The Endangered Archives Programme will host this scholarship (EAP). The Program is well-known on a global scale for its work to protect documentary history that is in danger of being destroyed, neglected, or physically harmed. EAP provides funding for international projects that aim to digitize materials and store them both locally and at the British Library. (Chevening Crowdsourcing for Western African Manuscripts Project Fellowship)
Deadline: November 1, 2022
A community crowdsourcing effort will be created by the Chevening Fellow to increase the discoverability of some 10,000 Arabic-scripted West African manuscripts that have been digitally preserved. The EAP team wants to make sure that these manuscripts are given Arabic titles in the Library’s catalog so that local communities can more easily access them. The ratio of titles that are in the original script, English, or non-standard transliterations is currently unbalanced. The Fellow will receive advice from the Library’s Digital Research team on how to set up and manage the project’s crowdsourcing components in all respects.
Whats Required of the Fellow
By utilizing their current contacts and making new ones, the Fellow will direct and promote the crowdsourcing initiative. By utilizing the crowdsourcing project’s contributions and preparing the integration of the new data into the Library’s catalog, the Fellow will bring expertise, support, and guidance to the project. He or she will also have an understanding of West African manuscript culture and interested communities.
- Create a Zooniverse crowdsourcing project for West African manuscripts (guidance will be provided)
- Promote the crowdsourcing project both inside and outside of West Africa and among relevant organizations.
- Participate in the contributors’ community
- To encourage increased interaction with the collections, publicize the initiative more widely through blog posts and collection highlights on the library’s website.
- Make at least 5,000 Arabic books that will be added to the library’s catalog.
- Make a detailed manual for establishing a crowdsourcing initiative.
- In order to develop insights into an essay or presentation for the UK Libraries & Archives Group on Africa, create a document outlining the lessons learned (SCOLMA)
- An article describing the initiative in a newsletter or journal outside of Asian and African Studies
- a staff discussion or show and tell session
- Experience working as a curator behind the scenes at a national library and important cultural institution in the UK
- Access at the staff level to the special collections and research tools of the British Library, as well as to staff training sessions, workshops, and lectures
- An in-depth knowledge of the Endangered Archives Programme’s (EAP) work and the chance to collaborate directly with British Library professionals, especially the Digital Research and EAP teams
- Possibility to improve spoken and written English through job experience and teamwork
- Opportunities for networking within the British Library and with a variety of external networks in the UK and abroad, such as participation in the UK Libraries & Archives Group on Africa (SCOLMA) conference. Training in the use of crowdsourcing techniques and the chance to promote the project and engage audiences through a variety of networking and communication channels.
- Project-based work in the British Library for a year
- for the term of the fellowship, living expenses
- Flights in economy from the home country to the UK
- The British Library will provide up to £1,000 for authorized project-related costs.
- access to a calendar of programs and events organized by the FCDO and the Chevening Secretariat in the cultural realm
- access to the more than 50,000 Chevening Alumni, a highly renowned global network
- Individuals from Mali, Niger, Nigeria, and Senegal are the target audience for the West African Manuscripts Crowdsourcing Project Fellowship.
- Proficiency with Arabic/Ajami script
- Islamic text culture knowledge that can be demonstrated
- High level of computer proficiency and experience with Excel spreadsheets
- Outstanding written and verbal English
- Knowledge of social media usage
- A passion for digital humanities
- Knowledge of metadata for catalogs
- Composed French
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