Inspiring Ireland 1916 Brings the Public and Private Stories of 1916 to the World.

    For Immediate Release

    Dublin Castle
    20 November 2015 -- Inspiring Ireland 1916 Sneak Preview

    Dr Natalie Harrower (right) presents a sneak preview of Inspiring Ireland 1916 with Ministers Jimmy Deenihan and Heather Humphreys

    At a special sneak preview at today’s Global Irish Economic Forum, Minister Heather Humphrey (Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht) and Minister Jimmy Deenihan (Minister for Diaspora Affairs) revealed an exciting new phase of the Inspiring Ireland project, which will be launched as part of the Ireland 2016 Centenary Programme. 

    Inspiring Ireland 1916 will launch a fresh series of online exhibits through the first half of 2016, focusing on the known and not-so-known stories of the Rising, and the events and lives that were affected along the way. Inspiring Ireland 1916: Weaving Public and Private Narratives exhibits digitised photos, diaries, posters, aural recordings, video, ephemera and more alongside expert narrative, to tell the stories that surround the Rising, and paint a picture of everyday lives in 1916. Combining iconic objects from the National Archives of Ireland, National Library of Ireland, the National Museum of Ireland and RTÉ alongside ‘found’ objects from private collections, Inspiring Ireland 1916 creates a dynamic, multi-media reflection on the people and events of 1916, and its legacy.


    Inspiring Ireland 1916 from Digital Repository of Ireland on Vimeo.


    Minister Heather Humphreys said: “The Ireland 2016 Centenary Programme is an open invitation to Irish people at home and abroad to get involved as we remember the events that led to the foundation of the State. Through its specially curated online resource, Inspiring Ireland is helping us to reach out to the global Irish community. With a mix of objects and stories from our National Cultural Institutions and from members of the public, Inspiring Ireland 1916 will shed new light and bring new perspectives to our exploration of life 100 years ago.”

    Jimmy Deenihan TD., Minister of State at Departments of the Taoiseach and Foreign Affairs and Trade with special responsibility for the Diaspora added: “It is a matter of great pride for me to see that our diaspora is afforded such prominence and such a distinctive role in next year’s programme of events. This project is a great example of how our diaspora can really take part in next year’s events – the project allows people through an online facility to view some of our most precious artefacts relating to 1916 and hear the stories and narratives of this time. Our friends and family living abroad can also bring their artefacts and precious family objects to specially organised collection days and their stories and family histories will be brought to life and shared with the world”.

    At today’s sneak preview, Dr. Natalie Harrower, the Digital Repository of Ireland’s Director, revealed that the first exhibition, to be launched in January 2016, will be about Women and Revolution:

    “By combining public content cared for by Ireland’s national cultural institutions with private items shared by members of the public via our Collection Days, Inspiring Ireland 1916 is able to show a side of the Rising that is not as well documented. In our first exhibition, we use the lens of women’s lives to explore class, politics, grief and survival through this remarkable period in Irish history. And this is just the start of the stories that have inspired Ireland through the Rising.”

    Inspiring Ireland is built on the preservation infrastructure of the Digital Repository of Ireland, which means that digital objects are preserved for long term access and discovery, ensuring Ireland’s digital cultural heritage is available to all for posterity.


    For further information on Inspiring Ireland and DRI contact:

    Caroline McGee, Digital Repository of Ireland, 01 609 0683
    Inspiring Ireland website:
    Digital Repository of Ireland:
    More information on DRI:
    Twitter: @dri_ireland

    For information on Ireland 2016: 

    Madeline Boughton
    Tel: 087 797 7827
    Web site:
    Twitter: @ireland2016


    Notes for Editors

    Inspiring Ireland 1916 is a project by the Digital Repository of Ireland (DRI), in partnership with NAI, NLI, NMI and RTÉ and funded by the Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, and the Minister for Diaspora Affairs at the Department of the Taoiseach in collaboration with Ireland 2016 and the Department of Foreign Affairs. 

    Inspiring Ireland 1916 is the second phase of an ambitious project to make Ireland’s cultural treasures accessible online to a broad national and international audience. It presents a new series of seven themed exhibitions that weaves public and private narratives relating to the events of 1916 using a combination of objects from Ireland’s National Cultural Institutions alongside publically collected memorabilia. The first phase of the project was launched in 2014 as a pilot with content from eight of Ireland’s national cultural institutions.

    Inspiring Ireland 1916 will open the nation’s cultural heritage to a wider viewership, allowing visitors to access rich images and interpretation by historians of the events that took place in the period leading to, during and after Easter Week 1916. It provides an indispensible tool for educators, the public, and the Diaspora to access cultural heritage at their fingertips.

    The online portal is powered by the Digital Repository of Ireland’s preservation infrastructure, which means that all objects on the site are being preserved for the long term in a certified trusted digital repository. 

    The Ireland 2016 Centenary Programme, led by Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, Heather Humphreys, T.D., is a year-long programme of activity to commemorate the events of the 1916 Rising, to reflect on our achievements over the last 100 years and to look towards Ireland’s future. 

    Further information on Ireland 2016 is available from

    DRI Blog: Magdalene Oral History Collection published


    Photo: Fiona Ward 

    Author: Ruth Geraghty

    Oral histories from survivors of the Magdalene laundries

    The newly published ‘Magdalene Oral History collection’ makes available testimonies from people that were both directly and indirectly involved with the Magdalene institutions, including survivors of the Magdalene Laundries, relatives, key informants (such as paid hands and medical staff), members of the religious orders, regular visitors and anyone else who had a story to tell that relates to these institutions. In Ireland, Magdalene Laundries were institutions operated by religious orders in which women, called ‘penitents’, worked at laundry and other for-profit enterprises, although they were never paid for their labour and were denied freedom of movement. The last Magdalene institution ceased operating as a commercial laundry on 25 October 1996.

    The Magdalene Oral History Project was a Government of Ireland Collaborative Research Project and was funded by the Irish Research Council. The overall objective of the project was to contribute towards a better understanding of the system of Magdalene institutions that existed in Ireland in the twentieth century. Personal testimonies from informants, including 35 survivors, were gathered as part of the research project ‘Magdalene Institutions: Recording an Oral and Archival History’ that was led by Dr Katherine O’Donnell, then the Director of the Women’s Studies Centre at University College Dublin now in UCD’s School of Philosophy and her research team, Dr Sinead Pembroke and Claire McGettrick. Over the coming months these oral histories, in the form of interview transcripts and audio recordings, will be published in tranches by the Irish Qualitative Data Archive (IQDA) in the Digital Repository of Ireland.

    The pilot phase of the Magdalene Oral History Project was conducted in 2012 in conjunction with the survivor advocacy group Justice for Magdalenes (now JFM Research) with support from the Feminist Review Trust. This project involved the gathering of testimonies from survivors, family members and others with experience of the Magdalene Laundries for the purposes of submitting evidence to the Inter-Departmental Committee on the Magdalene Laundries. The pilot phase project followed the ethical guidelines that had been drawn up by Dr O’Donnell for the Irish Research Council project, and witnesses were given the option for their testimonies to be included in the oral history archive.

    The Magdalene Oral History Project began in October 2012 and most interviews were conducted from that time until September 2013.  A key objective of the project was to make interviews and archival documents as widely available as possible to the public, nonetheless this had to be balanced with the ethical protocol to protect the confidentiality and privacy of all participants.  Interviewees were strongly advised to use pseudonyms, however some survivors felt very strongly about being identified and they were supported in this as the project makes a distinction between secrecy and privacy.  Each oral history was anonymised on a case-by-case basis; named individuals were given pseudonyms except where permission was given or if they are public figures, while locations and dates were accurately transcribed unless they impact on a vulnerable individual.  The audio files will also be anonymised unless the interviewee has requested that they are destroyed following transcription.  To ensure privacy, each oral history has a pseudonym key which is password-protected and securely held, and interviewees can choose whether they wish their identities to be released at some time in the future or not at all.  The redaction process is conducted transparently, with amendments noted on a cover sheet accompanying each transcript. (Adapted from:,418340,en.pdf)

    The Magdalene Oral History Project archive contains 80 oral history testimonies (from 91 interviewees), averaging over two hours each, which will be published in the DRI repository as the Magdalene Oral History collection. As of November 2015, seventeen publicly available transcripts have been published with more to follow in the coming months.

    The research team were guided by IQDA staff on best practice for preparing interview data for long term preservation and dissemination through the DRI, whereby an assessment of the sensitivity risk of each interview file was conducted (see IQDA Best Practice in Archiving Data guide for more on this), and access conditions were assigned according to the degree of sensitivity identified. Data that was deemed suitable for public release will be made available under a Creative Commons licence (CC-BY-NC) and in some cases only an anonymised version of the transcript will be publicly released under this licence. More sensitive data will be made available along a spectrum of restrictive access conditions, depending on the degree of sensitivity and risk of harm identified. For example some of the collection will be made available under a teaching and research licence, for academic research and teaching purposes only. While the majority of the transcripts will be anonymised, a small group of testimonies are from women who are already in the public domain on the issue. In addition the researchers were mindful that the release coincided with the establishment of a public redress scheme for survivors of the Magdalene Laundries, therefore the release date of the first tranche of transcripts was postponed to late 2015.

    By sharing this collection digitally through the DRI, the researchers intend that a wide community of scholars, teachers, artists and policy makers will be able to gain knowledge of our recent past to better understand how abusive systems came to be established and to make better decisions about the vulnerable in our communities. The intention is that this collection will form the basis of new educational programmes, art work (such as documentaries, films literature and paintings), and public policy initiatives. In 2013 Professor Gordon Lynch and TrueTube collaborated with the Magdalene Oral History Project to produce an educational video and lesson plans designed to introduce British and Irish 16-year old students to the ethical issues raised in consideration of the Magdalene Laundry system, which can be found here. In 2014 the British Universities Learning On Screen Awards: awarded this project First Place for Courseware & Curriculum Non-Broadcast Award and it was also Short-listed for St Martin’s Trust Religious Broadcasting Award (Internet Section).

    Linked to the digital collection on the DRI, over 5,000 pages of archival materials will also be made available through UCD Archives. These materials include comprehensive papers from the Justice for Magdalenes campaign focusing on State involvement with the Magdalene institutions, which are currently being digitised at Waterford Institution of Technology.  The archive also includes laundry account books for the Limerick Magdalene which seem to detail extensive commercial activity and electoral rolls which provide a register of the women held in the laundries, which has been an unexplored resource to date and most valuable in terms of the lack of access to the records held by the religious sisters. The collection also includes personal collections of papers from interviewees, artists and activists.

    Further information on the Magdalene Institutions project can be found here. Please note:  Magdalene Institutions project is no longer conducting interviews however academics at Waterford Institute of Technology have established a similar oral history project. Those interested in being interviewed should visit the project's website here or contact Dr. Jennifer Yeager at or 051 302251.

    To read more entries in the DRI blog, please visit the Blog Page.


    New staff at DRI!

    We're delighted to welcome two new staff members to DRI, as part of the Inspiring Ireland 1916 project.

    Caroline McGee is the new Project Creative Lead for Inspiring Ireland 1916, the next phase of the multiple-award-winning cultural heritage resource Inspiring Ireland. It presents a brand new series of exhibitions of cultural artefacts, stories and interpretation that surround the events of 1916. Caroline has wide-ranging practical experience in digital collections management and as a curator of Irish cultural heritage assets. Read more about her here.

    Kevin Long has also joined Inspiring Ireland 1916 as Digital Data Curator. Kevin is a professional librarian with extensive experience in the digital media environment. Read more about him here.

    We look forward to working with Caroline and Kevin on Inspiring Ireland 1916! 

    Inspiring Ireland 1916 Collection Day

    Inspiring Ireland 1916 is the next phase of the multiple-award-winning cultural heritage resource Inspiring Ireland. It presents a brand new series of exhibitions of cultural artefacts, stories and interpretation surrounding the events of 1916.

    Available online from January 2016, the exhibitions will curate iconic national treasures alongside privately-owned memorabilia which will be gathered at national collection days over the coming months. Contributors invited to the first event in the National Library will have their material digitised and catalogued by Inspiring Ireland experts and preserved within the Digital Repository of Ireland’s infrastructure, while selected content will go on to become part of the Inspiring Ireland 1916 resource.

    The project is part of the Ireland 2016 centenary programme and is funded by the Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht and the office of Minister for Diaspora Affairs at the Department of the Taoiseach. 

    The event page for the Collection Day can be viewed here.

    Representing Ireland at CISA Paris

    DRI’s Digital Archivist Rebecca Grant has been selected to represent Ireland at the upcoming International Conference for Archival Management (CISA) in Paris on November. The conference brings together archivists from 18 countries, and this year’s theme is ‘Archival services and their digital ecosystem’. To follow the conference proceedings, follow DRI and Rebecca on Twitter during the event.

    More information about the conference, first founded in 2012, can be found here (French-language).

    DRI Blog: Preservation and Trust: the DSA certification process

    Author: Peter Tiernan

    Preservation and Trust: the DSA certification process

    At the Digital Repository of Ireland, the development of the Repository has been based on the implementation of best practices in preservation, and the trust of our depositors. Our depositors must feel assured that the digital content in the Repository will be safeguarded and preserved into the future. But how does the DRI achieve this level of trust and assurance?

    Our aim is to become a 'trusted digital repository'. What is this, you ask? Well, as defined in the RLG-OCLC report “Trusted Digital Repositories: Attributes and Responsibilities”, a trusted digital repository is:

    "one whose mission is to provide reliable, long-term access to managed digital resources to its designated community, now and in the future."

    It does go further into it but keeps it intentionally vague. Other definitions include:

    "hav[ing] an organizational system that supports [the] long-term viability of the repository" and "design[ing] its system(s) in accordance with commonly accepted conventions and standards"

    All pretty high-level stuff! While some of these definitions seem a little daunting, using existing TDR audits and certifications can help with the process.

    TDR audits and certifications provide the dual function of providing specific, actionable guidelines as well as certification to show the world that one has thought about the issues and implemented the solutions into their infrastructure and organisation. We identified two relevant audits and certifications for the Repository: The Data Seal of Approval and ISO16363.

    ISO16363 certification is externally audited and therefore gives the strongest guarantee of trust. We are currently following these guidelines and will effectively become compliant. When it becomes possible to be audited externally we will be ready. ISO16363 is based on the Trusted Digital Repositories and Audit Checklist “TRAC” standard which we initially consulted.

    By comparison, the Data Seal of Approval is self audited. This does not project the same level of trust as an external audit but helps us to think about the issues and areas we need to work on and provides an important learning experience. This path of completing the DSA first, then moving onto ISO16363 is recommended by the European Framework for Audit and Certification of Digital Repositories.

    When applying for the DSA certification, we worked through the DSA guidelines and documentation which encourage clear communication of all preservation processes and procedures. Indeed, this is an important aspect when applying for certification.

    For example Guideline 6 asks: “Does the repository have a preservation policy?”

    Our Preservation Policy document is in development separately but is referenced extensively throughout the DSA. The development of this policy is in itself a significant undertaking and one which has made us think and rethink our processes. It will be an important document that will be read and analysed by our users and stakeholders so great care is being taken with putting it together.

    Two of the DSA guidelines in particular caused us to think more deeply about aspects of our policies. DSA Guideline 6 asks “Are data recovery provisions in place? What are they?”, while Guideline 9 asks: “Does the repository have a crisis management plan?”

    We had been developing our data recovery procedures from a disaster recovery viewpoint and were including these in a disaster recovery document. But through these two separate questions, the DSA has caused us to change our approach and view data recovery as distinct from disaster/crisis management. The documents referenced in reply to these questions are now being developed separately.

    Some of the guidelines are open to interpretation. For example Guideline 12 asks: “Does the repository maintain links to metadata and to other datasets, and if so, how?”

    The Finnish Social Science Data Archive answers this as follows:

    “Linking between the metadata and data are maintained in the operational database, and FSD metadata includes links to other datasets. In addition, the metadata includes links to publications based on the data.”

    While the UCD Digital Library gives this answer:

    “Links to metadata are provided through the Digital Library web interface and are expressed as menu links when descriptive records are displayed. The Digital Library Web API also exposes metadata via content negotiation in a range of formats (DC, MODS, various RDF serialisations of descriptive metadata); RDF serialisations of metadata include links to external datasets (as Linked Data references).”

    The first repository interprets the guideline as referring to links between metadata and data in storage while the second interprets it as web hyperlinks to view metadata. This is not to say either answer is incorrect, but that the question is vague and that a degree of interpretation is required by the repository. Extra explanation or ancillary documentation would be useful especially considering that developing repositories might not have a high level of domain specific knowledge and expertise. (All repositories that complete the DSA and receive certification are available to read on the DSA website.)  

    Self-auditing for the DSA can be a long process, but it is important to engage with it as a first step to becoming a TDR. The time we spent going through the guidelines ended up being time well spent – on 1 July, just a few days after launching DRI, we were delighted to hear that we had been granted the Data Seal of Approval!

    We will continue to work on our policies and procedures in line with DSA guidelines and are looking ahead to eventual approval by the ISO16363 certification board. Watch this space.

    To read more entries in the DRI blog, please visit the Blog Page.

    DRI Requirements Specifications published

    We have just published our Requirements Specifications! This document details the current required specifications of the DRI, at time of publication. It describes the technical, structural and business requirements that have been designed and implemented since the start of the project. It can be accessed via our About page and our Publications page.

    DRI at 2016 RDA Plenary

    Natalie Harrower, Director of DRI, and Rebecca Grant, Digital Archivist, are attending the Research Data Alliance 6th Plenary Meeting this week in Paris. The theme of the meeting is Enterprise Engagement with a focus on Research Data for Climate Change and the programme features workshops, presentations and discussions on a wide range of topics relevant to producing, sharing and working with research data. Follow our Twitter account for updates from Paris!

