Join us for a Research Talk

Studying the Curation of Complex Visual Formats in Information Institutions

Complex visual formats present special curation and preservation challenges, particularly in cases where libraries, archives, and museums produce digital copies to take the place of analog media originals. Digitization and other preservation and curation activities can be understood as interpretive practices that can significantly impact the meaning and evidence of research data. This talk will discuss research that studies the typically black boxed context of the video digitization lab, an institutionally-sanctioned space in which media preservationists are tasked with translating invisible analog video signals to digital surrogates for preservation purposes. Through a qualitative-interpretive approach, this research examines how media preservationists construct knowledge in their workplace activities to produce digital surrogates that are perceived in their institutions to be legitimate. They are found to engage their eyes and bodies to form certainty about the invisible analog signals that they must shepherd through a chain of analog and digital equipment. This research offers new insight into how institutionalized practices, standards, and the educated perception of curators shape digital copying. It shows how studying data creators and curators in the context of their workplaces can yield insights that can inform the design of new curation tools and infrastructures. The concluding part of this talk will connect these insights with upcoming projects on the design of 3D/VR infrastructure and curation tools.


Dr. Zack Lischer-Katz is a postdoctoral research fellow at University of Oklahoma Libraries. He regularly presents at conferences, including the Association for Information Science and Technology (ASIST), iConference, iPres, and the Society for the History of Authorship, Reading, and Publishing (SHARP). His research has appeared in Library Trends, International Journal of Digital Curation, Information Technology and Libraries, and First Monday. He received his PhD in Communication, Information & Library Studies from Rutgers University, and his MA in Cinema Studies from New York University.


1:30 p.m. to 3 p.m. Feb. 24, 2020


Harvill, Room 460