problematics in a context of profound transformation of the uses and practices of the public: in the age of the Internet, access to information is supposed to be available and immediate. We asked ourselves about the method of data processing and description to meet the scientific needs of the projects as well as how to make them accessible to the public through different tools and representations. Our objective was therefore to define how to implement cultural and technical interoperability.

To try to meet this dual objective, we turned to a single description model, namely the international archival standard ISAD/G , and an open source software using this standard, AtoM .

Towards a common description culture

The use of this tool and this standard allowed us first of all to develop a culture of common description between the members of the project but also between the partner institutions. We consider that data producers are the first actors of interoperability: it is the way they follow the chosen conceptual model and data architecture that conditions the quality of the disseminated data. Each member of the project must be able to understand their working environment and the principles on which they must describe the identified archives. The role of Louise Corvasier, archivist, has been fundamental in the emergence of this common culture. It will be necessary to continue these efforts throughout the implementation of the various projects.

Aggregation, convergence and openness of data

The pooling of this standardised and open tool makes it possible to envisage right now the possibility of irrigating other production or dissemination tools thanks to its interoperable nature from a technical point of view. All the data produced by the projects will indeed be accessible in a simple way thanks to a computer language which is also standardized: XML-EAD. The AtoM tool should therefore be considered as a data reservoir for our research projects but also as a tool that can be used by multiple institutional or civil society actors. The data produced is more broadly and resolutely in line with the opendata movement.

Benjamin SUC

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