    Inspiring Ireland nominated for World Summit Award


    Inspiring Ireland, a platform created by DRI in collaboration with many of Ireland's leading cultural institutions to share Ireland's cultural heritage with an international audience, has been nominated for a prestigious digital innovation award.

    The World Summit Awards, an international UN-based award, highlight mobile and internet applications that address social challenges, and have a significant impact in the fields of health, education, environment, government or inclusion. The award is partnered with the key United Nations organizations and agencies; to date more than 178 countries are actively involved. Inspiring Ireland is nominated in the Government & Open Data category, which means that it is considered the best product in Ireland in this category. It has been nominated alongside other significant Irish projects and products including, among others, CoderDojo, Local Authority Finances and the Yes Equality Campaign.

    This nomination complements Inspiring Ireland's success at the 2015 eGovernment Awards in January of this year. The platform won the event’s Overall Award, which includes the finalists from all projects and organisations shortlisted for an award in 2014. In addition to the Overall Winner award, Inspiring Ireland also won awards in two specific categories, including ‘Promoting Ireland Overseas,’ and in the category for ‘Open Source’.

    A full list of the 2015 WSA nominees can be viewed here.

    DRI Code of Ethics

    DRI has recently published its current Code of Ethics. The purpose of the Code is to lay out the ethical standards that guide all aspects of our professional behaviour at DRI. It is a voluntarily published document, indicating its importance to DRI as publicly funded institution. 

    Dr Sandra Collins, Director of DRI at the time the Code was first drafted, said:

    'This Code is intended as a living document, and we will review over time and ensure it is always fit for purpose and reflective of our principles and our practice.'

    The Code of Ethics can be accessed here and from the footer of our home page.

    EDF2015 preliminary programme launched


    The preliminary programme for the European Data Forum 2015 is now available via the EDF website.  EDF2015 will take place on November 16-17, 2015 in Luxembourg. Planned events include keynote talks, expert panels and sessions on a range of topics including Future Data Vision, Industrial Challenges & Applications, Big and Open Data, Contribution/role of Public Institutions, Newest Trends in Big Data Technology, The Open Data Incubator for Europe (ODINE), Educating Data Scientists & Data Skills and Multilingual Big Data for eCommerce and e-Services. There will also be information sessions about Horizon2020 calls and funding opportunities as well as study presentations. Additionally, there will be a poster session and the awarding of the annual eccenca European Data Innovator Award.

    The current programme is in progress and speaker information will be available soon. The preliminary programme can be downloaded here and registration details can be found here.


    Eoin O'Dell joins DRI

    The Digital Repository of Ireland is delighted to announce the appointment of Dr. Eoin O’Dell as our official legal advisor. Dr. O’Dell has contributed to policy development at DRI since 2014, including key legal documentation and workflows which allow the DRI to function as a Trusted Digital Repository.

    He is an Associate Professor of Law and Chair of the Fellows in Trinity College Dublin, and researches and publishes primarily in the fields of freedom of expression, and private and commercial law. He has been President of the Irish Association of Law Teachers, a Member of the Council and Executive of the Society of Legal Scholars in the UK and Ireland, and Editor of the Dublin University Law Journal. He was a member of the group which advised the Department of Justice on the Defamation Act, 2009; he was a member of the Advisory Group on a European Civil Code which advised the EU Commission on common principles of European private law; and he is a member of the Statute Law Revision Committee advising the Department of Public Service and Reform on the process of revising the Irish Statute Book. He was Chair of the Copyright Review Group which presented its final report to the Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation in October 2013.

    We would like to take this opportunity to thank Dr. O’Dell for his work to date, and welcome him to the DRI team.

    DRI in the News

    General Post Office, flag staff at corner, May 17 [1916]. Photograph copyright: Royal Irish Academy

    Following on from the addition of the Royal Irish Academy's Westropp Collection to our Repository (and our corresponding blog post) we've seen a flurry of media interest in the collection. On August 11, the Irish Times published a half-page spread about the photographs in both their print and online editions. The following day saw stories on the RTE News website and on Irish Central, as well as on The Journal, the Irish Post and even the BBC! The RTE News article features a particularly nice arrangement of images in a slideshow.

    The collection lends itself well to news stories as it contains photographs of Dublin city centre in the aftermath of the 1916 Rising, taken by antiquarian Thomas Westropp. These photographs complement other 1916-related material in our Repository, including the Letters of 1916 project and the Capuchins and the 1916 Revolution collection.

    View the Westropp Collection in the DRI Repository here!

    Watch talks from DPASSH 2015

    The 1st Annual Conference on Digital Preservation for the Arts, Social Sciences and Humanities (DPASSH 2015) was hosted by DRI in Croke Park on 25-26 June. The conference was a great success, with speakers from all over the world presenting on the theme: “Shaping our Legacy: Safeguarding the Social and Cultural Record”. We're pleased to announce that videos of the conference are now available to view, featuring keynote speakers, expert panels, peer-reviewed papers and the launch of the Digital Repository of Ireland by Minister Damien English, TD. To watch the videos, please visit the DPASSH programme page and click each presentation's title. 

    DRI Blog: Documenting Destruction: Westropp Collection and the 1916 Rising

    Author: Dr. Sharon Webb

    Documenting Destruction: the Westropp Photographic Collection and the 1916 Rising

    Since we “went live” last month we have been busy adding new collections to our (‘Data Seal of Approval’ approved) Repository. One such collection is the Royal Irish Academy’s ‘Photographs of Dublin City Centre after the 1916 Rebellion’.

    The forty photographs in this collection, taken by antiquarian Thomas Johnson Westropp (1860-1922), document key buildings, monuments and streets in Dublin in the aftermath of the 1916 Easter Rising. Westropp donated these photographs to the Royal Irish Academy in June 1916, just weeks after the events of the Rising unfolded. When we spoke to Siobhan Fitzpatrick, Librarian (RIA), about Westropp’s collection and in particular his commitment and interest in documenting the destruction of Dublin’s landscape, she said:

    'He obviously went to great lengths to take many of the photographs which are preserved in the collection.  The fact that he had the images developed, printed and mounted in an album within a week conveys a certain sense of urgency and the fact that he deposited the album with the Academy for safe keeping shows his strong archival sense and the importance he placed on preserving the record. Similar albums were deposited with other repositories in Dublin confirming Westropp’s archival commitment.' (23 July 2015)

    Westropp’s collection captures the destruction of Dublin’s architectural landscape following a week of fighting, artillery fire and bombardment between Irish rebels and British forces. His pictures show the damage caused to a number of iconic Dublin buildings, including the General Post Office (GPO), which was the rebel headquarters, and depict a number of famous Dublin streets including O’Connell Street, then called Sackville Street, strewn with rubble and glass - the fragments of a rising which changed the course of Irish history.

    Westropp’s approach to documenting the destruction is representative of his training and of the accuracy and care with which he approached his work. Of this, Siobhan states that the photographs

    ‘demonstrate the intrepid nature of [Westropp’s] recording of landscapes and buildings. Throughout his life he recorded buildings in Ireland as seen through the prism of an antiquarian scholar.  His training as an engineer ensured that he recorded dimensions and other details with a high level of accuracy.  His images of Dublin in ruins may be seen in the context of this lifelong study of buildings in various states of disrepair or even ruin.' (23 July 2015)

    A number of photographs in the collection document specific sites from a number of vantage points. For example there are photographs of O’Connell Street (Sackville Street) and the GPO from different angles and street levels including aerial views taken from the top of Nelson's Pillar, which was blown up in 1966, and a photo of O’Connell Street taken from the south Liffey quays. Westropp also documented the corner of Middle Abbey St before and after the fall of the 'corner house'.

    Corner of Middle Abbey St, before fall of corner house, May 17 [1916]. Photograph copyright: Royal Irish Academy.

    Corner of Middle Abbey St, after fall of corner house, May 17 1916. Photograph copyright: Royal Irish Academy.

    These photographs capture the devastation of Dublin’s urban landscape but the scenes also provide insights into Dublin life and its citizens, who were no doubt affected by the Rising.

    When we look beyond the buildings, the rubble, the dust, we get a sense of what it might have been like to stand amongst the chaotic aftermath: photos in the collection depict the clean up operation, the onlookers, the workers, the British soldiers standing guard, and life getting back to “normal” as people walk past the ruins. Different photos show labourers with their horse drawn carriages cleaning up rubble from outside the GPO, a small boy struggling with a cart which looks like it is full of luggage, while another photo shows a large group of people looking at the ruins of the “corner house” (above). Photos portray people going about their daily routine, while one particular, poignant, image includes a small boy looking directly at the camera (below) - what did he think of the Dublin’s new landscape, of the Rising, of the fighting? Indeed, what did he think of Westropp’s camera? Taking a step back from the camera, what did Westropp think standing at his many vantage points, climbing Nelson’s Pillar to take shots of the GPO, of Henry Street? What did he think, surrounded by the rubble of the GPO, light filtering through the steel girders and the Rising’s dust still settling

    General Post Office, flag staff at corner, May 17 [1916]. Photograph copyright: Royal Irish Academy

    If any of our readers can identify the small boy in this picture, do let us know! Our contact page is here.

    As mentioned, Westropp ‘developed, printed and mounted’ the photographs into ‘an album within a week’ of taking them. He deposited a copy of the album with the Royal Irish Academy as well as other repositories in Dublin. Similarly, the digital collection, now available in our Repository, is not necessarily unique to us since a number of digital copies exist elsewhere on the “interweb”! Indeed, as I was finishing this blog post, TCD Library posted about their Westropp collection - I was literally pipped at the [blog] post. Westropp I’m sure would have delighted in the use of his collections and the continued success of his archival methods in the digital age. LOCKSS (lots of copies keeps stuff safe) springs to mind!

    The Royal Irish Academy collection in the Digital Repository of Ireland can be reviewed and studied in relation to other, complementary, digital artefacts (letters, postcards, documents, diaries, witness accounts) from other institutions. When I started this blog I initially wanted to just write about the Westropp collection but after spending a few hours (perhaps a few afternoons is more accurate) perusing the different collections I was amazed at the various connections and historical narratives I was able to follow.

    Search “1916” in the Repository and you retrieve a whole host of items that enable you to piece together elements of the Rising, from the physical damage, as illustrated through Westropp’s photos, to the human (citizen and soldier, child and adult) cost or sacrifice of the Rebellion. Collections related to the 1916 Rising include Maynooth University’s ‘Letters of 1916’, National College of Art and Design’s ‘Michael Healy Collection’ and the Irish Capuchin Provincial Archives, ‘The Capuchins and the Irish Revolution’ Collection.

    In each collection you can discover different aspects of the Rising, the events, the aftermath as well as the political situation, before, during, and after the Rising. One intriguing connection between the Westropp collection and the others is the use of images from the Rising and the reconstruction effort on postcards. Does this demonstrate the public re-imagining or re-appropriation of the Rising from a rebellion with little public support to an event that garnered public sympathy? Perhaps it demonstrates the political opinion of the media or those that controlled the printing press? It certainly tells us something of the relationship between the correspondents, the sender and receiver of the postcards.  

    For example, the Capuchin collection includes a ‘postcard to Fr. Aloysius Travers, Church Street, from ‘E. Ní F’ declaring that a ‘very small room for your friend is ready in August’. Significantly, ‘the photographic print of the postcard shows refurbishment work on Liberty Hall after its destruction in the 1916 Rising’; one of the buildings which Westropp photographed. Liberty Hall was strategically an important building, it was said to be a garrison for the Volunteers but it was also the headquarters for the Irish socialist movement and described ‘as the centre of social anarchy, the brain of every riot and disturbance’ ('Easter 1916: The Irish Rebellion', Charles Townshend, 2005, p.191).

    Liberty Hall symbolised (and still does) the socialist movement that gained traction during the early twentieth century under the leadership and ideological thinking of James Connolly (1868-1916). Connolly, one of the seven signatories of the Irish Proclamation, became a working class martyr following his execution for his involvement in the Rising. Indeed the banner across the façade of Liberty hall, as shown in the postcard to Travers reads: 'James Connolly murdered May 12th 1916'. 

    Liberty Hall bombarded house Beresford Place May 17 [1916]. Photograph copyright: Royal Irish Academy

    Other objects in the Repository that complement Westropp’s photos include a postcard showing the interior of the GPO, taken ‘after the insurrection’. This ‘postcard was written on 11 May, the day before the final executions of the leaders of the Rising’. Significantly, ‘The Papers of Fr. Aloysius Travers, OFM Cap.’, which is a sub-collection of the ‘The Capuchins and the Irish Revolution’ collection held at the Irish Capuchin Provincial Archives, contains correspondence between Fr. Travers and some of the prisoners of the Rising. Travers’ memoirs (included in the digital collection) also contain his recollections of the Rising and include eyewitness accounts of some of the executions, including James Connolly.

    In ‘My Memories of the 1916 Rising’ Travers writes:

    'Thirty-four years have gone since the historic Rising which led to the independence of our Nation - rather, I should say, to the freedom of twenty-six counties, for six of them are still in bondage.'

    Travers also discusses how the Rising has been perceived, documented and re-appropriated since 1916 and refers to the complex task of reconstructing the events:

    'The story, in years to come, will be constructed from various contexts pieced together into a whole, with the more important events sifted from the trivial and insignificant, and errors corrected. Every little detail, no matter how small in itself, provided it is factual and not imaginative, may be valuable in the compilation of that history.'

    99 years after the event we know ‘that history’ is still being compiled, constructed and pieced together through the litany of artefacts, objects, documents, letters, etc., from the period. Digital objects from the various online collections help us to understand in greater detail the events of 1916 and as an exercise in public, digital, history they allow the public to investigate and interrogate those artefacts that have long since informed the creation of ‘that history’ by professional historians.

    Important artefacts that demonstrate the complexity of the events of April 1916, include a letter from Eoin MacNeill (1867-1945) to Éamon de Valera (1882-1975). The letter, contained in Maynooth University’s Letters of 1916 collection, was sent from MacNeill (founder of the Irish Volunteers in 1913 but ‘against a rising without a firm chance of success or without British provocation’) in an effort to stop any Volunteer operations that day (Easter Sunday).

    'In this letter...[MacNeill] issues a direct order [that] no movement of Irish Volunteers is to take place that day. He also commands that the order be made known to other officers. The order was issued to de Valera as MacDonagh was "not accessible'".

    Westropp’s photographic collection demonstrates the aftermath of the Rising but letters like these and other digital artefacts in the Repository, such as  the correspondence of Travers and the many related collections online, provide the contextual information that shows the political, social and human consequences. Collections related to 1916 - correspondence with prisoners, his eyewitness accounts - all document destruction, but from different viewpoints, angles and perspectives.

    But before I let you go to explore these collections (and if you have read this blog straight through without ducking in and out of the many links to the various objects, I commend you - you are more disciplined than I), the motivation for the Digital Repository of Ireland is not just to bring collections like those described above to the fore, but to preserve them in the long term for future study and interpretation. A fact which Westropp would truly appreciate.


    Street map of Dublin showing locations featured in the Westropp Collection. DRI's mapping functionality allows you to view the various objects in the mapping tool. We achieved this by adding geo co-ordinates to the metadata.


    To read more entries in the DRI blog, please visit the Blog Page.

    Watch our 'Introduction to DRI' video

    In case you missed it, our Introduction to DRI video is now viewable on our home page or by clicking the play button above.

    First screened at the launch of DRI on 25 June 2015, this video gives an overview of who we are, what we do and the initial collections we have in our repository. This includes contributions from DRI staff and partners, and glimpses into fascinating collections like Letters of 1916, Life Histories and Social Change Study, the Clarke Design Studios and more!

    The launch of DRI also saw the publication of the reports: 'Building the Digital Repository of Ireland Infrastructure' and 'Funding Models for Open Access Repositories', as well as the 'How to DRI' series of factsheets. Visit our publications page to view these and all of our publications to date.

    Digital Repository of Ireland awarded Data Seal of Approval

    DRI is delighted to announce that it has been awarded the Data Seal of Approval. 

    The DSA is awarded by an international board of data repositories to those organisations who meet the national and international guidelines for digital data archiving.

    The DSA ensures that data producers are given the assurance that their data and associated materials will be stored in a reliable manner and can be reused. It also provides funding bodies with the confidence that data will remain available for reuse and their investments will not be lost. As well as that, it enables data consumers to assess repositories where data are held and supports data repositories in the efficient archiving and distribution of data.

    This award marks is a significant milestone in DRI policy development. 

    “This is an enormously important to DRI”, stated Aileen O’Carroll, Policy Manager at DRI. ”We are committed to building and sustaining a Trusted Digital Repository. This award establishes that we have succeeded in this aim and that our processes and infrastructures are underlined by robust policy which meets international standards. We are strongly placed to care for the digital social science and humanities research data created now and in the future.”

    The DRI assessment, along with those others awarded, can be found here.


    DRI Decade of Centenaries Digital Preservation Award Winners Announced at DPASSH Conference

    For Immediate Release

    25th June 2015

    DRI Decade of Centenaries Digital Preservation Award Winners Announced at DPASSH Conference

    From left to right, Aisling Conroy (NCAD), Donna Romano (NCAD), Rebecca Grant (DRI), Ellen Murphy (DCA), Dr. Sandra Collins (DRI), Dr. Brian Kirby (Irish Capuchin Provincial Archives, Dr. Eucharia Meehan (IRC), Dr. Sharon Webb (DRI/DAH)


    Dr Eucharia Meehan announced three awards today at a major international conference on digital preservation in Croke Park.

