The budget for digital infrastructure under the Connecting Europe Facility (CEF) has been cut from 9 billion to 1 billion euros, and Europeana, which will be funded under the CEF, is calling on supporters to help fight for Europeana's future. If you're interested in the preservation of and access to European cultural heritage, and you're not already familiar with Europeana, then you should take a moment to view their resources. Europeana is an online digital library, archive, and museum for digital cultural artefacts - it includes image, text, sound and video files from hundreds of participanting institutions across Europe. For example, users can search and find objects in Irish collections from the National Archives, the Chester Beatty Library, the Irish Manuscripts Commission, the Irish Traditional Music Archive, the National Gallery, the Royal Irish Academy and NUI Galway Library (see the Irish Manuscripts Commission for details).
Last October, DRI competed in a Europeana sponsored hackathon to extend the capabilities of Europeana through their recently released API. Our team won the prize for Application with the greatest social impact, when we adapted the Storyscope platform to curate content from Europeana into an exhibition on Ireland at the Western Front. The Royal Irish Academy has subsequently become a partner in the Decipher Project, which is developing the Storyscope platform. You can find out more about the hackathon collaboration in Natalie Harrower's guest blog for Europeana.
In addition to providing access to over a million items from Ireland, Europeana has visited Ireland on a number of occasions with their WWI 'roadshows,' where hundreds of citizens have brought personal and familial artefacts from World War One to be digitised and uploaded to Europeana in the Europeana 1914-1918 collection. The roadshow visited the National Library last March, and the Hunt Museum in Limerick last November.
If you want to support Europeana's work and raise your voice against the drastic funding cut, make sure to use the hashtag #AllezCulture in your tweets, follow Europeana on Twitter, and refer to the following leaflet for more information on why Europeana is so important to our shared cultural heritage and economy: Europeana - the Case for Funding.