From Cross-Pollinators to a New Museum Cohort in DLF

Louisa Kwasigroch
Bethany Nowviskie



This update is from Louisa Kwasigroch (Director of Development and Outreach) and Bethany Nowviskie (Director of the Digital Library Federation).

In 2014, with the generous support of the Samuel H. Kress Foundation, the DLF welcomed four highly accomplished museum practitioners to our annual Forum, in a new program for Museum Cross-Pollinator Fellows. They each shared reflections in a series of blog posts after the Forum, often highlighting their realization of the goals and challenges libraries and museums share. As one of last year’s Fellows, Samantha Norling of the Indianapolis Museum of Art, wrote:

There are many benefits of bringing together all types of digital library practitioners—both generalists and experts—in the setting of the DLF Forum, but there are even more benefits to be derived from expanding the definition of a ‘digital library’ to include the full spectrum of digital cultural heritage collections.

After last year’s great success, we’re excited that once again the Kress Foundation will kindly support the DLF in offering fellowships for practicing museum professionals who seek more exposure to trends and technologies in digital libraries. We recently announced the names of our 2015 Museum Cross-Pollinator Fellows, and can’t wait to welcome them to the Forum and hear their thoughts about the experience.

But we’ve decided it’s time to go further. DLF members strongly value the work of our museum colleagues as educators, creative thinkers, and protectors of cultural heritage and the public good. As platforms and technologies evolve, boundaries between the work of library and museums professionals continue to blur, and global crises and challenges remind us of our shared mission. [pullquote1 quotes=”true” align=”left”]Boundaries between the work of library and museums professionals continue to blur, and global crises and challenges remind us of our shared mission.[/pullquote1] There is a greater need now more than ever (as Norling writes) to “include the full spectrum of digital cultural heritage collections” in any conversation about the future of digital libraries.

In order to learn how we can strengthen alliances and better serve the museum world, the DLF and Kress are once again banding together. We’re pleased to announce that we are subsidizing an introductory year of DLF membership to the Dallas Museum of Art, the Philadelphia Museum of Art, and the New York Art Resources Consortium (NYARC), which includes the libraries and archives of the Brooklyn Museum, The Frick Collection, and MoMA, the Museum of Modern Art.

These museums, museum libraries, and their staff will receive all the benefits of DLF membership, including:

  • Opportunities for professional development and networking through a growing set of programs and working groups.
  • Complimentary job postings on our website, listserv, and social media feeds.
  • Discounted registration for events like the 2015 Forum.
  • Opportunities to apply for DLF-sponsored travel and fellowship awards.
  • The ability to submit to our member-contributed resources, like our Community Spotlight and FactSheets series, highlighting large-scale, multi-partner initiatives.
  • The invitation to share their current projects, challenges, and questions via our Contribute series.

In addition to their general participation in the DLF Forum, representatives of these organizations will engage in a series of continuing conversations with DLF staff over the course of the next year, to inform us about how to better engage and support museums and museum libraries. Look to our website for updates in the months to come.

Please join us in warmly welcoming our new museum members, and be on the lookout for them this fall in Vancouver!

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