    Three awards were presented to archival collections which contribute significantly to the national dialogue on the Decade of Centenaries. Sponsored by the Irish Research Council’s New Foundations programme, the award provided winners with the services of professional digital archivists and librarians to prepare their collections for long-term digital preservation in the Digital Repository of Ireland. The DRI team was delighted to welcome Director of the Irish Research Council, Dr. Eucharia Meehan to present these awards to the Dublin City Archives, the Irish Capuchin Provincial Archives, and the National Irish Visual Arts Library at NCAD. 

    The Digital Preservation for the Arts, Social Sciences and Humanities (DPASSH, ) conference, like the DRI, is concerned with the challenge of preserving our digital cultural, social and historical record in a manner that safeguards their access now and in the future.   The conference theme, “Shaping our Legacy: Safeguarding the Social and Cultural Record”, makes reference to the destruction of the Irish Public Records Office during the Irish Civil War in 1922 and is used as an analogy to highlight the vulnerability and fragility of our digital cultural record. The ‘DRI Decade of Centenaries Digital Preservation Awards’ aims to highlight the same issue. They particularly focus on the digital commemorations of the Centenaries, which are at risk of loss by the 2115 Decade of Bi-Centenaries if action is not taken.

    The award winning collections include material from the Dublin City Electoral Lists for the period 1915; correspondence and papers of Irish Capuchin priests, detailing their involvement with participants in the national struggle during 1916; and pages from the diary of stained glass artist Michael Healy from Easter Week 1916. These collections are now available at

    Dr Meehan congratulated the award winners on this recognition of their important contributions to the social and cultural record of the Decade of Centenaries. Dr Meehan also commended the DRI, and in particular Dr Sharon Webb and Rebecca Grant, for this successful initiative which highlights the important issue of digital preservation for the Humanities and Social Sciences.


    Notes for editors

    About the Digital Repository of Ireland

    The Digital Repository of Ireland is a national trusted digital repository for Ireland's social and cultural data. The repository links together and preserves both historical and contemporary data held by Irish institutions, providing a central internet access point and interactive multimedia tools. As a national e-infrastructure for the future of education and research in the humanities and social sciences, DRI is available for use by the public, students and scholars.

    The Digital Repository of Ireland is built by a research consortium of six academic partners working together to deliver the repository, policies, guidelines and training. These research consortium partners are: Royal Irish Academy (RIA, lead institute), Maynooth University (MU), Trinity College Dublin (TCD), Dublin Institute of Technology (DIT), National University of Ireland, Galway (NUIG), and National College of Art and Design (NCAD). DRI is also supported by a network of academic, cultural, social, and industry partners, including the National Library of Ireland (NLI), the National Archives of Ireland (NAI) and RTÉ. Originally funded from the Higher Education Authority PRTLI Cycle 5 for the period of 2011-2015, DRI has also received awards from Enterprise Ireland, Science Foundation Ireland, The European Commission's Seventh Framework Programme (FP7) and the Ireland Funds, and Horizon 2020, the EU Framework Programme for Research and Innovation. DRI’s partner project, Inspiring Ireland ( won three eGovernment awards in 2015.

    We at the Digital Repository of Ireland believe our national mandate is best achieved through partnership, so continue to build relationships and collaborations with national and international centres of excellence in digital preservation, and with the owners and custodians of cultural and social content.


    About the Irish Research Council

    Established in mid-2012 under the Government’s Public Sector Reform Plan, the Irish Research Council (‘the Council’), a merger of two former councils (the Irish Research Council for Humanities and Social Sciences, IRCHSS, and the Irish Research Council for Science, Engineering and Technology, IRCSET), is an associated agency of the Department of Education and Skills (DES) and operates under the aegis of the Higher Education Authority (HEA).

    The Council was established and mandated to –

    Fund excellent research within, and between, all disciplines, and in doing so to enhance Ireland’s international reputation as a centre for research and learning.
    Support the education and skills development of excellent individual early stage researchers and cultivate agile independent researchers and thinkers, whilst offering a range of opportunities which support diverse career paths.
    Enrich the pool of knowledge and expertise available for addressing Ireland’s current and future challenges, whether societal, cultural or economic and deliver for citizens through collaboration and enabling knowledge exchange with government departments and agencies, enterprise and civic society.
    Provide policy advice on postgraduate education and on more general research matters to the HEA and other national and international bodies.  In giving the Council this role, the Minister for Research and Innovation requested that particular attention be given to the arts, humanities and social sciences (AHSS).


    For more information please contact Dr. Sharon Webb at

    Building the DRI Infrastructure Report launched

    DRI's latest report - on building the DRI infrastructure - was released today to coincide with the final day of DPASSH: Digital Preservation for the Arts, Social Sciences and Humanities. For all DRI publications, please visit our Publications page.

    This report outlines the technology choices made in building a robust and scalable infrastructure, including the storage cluster, physical virtual machine (VM) servers and a virtualised environment to host the various services required to deliver the repository functionality.

    The report covers managing and preserving digital objects via the Hydra framework, Fedora for storage, Solr indexing for search, and Ceph for the software-defined storage solution. It also discusses access infrastructure, including Ruby on Rails views, JQuery, use of the SASS language and the Zen Grids grid framework.


    Minister English launches Digital Repository of Ireland

    For Immediate Release
    25th June 2015

    Minister English launches Digital Repository of Ireland (DRI) – Online Treasury of Cultural and Social Content
    L-R: Professor Mary Daly, President of Royal Irish Academy; Dr. Sandra Collins, Director Digital Repository of Ireland; Minister Damien English, TD; Dr. Natalie Harrower, Deputy Director Digital Repository of Ireland.

    Damien English TD, Minister for Skills, Research and Innovation today launched the Digital Repository of Ireland (DRI) at a major international conference on digital preservation in Croke Park.

    The DRI is an online, open digital repository for content from the humanities, social sciences and cultural domains. The Digital Repository of Ireland features beautiful and moving collections, including those from our broad range of demonstrator projects – Letters of 1916, the Clarke Stained Glass Studios Archive, Irish Lifetimes, Kilkenny Design Workshops, Saol agus Saothar Sheáin Mhic Ghiollarnáth, and the Teresa Deevy Archive – as well as the award winning Inspiring Ireland collections, featuring content from Ireland’s National Cultural Institutions, and rich collections of multi-media content from our partners Raidió Teilifís Éireann (RTÉ) and the Contemporary Music Centre (CMC). The repository can be accessed online at:

    Commenting on the launch, Mr Damien English, TD, Minister for Skills, Research and Innovation said: “Fostering collaboration in the academic sector is central to Government’s Action Plan for Jobs and the launch of the Digital Repository of Ireland is indicative of the powerful outcomes which can be achieved when strategic collaborations, with support from cultural, social and industry partners, are facilitated. Together the partners involved in this project have created a valuable resource which will serve to safeguard Ireland’s rich social and cultural data, benefitting research, education and the public at large.” 

    Director Dr. Sandra Collins invites everyone to visit DRI online, “DRI offers exciting historical, cultural and contemporary content that tells the story of Ireland and its people. The content comes from some of the finest institutions across Ireland, and is available without charge for people to view and to enjoy. Some of the collections we care for are restricted by copyright or the sensitive nature of the data, but researchers can request access. We are an open repository, and we want people to explore and enjoy their cultural and social heritage”.

    Deputy Director Dr. Natalie Harrower said “DRI has been built from the ground up, following rigorous national requirements analysis, international best practices in data archiving and preservation, and aided by a series of rich collaborations and partnerships with heritage and research institutions across the country. The Repository not only makes available Ireland’s social sciences and humanities data to researchers and the public – it preserves it for future generations. Protecting against data loss helps to protect against the loss of our collective cultural memory.”

    The Repository contains tens of thousands of high quality, metadata-rich digital objects, including video clips, photographs, digitised manuscripts, oral histories, sound recordings, digitised paintings and museum objects, books and letters. The Digital Repository of Ireland is the result of nearly four years of research, software development, policy and legal framework design, and data curation by digital archivists and librarians.


    Notes for editors

    About the Digital Repository of Ireland

    The Digital Repository of Ireland is a national trusted digital repository for Ireland's social and cultural data. The repository links together and preserves both historical and contemporary data held by Irish institutions, providing a central internet access point and interactive multimedia tools. As a national e-infrastructure for the future of education and research in the humanities and social sciences, DRI is available for use by the public, students and scholars.

    The Digital Repository of Ireland is built by a research consortium of six academic partners working together to deliver the repository, policies, guidelines and training. These research consortium partners are: Royal Irish Academy (RIA, lead institute), Maynooth University (MU), Trinity College Dublin (TCD), Dublin Institute of Technology (DIT), National University of Ireland, Galway (NUIG), and National College of Art and Design (NCAD). DRI is also supported by a network of academic, cultural, social, and industry partners, including the National Library of Ireland (NLI), the National Archives of Ireland (NAI) and RTÉ. Originally funded from the Higher Education Authority PRTLI Cycle 5 for the period of 2011-2015, DRI has also received awards from Enterprise Ireland, Science Foundation Ireland, The European Commission's Seventh Framework Programme (FP7) and the Ireland Funds, and Horizon 2020, the EU Framework Programme for Research and Innovation. DRI’s partner project, Inspiring Ireland ( won three eGovernment awards in 2015.

    We at the Digital Repository of Ireland believe our national mandate is best achieved through partnership, so continue to build relationships and collaborations with national and international centres of excellence in digital preservation, and with the owners and custodians of cultural and social content.

    For more info contact:

    Frances Narkiewicz
    Programme Manager, DRI
    Mobile: 087 696 2426


    - - - - - - -

    Seolann an tAire English Taisclann Dhigiteach na hÉireann - Stórchiste ar líne d’Ábhar Cultúrtha agus Sóisialta
    25 Meitheamh 2015

    Sheol an tAire Scileanna, Taighde agus Nuálaíochta Damien English TD Taisclann Dhigiteach na hÉireann go poiblí inniu ag an mórchomhdháil idirnáisiúnta faoi chaomhnú digiteach i bPáirc an Chrócaigh.

    Taisclann oscailte ar líne í TDÉ d’ábhar ó réimsí na nDaonnachtaí, na nEolaíochtaí Sóisialta agus an Chultúir. Tá bailiúcháin áille thochtmhara i dTaisclann Dhigiteach na hÉireann lena n-airítear iad siúd ó réimse leathan de na tionscnaimh thaispeántacha - Letters of 1916, the Clarke Stained Glass Studios Archive, Irish Lifetimes, Kilkenny Design Workshops, Saol agus Saothar Sheáin Mhic Ghiollarnáth, agus Cartlann Teresa Deevy - chomh maith le bailiúcháin rathúla Inspiring Ireland a bhfuil ábhar iontu ó Institiúidí Cultúrtha Náisiúnta, agus bailiúcháin luachmhara d’abhar ilmheánach ónár gcomhpháirtithe Raidió Teilifís Éireann (RTÉ) agus Contemporary Music Centre (CMC). Is féidir teacht ar ábhar luachmhar na taisclainne ar líne ag

    Ag labhairt dó ar an seoladh dúirt an tUasal Damien English, TD, An tAire Scileanna, Taighde agus Nuálaíochta: ”Tá cothú an chomhoibrithe san earnáil acadúil ag croílár Plean Gníomhaíochta do Phoist an Rialtais, agus is comhartha é seoladh Thaisclann Digiteach na hÉireann de fheabhas na dtorthaí gur féidir a bhaint amach nuair a éascaítear comhoibrithe straitéiseacha le tacaíocht ó pháirtnéirí cultúrtha, sóisialta agus tionsclaíochta. Chruthaigh na comhpháirtithe sa tionscadal seo acmhainn luachmhar a chuideoidh le sonraí saibhre cultúrtha agus sóisialta na hÉireann a chosaint, gníomh a rachaidh chun tairbhe an taighde, an léinn agus an phobail i gcoitinne.

    Tugann an Stiúrthóir, an Dr Sandra Collins cuireadh do chách cuairt a thabhairt ar TDÉ ar líne, ‘Tá ábhar iontach staire, cultúrtha agus comhaoiseach curtha ar fáil ag TDÉ a insíonn scéal na hÉireann agus a muintire. As roinnt de mhórinstitiúidí ar fud na hÉireann a thagann an t-ábhar agus is féidir taitneamh a bhaint as agus breathnú air saor in aisce. Cuireadh srianta ar roinnt de na bailiúcháin atá faoinár gcúram toisc cúrsaí cóipchirt nó sonraí íogaire a bheith iontu, ach is féidir le taighdeoirí rochtain a iarraidh. Taisclann oscailte muid, agus teastaíonn uainn go mbreathnóidh daoine ar ár n-oidhreacht chultúrtha agus shóisialta agus go mbainfidh siad sult as.’

    Deir an Leas-Stiúrthóir, an Dr Natalie Harrower, ‘Tógadh TDÉ ón mbonn aníos, ag cloí le dian-anailís riachtanas náisiúnta, dea-chleachtas idirnáisiúnta maidir le cartlannaíocht agus caomhnú sonraí, agus ba mhór an cuidiú na comhshaothair agus na comhpáirtíochtaí le hinstitiúidí oidhreachta agus taighde ar fud na tíre. Ní amháin go gcuireann an Taisclann sonraí daonnachtaí, agus eolaíochtaí sóisialta ar fáil do thaighdeoirí agus don phobal - caomhnaíonn sí iad freisin do na glúine atá le teacht. Nuair a chosnaítear sonraí ar a gcailliúint, cosnaítear ár gcuimhne chultúrtha chomhchoiteann ar a cailliúint freisin.

    Tá na mílte oibiacht dhigiteach ar ardchaighdeán agus ar mhórán meiteashonraí sa Taisclann lena n-áirítear píosaí físe, grianghraif, lámhscríbhinní digitithe, stairsheanchas, taifid fuaime, pictiúir dhigitithe mar aon le míreanna iarsmalainne, leabhair agus litreacha. Leanann TDÉ as beagnach ceithre bliana de thaighde, forbairt bogearraí, dearadh creatlaí polasaí agus dlí, agus coimeádaíocht sonraí le cartlannaithe digiteacha agus leabharlannaithe.



    Nótaí d’Eagarthóirí

    Faoi Thaisclann Dhigiteach na hÉireann

    Taisclann dhigiteach iontaofa í Taisclann Dhigiteach na hÉireann (TDÉ) do shonraí sóisialta agus cultúrtha na hÉireann. Caomhnaíonn agus nascann an taisclann sonraí stairiúla agus comhaimseartha atá i seilbh institiúidí na hÉireann, agus feidhmíonn sí mar lárphointe rochtana idirlín agus uirlisí ilmheánacha idirghníomhacha. Ríomh-bhonneagar náisiúnta í TDÉ le haghaidh thodhchaí an oideachais agus an taighde sna daonnachtaí agus sna heolaíochtaí sóisialta, agus tá sí ar fáil don phobal, do mhic léinn agus do lucht léinn.

    Cuibhreannas taighde de shé pháirtí acadúla a chruthaigh Taisclann Dhigiteach na hÉireann, iad ag obair i bpáirt a chéile chun an taisclann, polasaithe, treoirlínte agus traenáil a chur ar fáil. Is iad seo a leanas na páirtithe: Acadamh Ríoga na hÉireann (RIA, an phríomhinstitiúid), Ollscoil Mhá Nuad (MU), Coláiste na Tríonóide, Baile Átha Cliath (TCD), Institiúid Teicneolaíochta Átha Cliath (DIT), Ollscoil na hÉireann, Gaillimh (OÉG), agus Coláiste Náisiúnta Ealaíne is Deartha (NCAD). Tacaíonn gréasán de pháirtithe acadúla, cultúrtha, sóisialta agus tionsclaíocha freisin le TDÉ, lena n-áirítear Leabharlann Náisiúnta na hÉireann (NLI), Cartlann Náisiúnta na hÉireann (NAI) agus RTÉ. Cistíodh TDÉ ar dtús ó PRTLI Timthriall 5 de chuid an Údaráis um Ard-Oideachas don tréimhse 2011-2015, ina theannta sin fuair TDÉ cistiú ó Fhiontraíocht Éireann, Fondúireacht Eolaíochta Éireann (SFI), an Seachtú Creatchlár de chuid an Choimisiúin Eorpaigh (FP7), na Ireland Funds agus Fís 2020, Creatchlár an AE um Thaighde agus Nuálaíocht. Bhuaigh Inspiring Ireland (, tionscadal comhpháirtíochta TDÉ, trí ghradam ríomhsheirbhísí an Rialtais in 2015.

    Creidimidne ag Taisclann Dhigiteach na hÉireann gur fearr ár sainordú náisiúnta a chur i gcrích trí chomhpháirtíocht, dá bhrí sin, tá caidreamh agus comhoibriú á bhforbairt againn le hionaid bharr feabhais náisiúnta agus idirnáisiúnta i réimse an chaomhnaithe dhigitigh, agus le húinéirí agus le coimeádaithe ábhair chultúrtha agus shóisialta.

    Le haghaidh tuilleadh eolais téigh i dteagmháil le

    Frances Narkiewicz
    Programme Manager, DRI
    Póca: 087 696 2426


    DRI Blog: Challenges that come with archiving tweets in line with Twitter’s Developer Policy

    Author: Clare Lanigan

    The challenge of preserving social media is an important topic in the contemporary data landscape. In the case of Twitter, millions of tweets are issued every day,  and the conversations that happen on Twitter form an essential record of our time; but like all records, this conversation can disappear if not adequately preserved. Vint Cerf from Google spoke to the media recently about the danger of a “digital dark age”, as current storage methods become obsolete. To most people, especially those working in digital preservation, this was not surprising information. 

