In January 2016, the AAI launched a project funded by a Research and Development grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities (#PR-234235-16). The project involves a longitudinal study of practices of creation, management, and re-use of archaeological data drawn from three geographical areas (Africa, Europe, and South America) to investigate data quality and modeling requirements for re-use by a larger research community. The Secret Life of Data (SLO-data) project aims to improve the quality of information collected during archaeological excavations across the globe, preserve this information, and share it with the public. Outcomes include exemplary open datasets, an expansion of Open Context's data publishing services, and online educational modules. The project team includes researchers at OCLC Research, the University of Michigan, and the University of Missouri- St. Louis.
- Sarah Whitcher Kansa, Ph.D., Project Director, Alexandria Archive Institute/Open Context
- Eric C. Kansa, Ph.D., Technology Director and Co-Investigator, Alexandria Archive Institute/Open Context
- Ixchel M. Faniel, Ph.D., Co-Investigator, OCLC Research
- Anne Austin, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Anthropology, University of Missouri – St. Louis
Other Team Members:
- Elizabeth Yakel, Ph.D. (University of Michigan, School of Information), Consultant
- Jennifer Jacobs, Ph.D. (Independent Scholar), Research Assistant
- Phoebe France (Ph.D. Student, University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa), Field Data Collection
- Brittany Brannon (OCLC Research), Data Analysis
Project-Related Communications and Publications:
- August 2020: Identifying Opportunities for Collective Curation During Archaeological Excavations, by Ixchel Faniel, Anne Austin, Sarah Whitcher Kansa, Eric Kansa, Jennifer Jacobs, Phoebe France. Published in the International Journal of Digital Curation.
- February 2020: Archaeological Analysis in the Information Age: Guidelines for Maximizing the Reach, Comprehensiveness, and Longevity of Data, by Kansa, Sarah Whitcher, Atici, Levent, Kansa, Eric C., & Meadow, Richard H. (2020). Advances in Archaeological Practice, 8(1), 40–52.
- October 2019: Webinar: Designing, Timing, and Determining the Feasibility of Curatorial Interventions to Support Data Reuse (Sarah Whitcher Kansa and Elizabeth Yakel, presenters). This webinar, organized and hosted by OCLC Research, explored how data production, sharing, and curation practices facilitate and inhibit data reuse and to discuss the design, timing, and feasibility of curatorial interventions that enable the smooth flow of data throughout the lifecycle. View here (length: 57 minutes).
- May 2018: Special Section of May 2018 Advances in Archaeological Practice has six papers resulting from the April 2017 forum. SLO-data publications include Data Beyond the Archive in Digital Archaeology: An Introduction to the Special Section by Sarah Whitcher Kansa and Eric C. Kansa (Published version; Open access version) and Beyond the Archive: Bridging Data Creation and Reuse in Archaeology, by Ixchel M. Faniel, Anne Austin, Eric Kansa, Sarah Whitcher Kansa, Phoebe France, Jennifer Jacobs, Ran Boytner and Elizabeth Yakel (Published version; Open access version)
- April 2018: Society for American Archaeology Conference (Washington, DC). Paper Considering Communities of Practice throughout the Data Lifecycle, by Sarah Whitcher Kansa, Ixchel M. Faniel, Anne Austin, Eric Kansa, Phoebe France, Jennifer Jacobs, Ran Boytner and Elizabeth Yakel
- April 2018: Society for American Archaeology Conference (Washington, DC). Forum Making Archaeology FAIR.
- June 2017: NEH Preservation and Access Research & Development Project Directors Meeting. View the SLO-data Project slides.
- April 2017: Society for American Archaeology Conference (Vancouver, BC). Forum Beyond Data Management: A Conversation about "Digital Data Realities".
- March 2017: Computer Applications in Archaeology Conference (Atlanta, GA). Paper A Reality Check: The Impact of Open Data in Archaeology, by Anne Austin, Eric Kansa, Ixchel Faniel, Sarah Kansa, Ran Boynter, Jennifer Jacobs, and Phoebe France
- February 2017: Critical Perspectives on the Practice of Digital Archaeology (Cambridge, MA). Presentation and Panel Discussions. View the AAI News post about this event.
About the National Endowment for the Humanities: Created in 1965 as an independent federal agency, the National Endowment for the Humanities supports research and learning in history, literature, philosophy, and other areas of the humanities by funding selected, peer-reviewed proposals from around the nation. Additional information about the National Endowment for the Humanities and its grant programs is available at: www.neh.gov.
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