Texas Digital Library Conference System, 2014 Texas Conference on Digital Libraries

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Aggregating Digital Collections Metadata into the DPLA: A Regional Tiered Services Model at the Mountain West Digital Library
Sandra A. McIntyre

Last modified: 2014-03-14


As a service hub to the Digital Public Library of America (http://dp.la), the Mountain West Digital Library (http://mwdl.org) shares over 800,000 metadata records from more than 20 repositories located in Utah, Nevada, Idaho, Arizona, Montana, and Oregon.  From common metadata standards, to digitization and hosting services, to aggregation and normalization, the MWDL collaborative provides a range of services to a distributed network of memory institutions in the region, helping them to share their digital collections broadly.

Over the past twelve years, to distribute the services burden, the MWDL and its more than 120 partners have devised a tiered services model, providing different services at different levels of the collaborative. Tiering services brings benefits to everyone in the network, as it allows for efficiencies of scale on certain services that lend themselves to centralization, while keeping other services close to the partners and materials involved. It also distributes the cost of services across many institutions and allows for different cost-recovery models to be in effect simultaneously. On the other hand, a tiered services model also creates potential issues for the collaborative, including the management of more complex workflows, a need for closer collaboration to coordinate varying practices, and emerging issues of fairness and participation with respect to funding and governance.

With this Prezi presentation, MWDL director Sandra McIntyre will show how the MWDL distributed network inter-operates to offer a distinctive service mix, what issues have emerged with growth, and how the collaborative is moving forward with support from the Digital Public Library of America to adapt the tiered services model to meet the needs of more memory institutions in the Mountain West.


Digital Public Library of America; service hub; digital library; collaboration; organizational development; metadata harvesting; aggregation; tiered services; funding; governance