    Finding sustainable, efficient ways to gather, preserve and provide access to social media archival data is the driving force behind the The Social Repository of Ireland, a joint project of Digital Humanities and Journalism group at the Insight Centre for Data Analytics and the Digital Repository of Ireland at the Royal Irish Academy. Over the past year or so, the Social Repository of Ireland has investigated the feasibility of developing an effective social media archiving tool for Twitter data relating to significant events in Ireland. During our research, we have identified some important issues that anyone thinking of setting up a Twitter archive needs to be aware of. In this article, we look at those issues, examining the historical relationship between developers and Twitter, changes to the Developer Rules over time and how other projects have fared when attempting to gather and preserve tweet data in a social media archive.

    Developers and Twitter

    Twitter makes their API available to developers to allow them build tools that work with Twitter data. Before 2011, most projects of this kind (for example, Gnip, Topsy and Datasift) operated independently, but since then many of them have become official Twitter Partners. This is a result of several changes in Twitter’s Developer Policy over the years -- changes which have alternately delighted and devastated developers. The most (in)famous of these changes was in 2011, when Twitter made it a lot more difficult for third-party developers from gathering and syndicating tweet data in any meaningful way. To many, these changes were surprising, considering the relative openness and freedom Twitter had allowed developers prior to 2011.

    2006 - 2010: the open years

    Between 2006 (the year of Twitter’s birth) and 2010 a number of tools and projects, both proprietary and openly accessible, used Twitter’s API to develop scraper and aggregation tools. At that time, Twitter’s developer policy did not explicitly prohibit this kind of use. Projects such as Storify, Topsy and TwapperKeeper were launched. During this period, Twitter had a stronger focus on open data and making public tweets reasonably available. This approach was centred on the idea of Twitter content as an archive of our time: a ‘legacy approach’. It reached its zenith in 2010 when Twitter signed an agreement with the Library of Congress to archive the entire Twitterstream from 2006 onwards and for all tweets going forward. This appeared to reflect a commitment to the principles of open data and archival transparency.

    Changes to the Developer Rules, 2011

    The ‘legacy approach’ described above appeared to change somewhat in 2011 when Twitter made changes to its Developer Rules. There appeared to be somewhat less focus on making tweet data openly accessible to applications not owned by Twitter.  This change may have been brought about by the worldwide recession which was at its height at that time. While it’s not possible to say for sure what Twitter’s motivations were, it may be that the company hoped to gain new revenue streams by partnering with and monetising the various tweet scrapers and aggregators such as Topsy, TwapperKeeper, Datasift, etc. that third-party companies and programmers had developed.  Many larger tools and projects became official Twitter partners (e.g. Gnip, Hootsuite). 

    The text of the 2011 Developer Rules is no longer available, but the essence of the changes was that third-party apps and tools were no longer permitted to ‘replicate the core Twitter experience’. This was described in more detail by Ryan Sarver, at the time Director of Platform at Twitter:

    “Developers have told us that they’d like more guidance from us about the best opportunities to build on Twitter.  More specifically, developers ask us if they should build client apps that mimic or reproduce the mainstream Twitter consumer client experience.  The answer is no,”

    Sarver also made explicit Twitter’s desire to create a ‘less fragmented’ experience for Twitter users by reducing the number of ‘consumer client apps that are not owned or operated by Twitter’

    Third-party developers were not explicitly barred from gathering or syndicating Twitter data but they were expected to keep within a certain size (‘size’ in this context referring to the number of user tokens needed by an app on a daily basis). The number of user tokens allowed per day varied from 100,000 to 50,000, and the new Developer Rules stated that apps wishing to extend their user tokens needed to contact Twitter to gain permission. Even then , it was not specified what exactly an app needed to do to gain permission from Twitter. The rules seemed vague, perhaps to ensure that Twitter would retain control over as many apps and tools as possible.

    Realistically, Twitter were not able to shut down widely used apps such as Tweetdeck, even though they were technically violating the new Developer Rules. Instead, Twitter appeared to adopt a policy of partnership. Tweetdeck, Hootsuite, Datasift and Gnip were among the products that became Certified Product Partners.

    It is possible that part of the motivation behind the new rules was the need, to some extent, for Twitter to monetise users’ tweets. Around the time of the Developer Rules change, Twitter suspended products developed by the company Ubermedia that it believed were violating its trademarks and the privacy of users. Crucially, in their takedown notice, Twitter stated, that the products were ‘changing the content of users’ Tweets in order to make money.’ Combined with new restrictions that had been placed on third-party tools and apps and the Certified Partnership Program for apps that had already passed a certain size, this focus on monetisation indicated that Twitter wished to keep financial profit from user tweets within the company itself.

    Many developers were unhappy with the new rules. Some speculated that their severity would drive innovators away from using Twitter, but realistically the service remains as popular as ever, so any project that wishes to analyse data relating to news events are required to rely on Twitter’s API.

    The Developer Rules have been relaxed slightly since 2011, but are still somewhat restrictive for third-party apps.  Many of the projects that shut down in 2011 did not restart. In some cases, this may have had as much to do with the separate end of funding streams as with the Twitter shutdown. Others were absorbed into larger products, e.g. TwapperKeeper into HootSuite (eventually partnered with Twitter).

    Since then, data scrapers that operate commercially and behind a paywall, even ones that are not official Twitter Partners, are generally not interfered with by Twitter. Their 2014 purchase of Gnip, their largest proprietary data reseller, appears to represent a decision by Twitter to take complete financial control of their data reselling and buy the company that was already a leader in the field.

    Data scraping and collection carried out by non-commercial or research tools and projects is still potentially vulnerable, as the case of ScraperWiki, a tool that allows users to build basic data scraping tools without requiring programming knowledge. Despite the fact that Twitter does allow data gathering for non-commercial purposes, the Developer Rules are remarkably vague as to what constitutes ‘syndication’ (See below for the relevant text from the Rules). Their own Twitter Archive service (developed in 2012) appears to hold the non-commercial monopoly on making ‘human-readable’ datasets available of user’s own accounts and searches. However, services such as the Internet Archive continue to make datasets available in raw unstructured format, without attracting Twitter’s ire. This is probably because the average user will have little use for unstructured data in a non-human-readable code such as JSON.

    The current situation

    According to the current (2015) Twitter Developer Policy, tools and projects may gather Twitter data but there are restrictions on what may be done with it. As has always been the case, many of these restrictions are in place to protect users’ privacy; to prevent compromise of Twitter’s product and/or to prevent the distribution of spam. However, section I, part 6 of the Policy places restrictions on the number of tweets a tool may gather and on how that information is distributed. The section states:

    “If you provide Content to third parties, including downloadable datasets of Content or an API that returns Content, you will only distribute or allow download of Tweet IDs and/or User IDs. You may, however, provide export via non-automated means (e.g., download of spreadsheets or PDF files, or use of a “save as” button) of up to 50,000 public Tweets and/or User Objects per user of your Service, per day.” (Twitter Developer Policy Section I, part 6)

    This statement is vaguely contradictory - on the one hand the first part prohibits open access by users of tweet gathering tools to complete tweet data, but the second part indicates that this data may be accessed but only by ‘non-automated’ means (manually downloading spreadsheets or PDFs of data) and comprising not more than 50,000 public tweets per day. It is essentially a moderate climb-down from the 2011 rules, an acknowledgement by Twitter that social media data cannot be completely firewalled, and while it is worth Twitter’s while to attempt to streamline the user experience as much as possible, some amount of third-party development of the API is still going to happen.

    Who made it, who didn’t

    The following are some examples of tools and projects that have been banned from scraping Twitter data since 2011, and of some that survived the ‘cull’ (This list is not exhaustive). While specific reasons for shutdown or survival appear to vary, there are some common threads in many of these cases.

    TwapperKeeper: A JISC-funded tool for searching, collating and exporting user tweets. It was designed for individual users and researchers and operated as Twitter archiving service from 2010-2011. In 2011 Twitter charged it with violation of their Developer Rules under the syndication of content clause. Twitter classified exporting tweets in usable format as syndication and the service was shut down. The product was absorbed into HootSuite and the open source version still provides access to unstructured raw tweet data similar to Internet Archive.

    Web Ecology Project 140kit: This was a project funded by Harvard University and started in 2007 with the aim of aggregating and annotating the Twitterstream for researchers to use. While it ceased operations in 2011, this may have had as much to do with its funding coming to an end as its violation of the 2011 Developer Rules. It also may have challenged Twitter’s anti-spam rules when the Web Ecology Project held a competition in 2009 inviting developers to create a Twitter spambot.

    ScraperWiki: This is a more recent (2014) example of a tool being shut down by Twitter for Developer Rules violations. ScraperWiki is a data crawling and harvesting tool that allows users to export and manage social media data in easy-to-use graphics. It continues to provide its service to users collecting data from sources other than Twitter, but as of 2014 it cannot scrape and aggregate Twitter data due to violation of the syndication of content clause. ScraperWiki themselves speculated on some possible reasons for this on their blog. As well as reflecting Twitter’s increasing focus on the market, the shutdown may have been triggered by concerns about privacy, because a harvesting tool may not be able to match real-time tweet deletion. ScraperWiki also speculated that Twitter were keenly aware that there is a gap between business use of the Twitter firehose and the data-gathering needs of ordinary users. It may have targeted ScraperWiki because it saw them as filling the ‘ordinary user’ remit.

    When you compare the tools and services that survived 2011, the common factor seems to be the lack of free, easy access to a human-readable presentation of the collected data. For example, ARCOMEM, a FP7-funded European Commission project geared towards using digital and web archives to enhance community memory, was not challenged, perhaps because a professional or university login was required to view the collected data and metadata. The Tweepository, a project developed by the University of Southampton as part of their ePrints digital repository, did not fall foul of the 2011 rules, also perhaps because of the ‘wall’ of a university login between the user and the data. While neither of these services charged financially, the ‘distancing’ effect of an institutional login appeared to allow them to stay on just the right side of Twitter’s vague syndication rules.


    Twitter data is the social archive of the early 21st century. No archive of social media can afford to neglect looking for solutions to the problems of collecting, preserving and making this data available. When it comes to scalability, projects such as the Social Repository of Ireland, with a remit limited to one country, have a better chance of developing tools to manage data than huge-scale projects such as the Library of Congress Twitter archive. The Library of Congress also has yet to devise a workable solution for access to the Twitter archive.

    However, scalability and access mean nothing if the data cannot be archived in the first place. Because Twitter is a private company, archivists and programmers are subject their developer policy. From an approach prioritising open data and shared access, the company appears to have shifted towards a more market-centred attitude in recent years. But even they could see that excessively restrictive amendments to the Developer Rules were unsustainable in the long term. Occasionally, though, they still like to exercise a little muscle, as in the case of ScraperWiki. The recentness of the Scraperwiki incident serves as a reminder to tweet collector projects to remain mindful of possible restrictions on their actions.

    We needn’t throw our hands up in despair. It’s a shame that the freer, open-data approach is no longer the dominant mood at Twitter, but all is not bleak for developers wishing to find ways to gather and manage Twitter data. Certain restrictions (for example, on amounts of data gathered, and on ease of access) may have to be put in place, but ultimately there is still scope for ‘bona fide’ researchers to gain access to the incredibly rich resource that is the ever-changing Twitterstream.

    To read more entries in the DRI blog, please visit the Blog Page.



    New Director Appointed at the Digital Repository of Ireland


    25th May 2015

    New Director Appointed at the Digital Repository of Ireland

    The Royal Irish Academy is pleased to announce the appointment of Dr. Natalie Harrower as Acting Director of the Digital Repository of Ireland (DRI). Dr. Harrower is currently DRI’s Deputy Director, and was originally appointed in 2012 as Manager of Education and Outreach. She will take up the position on 1 July 2015, following the departure of founding Director, Dr. Sandra Collins, who has been appointed as Director of the National Library of Ireland.

    Announcing the appointment, Laura Mahoney, Executive Secretary of the RIA, said: “I am very pleased to welcome Dr. Harrower into her new role at the Digital Repository of Ireland, and look forward to the continued success of the DRI, which has been central to developing the infrastructure and community for digital preservation in Ireland and more broadly in Europe. Dr. Harrower has played a pivotal role at DRI, and is ideally positioned to ensure its future achievements.

    “We wish Dr. Sandra Collins success in her new role as Director of the National Library of Ireland, and thank her for the exceptional leadership and commitment she has displayed in building the DRI from its inception, and achieving international recognition in a short period of time. We look forward to continued collaborations with both the NLI and Dr. Collins.”



    Dr. Frances Narkiewicz, Programme Manager, DRI
    +353 (0)1 6090674

    Biography of Dr. Natalie Harrower

    At the DRI, Dr. Harrower has been responsible for initiating and delivering a broad education and training programme in digital preservation and related areas – including digital humanities, digital archiving, digital curation, and linked data – and for building DRI’s community profile and partnerships. She has been instrumental in securing grants for DRI from European funders (FP7, H2020), and Irish funders (SFI, Enterprise Ireland), and leads a number of leveraged projects for DRI, including the Social Repository of Ireland and the Royal Irish Academy’s contributions to the collaborative DAH PhD programme. Dr. Harrower is the Creative Lead of the multiple-award-winning project Inspiring Ireland, and has served on conference and academic workshop organising committees for the Research Data Alliance, Open Repositories, the European Data Forum, Discover Research Dublin, The Conference on Hypertext and Social Media, HICSS, and the ALLEA E-Humanities working group. Dr. Harrower established the international conference series DPASSH: Digital Preservation for the Arts, Social Sciences, and Humanities, and is chairing its inaugural conference in June 2015.

    Prior to her appointment at the DRI, Dr. Harrower was a theatre and film scholar, specialising in Irish identity, politics, and historiography, as seen through the critical lens of contemporary Irish theatre and film. Before moving to Ireland to take up an appointment at Trinity College Dublin on an IRCHSS-funded Irish theatre research project, she was an Assistant Professor of Drama at Queen’s University (Canada). Prior to her appointment at Queen’s, she was a lecturer in theatre, film, and Celtic Studies at the University of Toronto. Dr. Harrower received her PhD in Drama from the University of Toronto and her MA in Political Science from York University.

    About the DRI

    The Digital Repository of Ireland (DRI) is a national trusted digital repository for social and cultural content held by Irish institutions, funded by the HEA PRTLI Cycle 5. The Royal Irish Academy is the lead partner in the DRI consortium, which includes Maynooth University, Trinity College Dublin, Dublin Institute of Technology, National University of Ireland, Galway, and National College of Art and Design. As a national digital infrastructure, the DRI is working with a wide range of institutional stakeholders to link together and preserve Ireland’s rich and varied humanities and social science data through a broad portfolio of leveraged projects. The DRI also acts as a focal point for digital best practices and policy, promoting the benefits of digital preservation and open access to data, while respecting rights and data protection. DRI has built its repository on open-source platforms, and seeks to share best practices with the community to enable cost savings and improved standards of preservation and access.



    Social Media and the Newsroom: Hacks/Hackers Dublin meetup


    Hacks Hackers Dublin is holding its next meeting on Tuesday 2nd June at 6:30pm. The theme of the evening is "Social Media and the Newsroom", and features short talks by four professionals working at the intersection of social media and news. 

    Hacks Hackers is an international organisation that brings together 'Hacks' - journalists and others working in news with an interest in technology - with 'Hackers' - programmers and software engineers with an interest in news. The Dublin chapter is co-organised by DRI's Natalie Harrower, who also leads the DRI side of the collaborative Social Repository of Ireland project. 

    Speakers are: 

    Phil Hahn is the Social Media Producer for CTV News, based in Toronto. He has worked as a producer and writer for and as an Assignment Editor for National News. In the past year he's acquired front-end development skills, and is increasingly working (and struggling) with code and data journalism.   @philiphahn 

    Roja Bandari is a data scientist at Twitter, mostly working on machine learning models for prediction and classification projects. Her work also includes spam and abuse detection. Before Twitter her research was mainly focused on social network analysis for news and community detection. @RojaBandari 

    Donie O’Sullivan and Peader Grogan work at Dublin-based Storyful, the first newswire of the social media age. During the UK Election, they led Storyful’s data-driven coverage pulling together a popular blog series using Twitter, network analysis and good ol’ fashioned journalism to identify the best connected politicians. @donie @padrg

    Information about the event is available on the Dublin Hacks Hackers Meetup page

    Digital Humanities - Ireland's Opportunity report published.

    It's been a busy week at DRI in the realm of Digital Humanities. Early this week we announced the launch of Going Digital: Creating Change in the Humanities, at roundtable with EU representatives in Brussels.

    Today we are pleased to announce the publication of Digital Humanities - Ireland's Opportunity. This report is the result of an invited workshop at the Royal Irish Academy in October 2014, which brought together Ireland's leading scholars in the Digital Humanities. The workshop was convened by the Insight Centre for Data Analytics at Dublin City University and the Digital Repository of Ireland to coincide with a public lecture by Professor Jon Oberlander of Edinburgh University, who is one of the UK's leading Digital Humanities researchers. Both events were sponsored by the Irish Research Council.

    The report analyses the current role of Digital Humanities in Irish research, and discusses the wealth of opportunities for Ireland in this field. It makes several recommendations to funders and research institutions, namely that there is a need for sustained infrastructures and services beyond project duration, value recognition for the field of DH, and policy to support the fundamental interdisciplinary nature of the Digital Humanities.

    The report is available on our Publications page, or can be downloaded directly here.

    Going Digital: Creating Change in the Humanities Report launch in Brussels

    Going Digital: Creating Change in the Humanities was launched 7th May 2015 in Brussels by DRI's Dr. Sandra Collins and Dr. Natalie Harrower, to representatives of the EC and stakeholders of the European scientific community, at a roundtable event organised by Professor Günter Stock, President of ALLEA. 

    The report is the output of the ALLEA Working Group on E-Humanities, chaired by Dr Sandra Collins, Director of the Digital Repository of Ireland at the Royal Irish Academy. Edited by Dr. Natalie Harrower, the report was co-written by experts in the Digital Humanities from six Academies across Europe. 

    The report discusses the state of the art of Digital Humanities research and support structures in Europe, and makes key recommendations for the innovations required to foster the continued growth and excellence of the digital humanities in Europe, focusing on digital archiving, long-term preservation, digital research tools, sustained e-infrastructures and research networks. Structured around the data life-cycle, the report is aimed at a range of stakeholders, from humanities researchers to those working with data, and from university administrators to HSS and ICT funding bodies.

    Key recommendations include:

    Take a long-term view  Sustaining long-term archives of unique and important cultural artefacts is critical for Europe’s leadership in Digital Humanities. Adopting best practice for infrastructures is essential.

    Encourage openness  Open Access to data and infrastructures enables enhanced research, research integrity and cost-effectiveness. Open Data needs to be adequately funded.

    Support your people  Training and career progression are essential to prevent the loss of the critical skills needed to retain our competitiveness in Europe. Data management roles need suitable recognition.

    ALLEA, the federation of All European Academies, was founded in 1994 and currently brings together 58 Academies in more than 40 countries from the Council of Europe region. Member Academies operate as learned societies, think tanks and research performing organisations. They are self- governing communities of leaders of scholarly enquiry across all fields of the natural sciences, the social sciences and the humanities. ALLEA therefore provides access to an unparalleled human resource of intellectual excellence, experience and expertise. 

    Report Authors: Sandra Collins (Royal Irish Academy), Natalie Harrower (Royal Irish Academy), Dag Trygve Truslew Haug (Norwegian Academy of Science and Letters), Beat Immenhauser (Swiss Academies of Arts and Sciences, Gerhard Lauer (Union of German Academies of Sciences and Humanities), Tito Orlandi (The National Academy of the Lincei), Laurent Romary (DARIAH), Eveline Wandl-Vogt (Austrian Academy of Sciences).

    Launch of Qualified Dublin Core and the Digital Repository of Ireland

    We are pleased to announce that Qualified Dublin Core and the Digital Repository of Ireland - a guide to preparing Qualified Dublin Core metadata for DRI ingestion - has been published today.

    In 2012 the Digital Repository of Ireland published Digital Archiving in Ireland, a report which collated findings on digital archiving practice in Irish organisations. This report included an assessment of the metadata schema which are currently in use in Ireland across libraries, archives, museums and other repositories.

    DRI encourages the use of good practices in digital archiving and digital preservation, and we recommend that cataloguers use the metadata schema which is most appropriate for their domain. In order to support the publication of multiple metadata schema in the Repository, and to facilitate cross-searching of diverse collections, DRI is developing a series of metadata guidelines for cataloguers.

    Our guidelines are not intended to modify or replace standard schema, but to aid cataloguers in selecting which metadata elements to include, and to advise on the application of standardised formats and vocabularies.

    These guidelines are the second in our series on metadata preparation for DRI. The first guidelines in our series, published in January 2015, relate to (simple) Dublin Core. Upcoming in our series are guidelines on EAD, MODS and MARC.

    The Guidelines were launched at today's meeting of DRI's Stakeholder Advisory Group, at the Royal Irish Academy headquarters of DRI in Dublin.

    For more information, see our Publications page.

    DRI Blog: Imaging of the Clarke Studios Windows In Situ

    Author: Joanne Carroll

    Since December 2013, the Digital Resources and Imaging Services of Trinity College have been digitising the archive of the Harry Clarke Stained Glass Studios, held in TCD's Manuscript and Archive Research Library. As a demonstrator project for the Digital Repository of Ireland, we aim to digitise and catalogue the archive of this prolific stained glass studio spanning 80 years. The digital collection will include a large selection of designs and photographs, business records, letters, and other materials relating to the design and commission of stained glass windows in Ireland and around the world. Another aspect of the project is the imaging of Clarke Studio stained glass windows in situ. We have imaged the windows in Belvedere College, where Harry Clarke went to school and a 5-minute walk from the original Clarke Studios on North Frederick Street and windows in St. Michan’s Church, John’s Lane Church and the Mansion House.

    It was a huge pleasure to be able to image these windows and meet the people who work, volunteer, and worship in the buildings that house these fine pieces of 20th Century religious art. People we spoke to held an obvious interest in the windows and had a desire to find out more about the designs; the online digital collection is a great resource for people to discover the origins of the windows they have looked at in their parish church possibly their whole lives. The photographing of the windows not only encourages research from interested parties but also furthers our understanding of the material; by going into the field we are able to add further information about the archive and improve the records we hold in the repository. 


    From left to right: Belvedere College Chapel (fig.1), MS11182-218 (fig.2). Copyright of The Board of Trinity College Dublin.

    Our metadata cataloguer, Marta Bustillo was able to recognize the design (MS11182-218) that the window may have come from, a design that had not been originally identified in the archive.


    From left to right: MS11182-537 (fig.3),  Belvedere College Chapel (fig.4)Copyright of The Board of Trinity College Dublin.

    Window above the altar in Belvedere College Chapel; you can see clearly the navy sash connecting the three panes and small details of faces in fig. 3; these are not explicitly visible in the window.

    Although the photographing of the windows provides a great resource and potential for research, producing the images is not without its problems. Stained glass can be quite difficult to photograph due to the high levels of contrast between the window, which is backlit, and the frame/environment of the building, which can be dark. Because of this, it is usually necessary to have long exposure times, which can result in some camera shake and distortion in the final image. This was remedied by using a tripod, the timed shutter release button, and the ‘mirror-up’ button to reduce the risk of camera shake and provide a crisper image. Another issue with backlighting of windows is the lack of consistency of the light source from the windows e.g. buildings outside blocking light through a particular window or section of a window. One solution was to use the ‘bracketing’ function of the digital camera; a technique of taking several shots using different exposure levels. This would allow us in postproduction, using HDR software to blend the images and get a balanced exposure in the final image, as demonstrated in the images below from a window in the Mansion House:

    From left to right: Fig.5, Fig.6, Fig.7, Fig.8 Copyright of The Board of Trinity College Dublin.

    Fig. 9: Combined images (fig.5-8) using HDR software. Copyright of The Board of Trinity College Dublin.

    The position of the windows is also an issue, not only because of lighting but also because of general access to the window and the perspective of the final image; particularly the keystone effect (when the bottom of the stained glass window looks wider than the top making it look out of proportion). A tilt-shift lens was used to counteract this. Also, when possible a ladder, table, or even scaffolding was used to gain head-on access to windows that are higher up. This is very effective to get direct shots of a window, although lights and other church and building fixtures may get in the way of a head-on photograph. These issues are the reason why stained glass can be challenging to photograph, however, the final images are worth the extra effort.

    Fig.10: Scaffolding used to image in John's Lane Church

    It is great to have photographs of these stained glass windows, and also have access to the digital archive to see the designs and business records which led to their creation. But there is something missing when stained glass windows are imaged: the ‘feeling’, the aura of the original is lacking. For example the scale of the object is hard to grasp when looking at a digital image; also the feeling you get when you see the light shining through the stained glass window or the mood or atmosphere of the building are hard to portray in a photograph. As Walter Benjamin wrote in 1936 “Even a most perfect reproduction of a work of art is lacking in one element: its presence in time and space, its unique existence at the place where it happens to be.” (‘Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction’ -Walter Benjamin) So if you can, visit these windows in their unique existence and use the digitised collection to explore them and gain a further understanding of the Harry Clarke Studio Archive and the beautiful windows the Studio created. 

    To read more entries in the DRI blog, please visit the Blog Page.


    European Data Forum 2015 CFP (Nov 16-17, Luxembourg)


    EDF2015: Exploiting Data Integration

    The Call for Papers for EDF2015 has been released. The 2015 European Data Forum takes place 16-17 November 2015 in Luxembourg, at the Centre de Conférences Kirchberg

    Deadline for Submissions: 15 May 2015

    The European Data Forum (EDF) is an annual meeting place for industry, research, policy makers, and community initiatives to discuss the challenges and opportunities of the Global and European data economy. Spurred by recent developments such as Big Data and Data-driven Business, data has become the fourth production factor (next to personnel, capital, and natural resources), which offers completely new opportunities and at the same time it confronts us with novel challenges. The forum balances technical, business-oriented and socio-economic, perspectives and approaches in order to develop a vibrant, interdisciplinary stakeholder community. Special focus will be devoted to innovation and business opportunities opened by data technologies and their exploitation, in the perspective of a digital single market in Europe.

    Download the CFP

    For more information, see: 


    Údar: Dr. Rósmáire Ní Cholla

    Seolfar tionscadal taispeántach de chuid OÉ Gaillimh do Thaisclann Dhigiteach na hÉireann don phobal ag Comhdháil DPASSH 2015. Sraith bailiúchán atá curtha in eagar atá sa tionscadal, ar théama na hOidhreachta Cultúrtha. Tiomsaíodh na bailiúcháin as cartlanna fuaime, téacs agus íomhánna agus cé gur ábhar Gaeilge an t-ábhar féin, ullmhaíodh na meiteashonraí agus an t-ábhar comhthéacsúil trí Ghaeilge agus trí Bhéarla sa chaoi is go mbeidh na húsáideoirí abalta brabhsáíl agus cuardach a dhéanamh trí cheachtar den dá theanga

    Díreoidh an blag áirithe seo ar bhailiúchán amháin sa tionscadal: Bailiúchán Sheáin Mhic Ghiollarnáth. Tá clú ar Sheán Mac Giollarnáth mar bhéaloideasóir agus mar scríbhneoir. Dátaí idir 1929-1940 atá ar na bunlámhscríbhinní agus cuireadh le chéile iad i gConamara nuair a bhí Mac Giollarnáth ina bhreitheamh ar an gcúirt dúiche ansin sna blianta 1925-1950. Tras-scríobhadh na lámhscríbhinní i 2003-04. Tugtar 47 lámhscríbhinn agus tras-scríbhinn digitithe i mBailiúchán Sheáin Mhic Ghiollarnáth, mar aon le craoltaí RTÉ Raidió na Gaeltachta, meascra ábhar ilghnéitheach ó na lámhscríbhinní agus faisnéis chúlra faoina shaol agus a shaothar. Tá an-réimse ábhar sna lámhscríbhinní, an dúlra agus an fiadhúlra agus aistriúcháin ón mBéarla agus ón nGearmáinis san áireamh. Ní nach ionadh áfach, agus an cúlra a bhí aige, ábhar béaloidis atá i bhformhór acu (40 lss). Dá bhrí sin díreofar anseo ar na lámhscríbhinní béaloidis agus ar an ábhar ilghnéitheach. 


    Seán Mac Giollarnáth, 1880-1970 (All Rights Reserved)

    Thug a chuid oibre mar bhreitheamh sa chúirt dúiche an deis dó aithne a chur ar na scéalaithe agus na seanchaithe ba mhó le rá i gConamara ag an am. Thairis sin ó bhí sé gníomhach sa Choimisiún Béaloideasa Éireann (1935-1971), agus roimhe sin san Institiúid Bhéaloideas Éireann, (1930-1935) agus sa Chumann le Béaloideas Éireann (1927-1930), thuig sé go raibh práinn leis an eolas a bhí acu a bhailiú. 

    Coimisiún Béaloideasa Éireann (All Rights Reserved)

    Tá roinnt den ábhar sna lámhscríbhinní i bhfoirm nótaí agus dréachtaí d’ailt a d’fhoilsigh sé i mBéaloideas agus do théacsanna ar nós Peadar Chois Fhairrge (1934), Loinnir Mac Leabhair agus Sgéalta Gaisgidh Eile (1936) agus Annála Beaga ó Iorrus Aithneach (1941). Craoladh Annála Beaga ar RTÉ Raidió na Gaeltachta i 1986-87. Tá na craoltaí seo ar fáil mar chuid de Bailiúchán Sheáin Mhic Ghiollarnáth.

    Ar nós na mbailitheoirí béaloidis eile, lean Mac Giollarnáth na treoirlínte a leag Ó Súilleabháin síos i Láimh-leabhar Béaloideasa (1937) agus Handbook of Irish Folklore (1942). Tá achoimrí na dtreoirlínte seo, nó dréachtaí b’fhéidir, i mBéarla agus i nGaeilge san ábhar ilghnéitheach. Iarradh ar na bailitheoirí dátaí, áiteanna agus ainmneacha na scéalaithe a lua chomh maith le hábhar bainteach ar bith eile (féach Comhairle don Bhailightheoir thíos). Obair cheannródaíoch a bhí sna treoirlínte seo ó thaobh feabhas na meiteashonraíochta de, a fhágann lámhscríbhinní mar seo ina n-acmhainní luachmhara do thaighdeoirí suas go dtí an lá atá inniu ann. Go deimhin bhain MoTIF, leas as an liosta cuimsitheach d’eochairfhocail i lámhleabhar an tSúilleabhánaigh ar na mallaibh agus iad i mbun oibre ar an teasáras píolótach do bhéaloideas na hÉireann.


    Bailiúchán Sheáin Mhic Ghiollarnáth MS007. Comhairle don Bhailightheoir

    Tá i bhfad níos mó faisnéise sna nótaí imeallacha seo ná meiteashonraí fuarchúiseacha amháin, ar ndóigh. Breacann Mac Giollarnáth síos nótaí pearsanta freisin a thugann spléachadh dúinn ar an an gcairdeas a bhí aige le daoine eile, agus leis an scéalaí Micilín Mac Donnchadha ach go háirithe. Léiriú maith é an nóta ag deireadh LS012 thíos. 



    "28 mbilleog sgríobhta agam anocht ó Mhicilín tar éis dom a bheith ag cúirt i Leitir Fraig. Tá an ghaoth anoir a bhí againn le deich lá imthighthe agus gaoth chineálta aniar ndeas againn. Tá sé anois tar éis meadhon oidhche agus mé tuirseach ach tá fonn cainnte ar Mhicilín fós. Bhí sé ag druimleoid arsgéal, adéir sé, agus é dhá innseacht. Bhí cuid mhór den sgéal innsighthe nuair a dhúisigh sé agus ní raibh cuimhne aige ar an sgéal. Caithfidh mé anois an cár a thabhairt amach agus Micilín a fhágáil thoir ag ceann an bhóithrín i Roisín na mBan-Aoidheach. Siubhlaidh sé abhaile uaidh sin, suas an bóithrín agus treasna na ngarranta go dtí n-a theaichín I Roisín n a mBan-Aoidheach, ar thaobh Loch Mac Caola." 

    Idir 12 agus a haon a.m. 14.12.1932

    Bailiúchán Sheáin Mhic Ghiollarnáth. MS012 (All Rights Reserved)


    Bhailigh Mac Giollarnáth cuid mhór ábhair ó Mhicilín agus luaitear a ainm go rialta sna lámhscríbhinní. Is cosúil nach raibh coinne de dhíth agus bhí sé de nós ag Micilín bualadh isteach i dteach na cúirte nuair a bhíodh fonn cainte air. Is léir go bhfuil ardmheas ag Mac Giollarnáth air. Tá ainm Mhicilín ag barr Chlár an Lucht Innseachta ag tús Annála Beaga (1941). 

    Níl anseo ar ndóigh ach forbhreathnú gasta fíorshuibiachtúil ar a bhfuil ar fáil i mBailiúchán Sheáin Mhic Ghiollarnáth. Pointí tosaithe iad an téacs, an fhuaim agus na híomhánna sa bhailiúchán do dhaoine a bhfuil spéis acu sa bhéaloideas nó sa Ghaeilge, agus go deimhin cuirfear ceisteanna iontu a spreagfaidh tuilleadh fiosruithe.



    Almqvist, B. (1977-1979). The Irish Folklore Commission - Folklore agus Legacy. Béaloideas, 45-47, 6-26.

    Breathnach, D., & Ní Mhurchú, M. (2014). Mac Giollarnáth, Seán (1880-1970).

    Briody, M. (2007). The Irish Folklore Commission 1935-1970. Helsinki.

    Mac Giollarnáth, S. (1934). Peadar Chois Fhairrge. Baile Átha Cliath: Oifig an tSoláthair.

    Mac Giollarnáth, S. (1936). Loinnir Mac Leabhair agus Sgéalta Gaisgidh Eile. Baile Átha Cliath: Oifig Díolta Foilseacháin Rialtais.

    Mac Giollarnáth, S. (1941). Annála Beaga ó Iorrus Aithneach. Baile Átha Cliath: Oifig an tSoláthair.

    Morley, V. (2009). Mac Giollarnáth (Mac Giolla An Átha; Forde), Seán. Dictionary of Irish Biography. (J. McGuire, & J. Quinn, Eds.) Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press. Retrieved from James McGuire, James Quinn (ed.), Dictionary of Irish Biography.:;jsessionid=A284017323510F860E182...

    Ó Cearbhaill, D. (2012). Seanchas Fola: Folklore from East Galway. Seán Mac Giollarnáth (1880-1970). (D. Ó Cearbhaill, Ed.) Journal of the Galway Archaeological agus Historical Society, 64, 106-127.

    Ó Súilleabháin, S. (1937). Láimh-leabhar Béaloideasa. Baile Átha Cliath: Comhlucht Oideachais na hÉireann ar son an Chumainn le Béaloideas Éireann.

    Ó Súilleabháin, S. (1942). A Handbook of Irish Folklore. Dublin: Educational Company of Ireland for the Folklore of Ireland Society.

    Uí Ógáin, R. (2013). Cnuasach Bhéaloideas Éireann: The National Folklore Collection, University College, Dublin. Oral Tradition, 28 (2), 317-324.



    Author: Dr. Rosemary Coll

    The NUI Galway demonstrator project for DRI launches to the public at DPASSH 2015. The project draws on Irish language audio, text and image archives to create a number of curated collections based around the theme of Cultural Heritage. While the content is in Irish, metadata and contextual material have been prepared in both Irish and English so that users can browse and search through either language.

    This blog showcases one of our collections Bailiúchán Sheáin Mhic Ghiollarnáth, The Seán Mac Giollarnáth Collection. Seán Mac Giollarnáth was a renowned folklorist and writer. The original manuscripts are dated 1929-1940 and were compiled in Conamara where Mac Giollarnáth served as circuit court judge 1925-1950. They were transcribed in 2003-04. Bailiúchán Sheáin Mhic Ghiollarnáth presents 47 digitised manuscripts and transcripts, together with a number of Raidió na Gaeltachta broadcasts, collection ephemera and background material about his life and work. The manuscripts contain material on a range of themes including nature and wildlife and a number of translations from English and German. As one might imagine given his background, the majority (41 mss) contain folklore. Consequently the focus here is on the folklore manuscripts and ephemera.  

    Seán Mac Giollarnáth, 1880-1970 (All rights reserved) 

    His work as district court judge then, put him in contact with some of the foremost storytellers in Conamara at the time and his work with the Irish Folklore Commission (1935-1971) and its predecessors The Irish Folklore Institute (1930-1935) and The Folklore of Ireland Society (1927-1930) highlighted the urgency of capturing their tales. The importance of this work is outlined in a memorandum to collectors c.1933 (see extract below). 


    Bailiúchán Sheáin Mhic Ghiollarnáth MS009. Extract from Memorandum to Collectors (All Rights Reserved)

    Mac Giollarnáth published some of the material in the manuscripts in Béaloideas and in texts such as Peadar Chois Fhairrge (1934), Loinnir Mac Leabhair agus Sgéalta Gaisgidh Eile (1936) and Annála Beaga ó Iorrus Aithneach (1941). Annála Beaga was broadcast on Raidió na Gaeltachta in 1986-87. These broadcasts form part of Bailiúchán Sheáin Mhic Ghiollarnáth.

    In common with all other folklore collectors, Mac Giollarnáth followed the guidelines which Ó Súilleabháin set out in Láimh-leabhar Béaloideasa (1937) and Handbook of Irish Folklore (1942). Summary versions or perhaps drafts of these guidelines in Irish and English form part of the collection ephemera. Collectors were required to record dates, times, places and names of contributors together with any other relevant contextual material (see extract below). 

    Bailiúchán Sheáin Mhic Ghiollarnáth MS009. Extract from General Instructions (All Rights Reserved)

    These guidelines produced a quality of metadata which has stood the test of time and continues to make manuscripts such as these an invaluable resource for researchers today. Ó Súilleabháin’s handbook also included a comprehensive list of subject keywords which has recently been used in MoTIF, the pilot thesaurus on Irish folklore.

    Of course notes and marginalia record more than just times and places. Personal notes provide an insight into friendships and relationships, including that between Mac Giollarnáth and the storyteller Micilín Mac Donnchadha. This is exemplified in a note at the end of MS012 translated below. 


    "I have written 28 pages from Micilín tonight after the court sitting in Leitir Fraig. The east wind which we have had for the past ten days has gone and we have a mild south westerly. It is now past midnight and I am tired but Micil still feels like talking. He was nodding off, he says as he was telling a story. He had told a good part of the story when he woke up and he could not remember the story. I must take out the car now and leave Micilín back to the top of the road in Roisín na mBan Aoidheach. He will walk home from there up the road and across the fields to his cottage in Roisín na mBan Aoidheach on the shore of Loch Mac Caola.

    Between 12 and one a.m. 14.12.1932"

    Bailiúchán Sheáin Mhic Ghiollarnáth. MS012

    Micilín is a frequent contributor who tends to drop into the courthouse nuair a bhíonn fonn cainte air ‘when he feels like talking’ and Mac Giollarnáth clearly holds him in high regard. He includes Micilín’s name at the top of the list of contributors to Annála Beaga (1941). 

    This is of course a highly subjective and narrowly focussed overview the Bailiúchán Sheáin Mhic Ghiollarnáth. Browsing the text, audio and images in the collection as a whole provides a stepping-off point for anyone with an interest in folklore and language and indeed poses questions which require further investigation. 

    To read more entries in the DRI blog, please visit the Blog Page.



    Almqvist, B. (1977-1979). The Irish Folklore Commission - Folklore and Legacy. Béaloideas, 45-47, 6-26.

    Breathnach, D., & Ní Mhurchú, M. (2014). Mac Giollarnáth, Seán (1880-1970).

    Briody, M. (2007). The Irish Folklore Commission 1935-1970. Helsinki.

    Mac Giollarnáth, S. (1934). Peadar Chois Fhairrge. Baile Étha Cliath: Oifig an tSoláthair.

    Mac Giollarnáth, S. (1936). Loinnir Mac Leabhair agus Sgéalta Gaisgidh Eile. Baile Átha Cliath: Oifig Díolta Foilseacháin Rialtais.

    Mac Giollarnáth, S. (1941). Annála Beaga ó Iorrus Aithneach. Baile Átha Cliath: Oifig an tSoláthair.

    Morley, V. (2009). Mac Giollarnáth (Mac Giolla An Átha; Forde), Seán. Dictionary of Irish Biography. (J. McGuire, & J. Quinn, Eds.) Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press. Retrieved from James McGuire, James Quinn (ed.), Dictionary of Irish Biography.:;jsessionid=A284017323510F860E182...

    Ó Cearbhaill, D. (2012). Seanchas Fola: Folklore from East Galway. Seán Mac Giollarnáth (1880-1970). (D. Ó Cearbhaill, Ed.) Journal of the Galway Archaeological and Historical Society, 64, 106-127.

    Ó Súilleabháin, S. (1937). Láimh-leabhar Béaloideasa. Baile Átha Cliath: Comhlucht Oideachais na hÉireann ar son an Chumainn le Béaloideas Éireann.

    Ó Súilleabháin, S. (1942). A Handbook of Irish Folklore. Dublin: Educational Company of Ireland for the Folklore of Ireland Society.

    Uí Ógáin, R. (2013). Cnuasach Bhéaloideas Éireann: The National Folklore Collection, University College, Dublin. Oral Tradition, 28 (2), 317-324.

    Welcome to the DRI Blog

    If you're familiar with our work, then you've seen our Publications page, which includes formal reports and guidelines, as well as brief Factsheets and links to presentations on our Slideshare account. DRI are now launching a blog to complement our Publications, and also provides a venue for different kinds of considerations. 

    Contributions for our blog will come from different members of DRI and will include discussions on our demonstator projects, DRI work in progress and other interesting, "cool", stuff! 

    To read more entries in the DRI blog, please visit the Blog Page.


    Twitter campaign reveals wealth of digital preservation initiatives and successes

    Digital Preservation has been a hot news topic over the last couple of weeks, following a BBC interview and Guardian article, where Google VP Vint Cerf warned that we could be entering a 'digital dark age', where all the materials we've created digitally - photos, emails, documents - could be lost to future generations. See Google's Vint Cerf warns of 'digital Dark Age' (BBC, 13 Feb 2015) and Google Boss warns of 'forgotten century' with emails and photos at risk (Guardian, 13 Feb 2015).

    While Cerf's statements underline the importance of digital preservation, there was a strong response from the broader digital preservation community: this isn't news; we're hard at work preserving our digital creations, and have been doing so for a long while.

    To demonstrate this activity, the Digital Preservation Coalition (of which DRI is a member) launched a one-day Twitter campaign on February 23, 2015, using the hashtag #nodigitaldarkage, encouraging institutions involved in digital preservation to share pictures of their workplaces. The National Archives UK, The British Library, DRI, The UK Data Archive, and many others sent tweets and images.

    The University of London Computer Centre followed up the enthusiam by curating a Storify record of the campaign: Digital Dark Age? What Digital Dark Age?

    Do you have something to add about digital preservation actitivities? Join the Twitter conversation.

    Metadata Quality Control guide released

    We are pleased to announce the publication of our guide to Metadata Quality Control, authored by the DRI's Kate McCarthy

    As a national digital repository, the DRI is interested in all aspects of metadata, including quality control. This guide is for managers of libraries and archives, or those who might be indirectly responsible for library and archival facilities within a larger organisation. The guide describes what metadata is, and more importantly, what 'poor' metadata is and how it can have long-term effects on the provision of good services. The document outlines the reasons why poor metadata can occur (while stressing that there is no such thing as a perfect catalogue in any library or archive!).

    In this guide, we set out a five-point strategy to deal with the issue of metadata quality control, including an encouragement to align with international best practice, create clear cataloguing guidelines, offer extra training for staff, conduct regular usability tests of the database and regular metadata audits. In order to carry out metadata audits, the guidelines recommend Open Refine, a free open-source data wrangling tool. Open Refine has been used in many Linked Data projects for cultural and heritage data, but is also an excellent facility for exploring samples of an organisation’s metadata, and allowing the easy identification and recording of misspellings and other inconsistencies in catalogue records.   

    Metadata Quality Control is available for free download on the Publications page, where you will also find the recently released guidelines on preparing Dublin Core metadata for DRI ingest.

    DRI staff wins blogging award!

    Jenny O'Neill, Data Curator at DRI@TCD, recently won the CILIP Blogger Challenge. Her blog, which discusses the difference between imaging and digitisation and the need for long term digital preservation, was chosen by a judging panel out of over 70 submissions. 

    You can read the post, titled "Is digitisation the answer or is digital preservation the question?", on the Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals website.

    Congratulations to Jenny! 

    DRI eGovernment Awards in the press

    Thank you to everyone who has passed on congratulations about the eGovernment award wins last week. The office is all abuzz! We at DRI and all the partners in Inspiring Ireland are delighted - it was truly a group effort.

    If you would like to read more, here are a few articles that made the press:

    "I would like to congratulate Dr Sandra Collins and her team at the Digital Repository of Ireland for winning this prestigious award.

    The Inspiring Ireland project showcases Ireland’s culture to a global audience. This promises to be one of the most important online cultural initiatives taken to date in Ireland.

    As Minister for the Diaspora I want to recognise the potential of the Inspiring Ireland project for making Irish culture, heritage and history accessible to our diaspora. The core principles of the project, to preserve, discover, share, remind us of the importance of not only preserving our national collection but of also making it accessible to Irish people around the world."

    Minister Deenihan congratulates Digital Repository of Ireland on their eGovernment Awards success (Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade)


    “We are a new organisation and we didn’t think we had a chance,” Collins tells “We were absolutely speechless, overwhelmed, thrilled.”

    Digital Repository of Ireland wins at Ireland E-Government Awards (Silicon Republic)


    Hurdles remain in the race to electronic government (Irish Times)


    Press Releases


    DRI and Fáilte Ireland Sweep the Board at eGovernment Awards (eircom)


    Insight partner the Digital Repository of Ireland Overall Winner at Ireland’s E-Government Awards (Insight Centre for Data Analytics)


    Inspiring Ireland Wins Big (dara creative)


    DRI, Failte Ireland big winners at eGovernment Awards (Tech Central)


    Annertech-built Inspiring Ireland "sweeps" Irish eGovernment Awards 2015 (Annertech)


    The Awards are also discussed on Twitter at #irelandegov, #egovernmentawards and @irelandegov.


    DRI sweeps the eGovernment Awards!

    Digital Repository of Ireland Overall Winner at Ireland’s eGovernment Awards

    From L-R: Dr. Sandra Collins; An Taoiseach Enda Kenny, TD; Dr. Natalie Harrower

    DRI sweeps the board with its ‘Inspiring Ireland’ project, nabbing three awards: Promoting Ireland Overseas’, ‘Open Source’, and ‘Overall Winner’


    The Digital Repository of Ireland won three Ireland eGovernment awards yesterday for Inspiring Ireland, the ambitious project it spearheaded in collaboration with eight of Ireland’s National Cultural Institutions, and the Department of Arts, Heritage, and the Gaeltacht.

    DRI won the event’s Overall Award, which includes the finalists from all projects and organisations shortlisted for an award in 2014. The awards were presented on January 29th by An Taoiseach Enda Kenny during a gala event at Dublin Castle. Set up in 2001 to recognise excellence and innovation by public sector bodies who are pioneering change in the delivery of eGovernment services in Ireland, the awards are sponsored by eircom Business Solutions and jointly run by the Public Sector Times and digital marketing company Elucidate.

    “Inspiring Ireland from the Digital Repository of Ireland is a really innovative and really important solution to a problem: we have a wealth of cultural heritage in Ireland. This project was about making that information – that richness of cultural heritage – available to the country and to Irish citizen abroad. But not only Irish citizens – equally people who have an interest in Ireland” commented awards judge Paddy Hopkins (former Company Secretary at Enterprise Ireland).


    Ireland eGovernment Awards 2014 - Overall Winner video intro from Digital Repository of Ireland on Vimeo.



    Accepting the Award, the DRI’s Director and Inspiring Ireland Project Lead Dr. Sandra Collins said: “Winning the eGovernment Awards mean so much to us, this recognition shows the value of our work and the passion and commitment of our amazing team in the Digital Repository of Ireland. Inspiring Ireland is a truly collaborative endeavor, and it shows the inspirational content in our Cultural Institutions, and their expertise and professionalism. We're sincerely grateful for the eGovernment Awards, and for the support of our funders and our partners.”

    In addition to scooping the award for Overall Winner, Inspiring Ireland also won awards in two specific categories, including ‘Promoting Ireland Overseas,’ with strong competition from Fáilte Ireland. Praising the project, judge Hopkins said “Inspiring Ireland is a massive project; in its widest context it looks at the arts, it looks at culture, it looks at a whole range of activities and issues that can be preserved – hopefully in perpetuity for Ireland – in a secure and sustainable manner.”


    Ireland eGovernment Awards 2014 - Promoting Ireland Overseas video intro from Digital Repository of Ireland on Vimeo.



    The third win was in the category for ‘Open Source’, which is close to the heart of DRI’s overall mandate, which emphasises openness at every step, from software and technology choices, to open access, to the concept of opening up collections that are otherwise difficult to access. Judge Declan Tuite (School of Communications, DCU) remarked “The Inspiring Ireland project is substantial – it’s the front end of a larger digital repository. They had to go and create some new processes…they weren’t  thinking small.”


    Ireland eGovernment Awards 2014 - Open Source Award video intro from Digital Repository of Ireland on Vimeo.


    “We are absolutely delighted that collaborative, interdisciplinary efforts behind Inspiring Ireland were recognised by the judges, and that our project was able to stand beside such esteemed organisations in Ireland. Inspiring Ireland originated from a passion to preserve and share Ireland’s cultural heritage, but it was delivered by blood, sweat and tears! The project encapsulates important aspects of Ireland’s past, and therefore is valuable to the future” said Dr. Natalie Harrower, Creative Lead on Inspiring Ireland. “We hope that these awards will enable us to create new exhibitions and new partnerships for the project.”

    Minister for the Diaspora, Jimmy Deenihan, TD, stated “I would like to congratulate Sandra Collins and her team for winning this prestigious award. I would also like to recognise the initial input of Colleen Dube (Executive Director of the Fulbright Commission), Niall Ó Donnchú, Assistant Secretary, and Chris Flynn, Principal Officer, in the Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, and the Digital Repository of Ireland for helping me get this exciting project off the ground as Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht in 2013. I was delighted to launch the project in Stanford University in March 2014 where I announced a special advisory board chaired by John Hartnett (President & Founder ITLG). This promises to be one of the most important online cultural initiatives taken to date in Ireland.”

    Inspiring Ireland is a centralised, curated online portal to Ireland’s cultural heritage; it’s an ambitious project to bring Ireland’s cultural treasures – paintings, letters, sculpture, manuscripts, historical objects, music, photography – both digital and digitised – to a national and international audience. The first of its kind in Ireland, the website offers Ireland’s exceptional cultural heritage from a broad range of galleries, libraries, archives and museums to showcase Irish digital-cultural innovation globally. Inspiring Ireland is also the pilot for a systematic programme in preservation, access and discovery for digital objects in Ireland’s Cultural Institutions. The project is the result of an intense and productive collaboration between ten bodies: Digital Repository of Ireland, Department of Arts, Heritage, and the Gaeltacht, Abbey Theatre, Chester Beatty Library, Crawford Art Gallery Cork, Irish Museum of Modern Art, National Archives of Ireland, National Gallery of Ireland, National Library of Ireland, National Museum of Ireland.

    See the project here:

    The Digital Repository of Ireland (DRI) is a national trusted digital repository that preserves and provides online access to Ireland’s social and cultural heritage. A consortium of six partners  -- The Royal Irish Academy, TCD, NUIM, NUIG, DIT and NCAD – the team includes software engineers, digital archivists and librarians, legal, policy and requirements specialists, social scientists and humanities scholars. Funded by the Irish Government via the Programme for Research in Third Level Institutions in 2011, the DRI has won competitive funding for a number of additional research projects in the ICT, education and culture sectors, and actively collaborates with a number of partners, including RTÉ and the SFI-funded Insight Centre for Data Analytics, among others.

    Visit DRI here:

    A full list of Ireland eGovernment Award winners is available here:

    - - - - 

    More information:

    Dr. Sandra Collins   087 753 5922

    Dr. Natalie Harrower 087 675 5658

    Inspiring Ireland:

    Digital Repository of Ireland:



    Dublin Core and the DRI Metadata Guidelines Published

    We are pleased to announce that Dublin Core and the Digital Repository of Ireland - a guide to preparing Dublin Core metadata for DRI ingestion - has been published today. 

    In 2012 the Digital Repository of Ireland published Digital Archiving in Ireland, a report which collated findings on digital archiving practice in Irish organisations. This report included an assessment of the metadata schema which are currently in use in Ireland across libraries, archives, museums and other repositories.

    DRI encourages the use of good practices in digital archiving and digital preservation, and we recommend that cataloguers use the metadata schema which is most appropriate for their domain. In order to support the publication of multiple metadata schema in the Repository, and to facilitate cross-searching of diverse collections, DRI is developing a series of metadata guidelines for cataloguers.

    The DRI guidelines are not intended to modify or replace standard schema, but to aid cataloguers in selecting which metadata elements to include, and to advise on the application of standardised formats and vocabularies.

    The first guidelines in our series relate to Dublin Core. These will be followed by Qualified Dublin Core, EAD, MODS and MARC.

    The Guidelines were launched at today's meeting of DRI's International Advisory Group, at the Royal Irish Academy headquarters of DRI in Dublin.


    DRI and Inspiring Ireland @ E-Government Awards

    We are delighted to announce that DRI has been short-listed for a 2014 Ireland eGovernment Award, and that our projectInspiring Ireland has been short-listed for not one, but two 2014 Ireland eGovernment Awards!

    The Ireland eGovernment Awards are the recognised benchmark for excellence in Ireland eGovernment services and standards, and are now in their 13th year. The Awards raise awareness and recognise the innovators, developers, forward thinkers and experts who are pioneering the changes happening in how the Irish Government delivers services to its citizens.

    Following our nomination and submitted application, the judging has now finished and the shortlisted applicants are announced here:

    DRI is shortlisted for the Marketing Ireland award, where our competitors are An Post and Failte Ireland.

    Inspiring Ireland is shortlisted for two of the awards: Promoting Ireland Overseas (competing with Failte Ireland) and Open Source Technologies (competing with the Office of Public Works).

    The awards will be presented in Dublin Castle on 29th January 2015, by An Taoiseach, Enda Kenny. 




    DPASSH 2015 Abstract Deadline extended


    The deadline for abstract submissions to DPASSH 2015 has been extended by one week, to Feb 2, 2015. Please consider submitting a proposal for a long paper, short paper, or poster. 

    All details on the conference website at

    New DRI Factsheet: About DRI Membership

    We have just released our fifth Factsheet: About DRI Membership. You can download this Factsheet, along with our various Reports, Guidelines and Policies on the Publications page. See the Factsheet Section.

    Stay tuned for more new publications next week!


    First Irish Survey on Journalists' use of Social Media launched!

    Press Release

    7th January 2015

    For Immediate Release


    First national survey on Irish Journalists’ use of social media released. Results reveal the ways in which social media shapes journalism

    In a world where the first person to see and write about a breaking news event is a random individual with a smart phone, instead of a seasoned reporter in the field, what role does social media play in contemporary journalism? How does the availability and use of social media platforms shape the news production lifecycle? These and many more questions are being addressed for the first time in the Irish context by a new survey launched today.

    After collecting and analysing data from hundreds of professional journalists working in Ireland, the Digital Humanities and Journalism group of the Insight Centre at the National University of Ireland, Galway has launched a comprehensive report: Social Journalism Survey: First National Survey on Irish Journalists’ Use of Social Media (2014).

    Dr. Natalie Harrower, the Digital Repository of Ireland’s Manager of Education and Outreach, and co-author of the report, said: “This survey is very timely, because social media has become a significant factor in the writing of contemporary history – it is shaping the way that contemporary society is documented, and therefore it demands our attention as a candidate for long-term preservation. DRI was keen to contribute to this project because social media it is being widely adopted by professional journalists as a source for news leads, but it is also a rich source of research data for scholars. Like a lot of born-digital material, however, it is ephemeral if not preserved properly. We are at risk of losing it, and in turn, losing an important and diverse part of our social record”.

    DRI is also collaborating with the Digital Humanities and Journalism Group at Insight @ NUI Galway on the ‘Social Repository of Ireland’ feasibility study, which is developing tools to preserve event-based social media for Ireland, as well as writing guidelines around best practices in social media archiving and preservation. DRI’s Director, Dr. Sandra Collins, stated “we are very pleased to have contributed to this survey, as it complements the research we are conducting on best practices for social media preservation through the Social Repository of Ireland project. It also helps focus a light on the importance of preservation planning for born-digital material, so that all varieties of Ireland’s social and cultural record can be preserved for posterity. We believe the survey makes a significant contribution to understanding how social media is shaping the contemporary information landscape.”

    The survey was open to all professional journalists working in Ireland, and was distributed widely to attract the broadest possible set of responses. In sum, the survey collected information from journalists working in all areas of reporting, from Irish news to world news, and from arts through business, lifestyle, sports, and technology. Respondents for the most part identified as skilled users of social media, and worked for a wide range of media, from print to broadcast to online-only publications.

     “The survey reveals that the vast majority of journalists in Ireland use social media for sourcing news leads, content, and verifying information, but the majority still believe that, without external verification, the information cannot be trusted,” says co-author Dr. Bahareh Heravi, who leads the Digital Humanities and Journalism Research Group (Insight @ NUIG) that that initiated the survey. “Very few journalists use specialist tools to validate information, instead relying on the practice of contacting individuals directly. While this practice upholds traditional journalistic procedures for verifying information, in the age of social media, it is an increasingly time consuming process”.

    The survey poses a wide variety of questions to journalists, in an effort to reveal how journalists integrate social media into their workflows, how they perceive the information they find through social media, and what steps they take to investigate a social media sources’ validity. Overall, the survey reveals that Irish journalists have integrated social media into their journalistic practices quite heavily: 99% of Irish journalists use social media, with half of those using it daily. While most journalists believe that using social media makes them more engaged with their audience and with other journalists, over half state that they believe social media is undermining traditional journalistic values. While social media is most popular with journalists for sourcing leads and content, a minority believe that content found on social media can be trusted, and rely on contact with ‘real world’ sources for verification. In sum, social media – as part of the news production lifecycle – is here to stay, but its use is not without precaution and effort.

    The report has been published on the Digital Humanities and Journalism Group’s website at and is being launched at the ‘Citizen Journalism and Social Media Archiving’ mini-track at the 48th HICSS conference (Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences) on 7th January 2015. The session is co-chaired by two of the survey report authors - Dr. Bahareh Heravi (HuJo, Insight at NUI Galway) and Dr. Natalie Harrower (Digital Repository of Ireland, Royal Irish Academy).



    For more information:

    Dr Bahareh Heravi, Insight at NUI Galway

    Dr Natalie Harrower, Digital Repository of Ireland


    Digital Repository of Ireland Decade of Centenaries Digital Preservation award.

    The Digital Repository of Ireland believes that digital heritage is at risk of destruction and loss if action is not taken. Digital decay is the gradual decay of digital content - lost data that cannot be accessed because computers no longer understand the legacy formats. The solution is digital preservation – active ongoing data management, including changing formats, standards, and software. 

    The ‘Decade of Centenaries’ marks a significant period in modern Irish history and provides an important juncture for both national reflection and commemoration. It, as an exercise in public history and national, cultural memory, seeks to (re)engage and educate the general public through events, exhibitions, both online and physical, public lectures, etc., on pivotal and sometimes contentious Irish moments that shape our current understandings of the Irish political, social and economic sphere within the national and international context. 

    To coincide with this programme of events the Digital Repository of Ireland has opened a call for expressions of interest from custodians of heritage material relating to the Decade of Centenaries who wish to digitally preserve their holdings. We will engage with winning contributors to provide best practice guidance and digital preservation services for these collections. The collection will also be launched at DRI’s Digital Preservation for the Arts, Social Sciences and the Humanities (DPASSH) conference in June 2015. 

    The winning application will receive the services of a digital archivist to undertake tasks that may include: metadata creation and standardisation, assessment of file formats, deposit of collections in DRI for digital preservation, possibly digitisation of collections.

    Eligibility criteria:

    • Applicants and/or the collection must be based at either; a heritage institution, a research performing organisation, an archive, library, community heritage group or local history group.
    • Applications are welcome from DRI consortium members. 
    • The applicant must have permission or be authorised to sign DRI’s legal agreements on behalf of their organisation. (See DRI terms and conditions). 
    • The applicant must own copyright in the collection or have permission from the copyright holder to digitise the collection and make it available in the DRI. Please note that the copyright remains with the applicant and is not transferred to DRI. (See DRI terms and conditions). 
    • Orphan works, that is ‘works and other subject-matter which are protected by copyright or related rights and for which no right-holder is identified or for which the right-holder, even if identified, is not located’, cannot be considered for this call. (
    • An eligible collection must either be partially or fully digitised and described, and must contribute to the national narrative on the period under consideration (1912-22). 
    • Collections which can be made publicly accessible in the Repository will be prioritised.
    • DRI selection criteria will include a consideration of the volume of the collection and the work required to prepare that collection for deposit. Where a collection in its entirety is deemed too large for this current call we will prepare a proportion of that collection.
    • Successful collections must be available for public launch of the DRI in June 2015.
    • Successful applicants must be willing and available to work with DRI’s digital archivists April - June 2015. After June 2015 the administration of the collection in DRI will be maintained by the collection owner. 
    • All applications will be reviewed by the DRI review committee. All decisions are final. 
    • Applicants must fill in all sections of the application form and remain within word count where applicable. 

    Please note that digital objects prepared by DRI will be published by the DRI repository and will be accessible online by all public users. 

    All interested parties must submit their completed application to by 31st January 2015. Incomplete or late applications will not be accepted. In your email please quote “Decade of Centenaries Digital Preservation award” in the subject line.

    For an application form and a copy of DRI's terms and conditions please email


    DPASSH 2015 Abstract Submission system now open!

    Abstracts are now being accepted via the DPASSH conference website (

    DPASSH2015 is the 1st Annual Conference on Digital Preservation for Arts, Social Sciences and Humanities. It takes place June 25-26, 2015 in Dublin, and is being hosted by us, the Digital Repository of Ireland. Abstracts for Long Papers, Short Papers, and Posters are due January 26, 2015. 

    Please see for all details.

    New Job Vacancy! Research Assistant - Social Repository of Ireland

    Do you have excellent research skills? How about an interest in social media? Can you dig into an area of research, formulate the key elements of inquiry, and write concisely, with clarity and purpose?  We might have a job for you.... 

    Research Assistant for the Social Repository of Ireland projecct, based at the DRI at the Royal Irish Academy.

    Note: the deadline for applications is very soon: Friday 19th December at 10am

    This is a five-month contract, starting in January 2015.

    See the full job spec:

    Job Vacancy: DRI Digital Archivist for the ComWICE project

    We released the job spec for a new position at DRI today: DRI Digital Archivist for the ComWICE project. For deadlines and links to the job spec,  

    Note also that the Linked Data Postdoctoral Researcher position closes tomorrow.

    Prof. Oberlander lecture now online

    If you missed it in person, or wanted to take a second look at the slides, then you're in luck! Video of Professor Jon Oberlander's recent talk at the RIA, "Mapping the Mad God's Dream - text mining, literature, and the city"  (October 30, 2014) is now available:

    DRI Launches Guidelines on choosing a CMS

    DRI has launched another set of guidelines - this time a helpful guide to choosing the right Content Management System (CMS) Technology for your organisation. 

    This document is important because Content Management Systems provide the backbone of data management. Before you can ingest into a trusted digital repository (like DRI!), you need a place to record metadata and store digital objects. Widely available tools such Excel are often used as a default, but they can actually make for more work in the end, because, for example, Excel cannot export to XML, which is a common markup language used in the creation of Linked Data, or for encoding metadata when preparing to deposit in a repository. This is just one small example of why it is worth taking the time to research suitable Content Management Systems for you requirements.

    DRI receives numerous queries about Content Management Systems from people with varying ranges of cataloguing and collection management experience. Given the unique requirements of different organisations, we cannot recommend specific software, but we do feel that we are providing a useful service by publishing this overview of the available options. The guidelines promote research-based decision-making: There is a breakdown of the advantages and disadvantages of open source versus proprietary software, as well as a set of practical steps to take when considering the kind of system that would best suit an organisation’s needs.

    Please let us know what you think! Download Choosing Content Management Technologies and visit our Publications page for more reports and guidelines.

    Job Vacancy: DRI Programme Manager

    We are currently accepting applications for the position of DRI Programme Manager. This is a full time fixed term maternity cover, starting no later than January 16, 2015. For details on this and other positions currently open at DRI, see the Vacancies page.

    Linking Open Data Cloud updated

    The Linking Open Data Cloud has been updated, and you can find various versions of it, along with contextual information, here:



    Linking Open Data cloud diagram 2014, by Max Schmachtenberg, Christian Bizer, Anja Jentzsch and Richard Cyganiak.



    IHA Doctoral Supervision seminar at NUI Galway

    DRI's Dr. Sandra Collins will be speaking on Monday Nov 10 at 'Advances in Digital Technologies: New Possibilities and Challenges', as part of the Irish Humanities Alliance Doctoral Supervision Lunchtime Workshops 2014/15.

    The seminar takes place at the Moore Institute Room G010, Ground Floor, Hardiman Research Building (HRB), NUI Galway from 11:30am-2:30pm.

    For more information see:



    Social Repository project in the Irish Times

    All the data



    Our collaborative project to build a Social Repository for Ireland is featured in an article in today's Irish Times. Titled All the data that’s fit to print – and archive for posterity, the article discusses the growing importance of data analytics in journalism, as well as the equal importance of archiving social data - which is of great interest to data analytics - in a trusted repository.

    The article contains contributions from our collaborators Dr. Bahareh Heravi (Head of the Digital Humanities and Journalism Group at Insight at NUI Galway, and Lead Data Scientist at the Irish Times), and Ihab Salawdeh (Research Assistant on the Social Repository of Ireland project at Insight at NUI Galway).

    DRI Vacancy: Linked Data Postdoctoral Researcher

    DRI is seeking applications for a Linked Data Postdoctoral Researcher to work on the Irish Record Linkage 1864-1913 project, which started in January 2014.

    The successful candidate shall work with two Principal Investigators on this project, Dr Sandra Collins (Director of the DRI), and Dr. Ciara Breathnach (University of Limerick). This exciting interdisciplinary project is funded by the Irish Research Council and is at the nexus of linked data technologies, digital archiving and medical humanities.

    See the Vacancies page for details and a link to the job spec.

    Linked Data for Libraries Registration closes TODAY at 5pm

    We're almost full, so we are closing down registration and placing the catering orders this afternoon at 5pm. Great to see such interest! To see if places are still available, visit:

    Registration Open for Linked Data for Libraries Nov 6

    For a full programme and registration details, see

    Schools’ Collection material from Co. Galway now available on

    DRI is very pleased to be working with the National Folklore Collection in UCD and Fiontar in DCU on the Duchas Programme, which has just announced that Schools’ Collection material from Co. Galway is now available on

    Among other gems, you can find out about the clothes once worn on the Claddaghlearn how to make poitín, or study the tools once used in Rosscahill. Further information is available in the press release / preasráiteas

    From January 2015, the public will have the opportunity to participate in this project. 

    Please visit the Duchas website for more information and to explore the collections,



    DRI joins the International Council on Archives



    We are pleased to announce that The Digital Repository of Ireland has become a member of the International Council on Archives.

    The International Council on Archives (ICA) is dedicated to the effective management of records and the preservation, care and use of the world's archival heritage through its representation of records and archive professionals across the globe. There are approximately 1400 members in 198 countries and territories and ICA partners include UNESCO, the Council of Europe and Blue Shield International.

    DRI is a member of the ICA, as well as a member of the following ICA sections: Section for Local, Municipal and Territorial Archives, Section on University and Research Institution Archives, ICA European Regional Branch (EURBICA).

    Inspiring Ireland a finalist for the 2014 Digital Preservation Awards

    September 11, 2014 
    For Immediate Release

    Inspiring Ireland a finalist for the 2014 Digital Preservation Awards







    We are delighted to announce that our collaborative project, Inspiring Ireland, has been chosen as a finalist for the 2014 Digital Preservation Awards. Thirteen finalists in four different categories were announced by the Digital Preservation Coalition on September 11, 2014. Inspiring Ireland is a finalist for the DPC Award for Safeguarding the Digital Legacy, which celebrates the practical application of preservation tools to protect at-risk digital objects.

    Inspiring Ireland is an ambitious project to share high-quality images of Ireland’s treasured cultural objects in a single website, built on DRI’s trusted digital repository infrastructure. The project is a collaboration between the DRI, the Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, and eight of Ireland’s National Cultural Institutions: Abbey Theatre, Chester Beatty Library, Crawford Art Gallery Cork, Irish Museum of Modern Art, National Museum of Ireland, National Archives of Ireland, National Gallery of Ireland, National Library of Ireland. It is significant because of its combination of curation, partnership and digital preservation, and because of its extensive national scale: it is the first time that objects from all of these institutions have been brought together (while also being properly preserved) into a single curated exhibition for public access. 

    William Kilbride, Executive Director of the Digital Preservation Coalition, stated: "It’s amazing to see how much Inspiring Ireland has achieved in such a short space of time. It is a wonderful example of collaboration to achieve a shared goal and it has communicated some vital and subtle messages about the importance of digital preservation."

    The Digital Preservation Awards were created in 2004 to raise awareness about digital preservation, and are the most prominent celebration of achievement for those people and organisations that have made significant and innovative contributions to ensuring our digital memory is accessible tomorrow.

    The Digital Preservation Awards have been celebrating excellence for 10 years now, and they are being supported by some leading organisations in the field, including the NCDD and Open Planets Foundation. The awards ceremony will be hosted by the Wellcome Trust at their newly refurbished London premises on Monday 17th November. 

    The finalists will attract significant publicity and a deserved career boost, both at organisation and individual level. Those who walk away with a Digital Preservation Award on the night can be proud to claim to be amongst the best projects and practitioners within a rapidly growing and international field. 

    For more information, see To follow the awards, see #dpa2014 on Twitter, and visit the following websites:
    Inspiring Ireland
    Digital Preservation Coalition


    Media contact information:

    Dr. Natalie Harrower
    Creative Lead, Inspiring Ireland
    Manager, Education and Outreach
    Digital Repository of Ireland
    Royal Irish Academy
    19 Dawson St.
    Dublin 2, Ireland


    Watch the Inspiring Ireland video:


    HEAnet 2014 conference programme released

    HEAnet has released a draft programme for their Nov 2014 conference: If you're curious about what we're up to at DRI,  then you're in luck, as we are presenting three separate talks on aspects of our research.

    DAHPHD Annual Institute

    The fourth annual DAHPHD Institute kicks off this morning at UCC Cork. DRI recently took responsibility for delivering the Royal Irish Academy's contribution to the collaborative PhD, and we're very excited to engage in discussion with students, faculty, and the excellent lineup of speakers present over the next two days. The full program is available on the DAHPHD's website, and you can follow tweets at the hashtag #DAH2014, or follow @dahphd.

    Irish Record Linkage 1864-1913 project launches website

    The Irish Record Linkage 1864-1913 project, which is a collaboration between the University of Limerick, the Digital Repository of Ireland, and Insight @ NUI Galway, has launched a new website. Visit for more information about the project and participants, blog posts, a list of upcoming talks, etc.

    New Slides on IRL project

    Slides from Christophe Debruyne's recent presentation on the Irish Record Linkage project, delivered at the 6th International Workshop on Knowledge representation for Health Care (KR4HC 2014) in Vienna, Austria on July 21, 2014, are now available on our Slideshare site: Towards Linked Vital Registration Data for Reconstituting Families and Creating Longitudinal Health Histories.

    New Hires in DRI

    July 2014:

    We've had a year of tremendous growth and output at DRI, and have hired a number of new staff across our partner institutions. We would like to take the opportunity to welcome these staff members -- some of whom joined us a while ago, and some in the last couple of weeks:

    At Trinity College, we welcome two members who have joined the team to work on the Harry Clarke demonstrator project -- Marta Bustillo, Assistant Librarian and Metadata Cataloguer, and Joanne Carroll, Digital Photographer, who are both based at TCD's Digital Resource & Imaging Services (DRIS). At the Trinity Centre for High Performance Computing (TCHPC), Jenny O'Neill has joined the team as a DRI Data Curator. And most recently, we welcome Alejandro Lamas, the new Systems Developer at TCHPC.

    At NUI Maynooth, Brian Hughes joins the team as a postdoctoral researcher on the Letters of 1916 Demonstrator project, which is housed at An Foras Feasa under the new NUIM Co-PI, Susan Schreibman.

    At DIT, Fabrizio Valerio Covone is the new software engineer working on DRI's user interface.

    And at the Royal Irish Academy, several new staff have joined DRI to work on leveraged projects. Christophe Debruyne joins us as the Linked Data specialist on the DRI-Insight RTÉ Project, Dolores Grant comes on board as the IRL-DRI Digital Archivist on the Irish Records Linkage 1864-1913 Project, and we welcome aboard two staff members to deliver DRI's new role in administering the Royal Irish Academy's contribution to the Digital Arts and Humanities Collaborative PhDLorna Murphy, DAH Executive Assistant, and Sharon Webb, DAH Knowledge Transfer Manager.

    Welcome to the DRI! We are very pleased to have you all as part of our team.


    August 2013:

    We are pleased to announce a number of changes in DRI staffing:

    At the Royal Irish Academy, Paddi Leinster, our Programme Manager, returns from leave this week. Welcome back, Paddi! 

    Kate McCarthy, our interim Programme Manager, will be transferring the role back to Paddi, and then will move onto her new position in DRI, as the DRI-INSIGHT Digital Archivist. In this capacity, she will work on a joint project with DRI, RTÉ, and Insight @ NUIG (DERI), which has been created as a result of DRI winning SFI funding in the new major Research Centres Programme (See and

    This collaborative project also secures Dr. Nuno Lopes, who has been working on a Linked Data project with DRI and Fiontar, as the new DRI-INSIGHT Linked Data Specialist. The goal of the project is to deliver a rich Content Discovery prototype across all the RTÉ Archives, which will also enhance the DRI Repository.
    We are also pleased to welcome Peter Tiernan to the DRI team at Trinity College Dublin. Peter is our new Systems and Storage Engineer, and will be working on the DRI storage layer as part of the Design and Implementation team.


    May 2013:

    Please welcome the following new staff to DRI:

    Catherine Ryan, Digital Archivist Assistant, Royal Irish Academy
    Katie Blackwood, Research Assistant, Kilkenny Design Workshops demonstrator project, NIVAL at NCAD
    Kate McCarthy, Programme Manager of DRI, Royal Irish Academy



    February 2013:

    Over the past month, we've had three new additions to the DRI team. We are pleased to welcome:

    Helen Ryan, who is taking over as our Programme Manager at the RIA
    Anna Deegan, UI and UX Designer at the Digital Media Centre at DIT
    Monica Harasimiuk, Software Engineer - Internationalisation Team, also at the DMC at DIT.



    January 2013:

    We are delighted to announce the appointment of several new members to the DRI team over the last months:

    James Wogan, Decipher Dissemination and Exploitation Manager, based at the RIA
    Dr. Nuno Lopes, Research Associate at DERI, on secondment to us at the RIA
    Rósmáire Ní Cholla, Digital Curator, based at NUIG
    Kathryn Cassidy, Software Engineer at TCD's TCHPC
    Stuart Kenny, Software Engineer at TCD's TCHPC


    September 2012: Over the past few months, our team has grown. We are happy to welcome the following people to the DRI team:

    Rebecca Grant, our new Digital Archivist, based at the Royal Irish Academy.
    Dr. Natalie Harrower, our new Manager of Education and Outreach, also based at the Royal Irish Academy.
    Mairead Heffron, who is taking over as Programme Manager of the DRI project while Paddi Leinster is on maternity leave.
    Sinead Redmond, Software Engineer with an Foras Feasa, NUI Maynooth.
    Raymond Noonan, Software engineer with an Foras Feasa, NUI Maynooth.



    Slides for Computational History workshop and Turchin lecture now online

    We had a full house for the 1st International Computational History Workshop on Friday June 27, and also welcomed a large crowd to the free public lecture by Professor Peter Turchin, held in conjuction with the workshop the previous evening. Presenters' slides are now available directly from the Programme pages on the KDEG website: The Mathematics of Impending Social Implosion by Prof. Peter Turchin, and 1st International Workshop on Computational History

    Audio files will follow shortly.

    DRI presentation to Metadata Developer Network Workshop 2014

    Slides from Christophe Debruyne's presentation on the RTÉ Content Discovery Project at the Metadata Developer Network Workshop 2014 in Geneva, Switzerland, are now available on the DRI slideshare account:


    Three new DRI Factsheets have been released on the website. They cover considerations and decisions made by DRI on Copyright, Licensing and Open Acces; File Formats; Long-term Digital Preservation.  

    See all Factsheets on the Publications page.

    Follow #DRIFacts on Twitter for new releases.

    DRI Vacancy: Developer/Postdoctoral Researcher

    Developer/Postdoctoral Researcher, based at NUIM. Deadline 30th June. See Vacancies.

    Dr. Sandra Collins and Prof. Rob Kitchin at ESOF2014


    Two of DRI's Principal Investigators, our Director Dr. Sandra Collins (based at the Royal Irish Academy) and Professor Rob Kitchin (NUIM) have been invited to speak at the Euroscience Open Forum later this month in Copenhagen (ESOF2014).

    The Euroscience Open Forum (ESOF) is Europe’s largest, general science meeting that usually draws over 4000 participants. It is held in a European city every two years. ESOF 2014 will be hosted in Copenhagen from June 21-26, 2014.

    ESOF is an interdisciplinary, pan-European meeting, held under the auspices of Euroscience, which aims to:

    • Showcase the latest advances in science and technology;
    • Promote a dialogue on the role of science and technology in society and public policy;
    • Stimulate and provoke public interest, excitement and debate about science and technology.


    Dr. Collins will be speaking at the panel Big data, big deal: big problem? (see Sandra Collins speaker profile)

    Professor Kitchin will be speaking at the panel Urban life - urban form (see Rob Kitchin speaker profile).

    For more information, see the conference website, read the latest newsletter, and follow the conference on Twitter at #ESOF2014.

    DRI in the ARAI newsletter


    The Archives and Records Association of Ireland (ARAI) has released their summer newsletter. It is packed with interesting articles, including two by our staff on DRI related projects:

    A discussion of our Irish Record Linkage 1864-1913 project, by Dolores Grant (starting on page 6); and
    A discussion of our the digitisation aspects of our Harry Clarke demonstrator project, by Joanne Carroll (starting on page 20).

    Didn't make it to #OR2014?


    Open Repositories 2014, currently taking place in Helsinki, is livestreaming its sessions. Information here:

    DRI team members are delivering two papers that can be viewed via the livestream:


    Tuesday June 10, 11:30am GMT
    Leveraging National Federated Identity Services
    Stuart Kenny, Peter Tiernan
    Trinity College Dublin, Ireland

    The Digital Repository of Ireland (DRI) is an interactive, trusted digital repository for social and cultural content held by Irish institutions. By providing a central internet access point and interactive multimedia tools, the DRI will facilitate engagement with contemporary and historical data, allowing the public, students, and scholars to research Ireland’s cultural heritage and social life in ways never before possible.

    As a national infrastructure DRI must be accessible to a broad range of user, from cross-institutional research teams, to casual users from the general public. To reduce the administrative burden on the repository it would be highly desirable if accounts could be dynamically provisioned, rather than requiring the intervention of an administrator. Similarly removing the ongoing maintenance of accounts would aid in the long-term sustainability of the infrastructure.

    For these reasons DRI has leveraged an existing national federated access management system, Edugate. Through this service users can access any Edugate enabled online resource using the credentials issued to them by their home institution.

    The integration of this service has opened DRI to a large number of potential users, without the expected increase in administrative overhead.


    Thursday June 12, 11:30am GMT
    Analyses of the usefulness of Software Defined Storage Solutions for Web-based Digital Preservation Applications

    Peter Tiernan, Jimmy Tang, Kristina Bako
    Trinity College Dublin, Ireland

    The Digital Repository of Ireland (DRI) is an interactive, national trusted digital repository for contemporary and historical, social and cultural data held by Irish institutions. The DRI has a requirement for a massively scalable, fully featured storage solution to store and preserve digital assets. Software defined storage has brought large scale storage within the reach of ordinary engineers and developers. The power and features provided by such systems can prove revolutionary and has the potential to deliver stable, vastly scalable storage to repository infrastructures at low cost. This presentation will explore four such solutions: Ceph, iRODS, GPFS and HDFS. Their features will be analysed and tested to assess suitability for the DRI. Criteria useful to digital repositories such as High Availability, Interfaces and Interoperability, replication and data security will be used to determine which solution best fits.

    Why does archiving matter?

    Just passing along this fun and snappy video from the recent archiving seminar, held in Dublin on April 30. The seminar, entitled "What is worth archiving?", was presented by the Near Media Co-Op in partnership with CAPTCHA EU Culture Initiative and with the support of the Dublin Community Forum. You can catch our director, Dr. Sandra Collins, a couple of times in the middle...

    Archiving Conference from Near TV on Vimeo.

    For more information on the seminar, see

    Friends of DRI Newsletter

    Looking for a quick summary of what DRI has been up to? Subscribe to our occasional newsletter, Friends of DRI. 

    The latest version is hot off the (digital) press: DRI update: Pilot preview, thesaurus guidelines, preserving cultural heritage, data driven humanities, and more!

    Pilot version of DRI repository previewed

    On May 14, 2014, we previewed a pilot version of the repository to a small group of internal stakeholders. While the repository is scoped for completion at the end of the PRTLI 5 project period (September 2015), we decided instead to plan a series of earlier staged launches, in order to better incorporate user feedback.

    The pilot version of DRI has 18 collections from 15 different institutions, and includes text, image, and audio file formats. Functionality exists for general searching, faceted searching, browsing collections or objects, downloading metadata in XML or exporting to Endnote, and more. Plans are underway for a public launch in the fall or winter of 2014, with increased collections, new formats, and expanded user tools. 

    Interested in a sneak preview? Take a look at the screencast below:


    New Developments at the DRI: presentation to BISA

    Natalie Harrower's presentation to the British and Irish Sound Archives association's annual conference on May 16, 2014 in Dublin is now available on the DRI Slideshare account

    The presentation covers new developments at the DRI in the last year, including repository development, the pilot preview, collaborative projects, and events. 

    Press Release: MoTIF Project launched

    Best Practice Thesaurus Construction guidelines and demonstration launched, available for use in libraries and archives across the world

    MoTIF is a collaborative project undertaken by the Digital Repository of Ireland (DRI) and the National Library of Ireland (NLI).

    The MoTIF project created a set of guidelines called Thesaurus Construction Guidelines: An introduction to Thesauri and Guidelines on their Construction. The guidelines are now freely available online and are accompanied by MoTIF, an online pilot thesaurus of Irish folklore.

    Thesauri are vital and valuable tools in content discovery, information organisation and retrieval -activities common to all fields including cultural heritage and higher education as well as business and enterprise. The guidelines act as a comprehensive introduction to thesauri and provide guidance on their construction using facet analysis, an increasingly popular method of organising terms selected for inclusion in a thesaurus and one recommended by ISO 25964, the international standard for thesauri.

    Dr Sandra Collins, Director of the Digital Repository of Ireland, noted that “We are so pleased to have had the opportunity to work on this project, to produce best practice guidelines and a working demo, for open re-use in the community. DRI wants to share best practices with the community to enable cost savings and improved standards of preservation and access, and these guidelines are a part of that goal.”

    The idea arose following the Digital Archiving in Ireland: National Survey of the Humanities and Social Sciences DRI report, which noted a large number of either custom made vocabularies or international vocabularies adapted for use with Irish content in the institutions surveyed. Our guidelines offer advice on how to bridge this vocabulary gap and ensure that information professionals have the advice they need to improve their own data practices by adhering to international standards and best practice.

    The project also built an online application, MoTIF, a pilot thesaurus which focuses on terms relating to Irish folklore, nature, animals, people, their occupations and activities primarily as they relate to the sustenance and support of the home and community. 

    The pilot thesaurus was constructed using TemaTres, the open source thesaurus management software, and allows users to search and browse the pilot thesaurus online. The MoTIF pilot thesaurus illustrates the principles of thesaurus construction outlined in the guidelines and uses terms sourced primarily from The Handbook of Irish Folklore by Seán Ó Súilleabháin, a key resource for folklorists in Ireland and the foundational document for the collecting strategy of the Irish Folklore Commission, now the National Folklore Collection in UCD.

    Visit the MoTIF pilot thesaurus of Irish folklore.

    For more information about the Linked Logainm project partners please see:
    Digital Repository of Ireland -
    National Library of Ireland -
    Please contact Catherine Ryan, the DRI Digital Librarian, for further information.

    Vacancies at DRI @ NUIM

    We have just posted vacancies for three positions on the DRI project, based at An Foras Feasa at the National Ireland of Maynooth. We are looking for a software engineer, a technology officer, and a postdoctoral researcher. For details of the posts and links to the job specifications, please see our Vacancies page. Note that all positions have an application deadline of May 20, 2014

    DRI Partners HuJo win BBC #newsHACK II award

    Congratulations to our partners at the Digital Journalism and Humanities Group (HuJo) at Insight @ NUIG for winning the "Connecting the News" category prize at the second BBC News Hackathon. Over two intense days, the team developed a Chrome extension called Hash2News, which allows users to find relevant news stories behind Twitter hashtags. DRI partners with members of HuJo on several funded collaborative projects, including the Social Repository of Ireland (SFI technical feasibility study) and the DRI-INSIGHT RTE project (see Projects page). A blog post on the hackathon and HuJo's winning innovation is available on the HuJo website, and you can follow the social media conversation on Twitter at #newsHACK.

    Our digital memories tomorrow – the Digital Preservation Awards 2014

    The Digital Preservation Coalition and partners are delighted to announce that nominations for the Digital Preservation Awards 2014 are now open!

    Digital Preservation Awards 2014 Logo

    Created in 2004 to raise awareness about digital preservation, the Digital Preservation Awards are the most prominent celebration of achievement for those people and organisations that have made significant and innovative contributions to ensuring our digital memory is accessible tomorrow.
    The Digital Preservation Awards are open to all. There is no restriction on public or private sector and there is no restriction to whether the applicant is a member of the DPC or where they are based. 

    Full criteria for each category and the rules of entry are provided on the DPC website

    The deadline for entries is 28th July 2014, so to be in with a chance of gaining recognition for all your hard work, enter the Digital Preservation Awards 2014 today.

    Digital Repository of Ireland brings history to life online - article

    There's a really good article about us on Silicon Republic right now - it covers a number of our current activities (Inspiring Ireland, Research Data Alliance plenary, our collaborative projects with RTE via the Insight Centre for Data Analytics -- and it also provides a little window into the motivation of our Director, Dr. Sandra Collins. See Digital Repository of Ireland brings history to life online by Claire O'Connell, published 04.04.2014.

    Three jobs at DRI

    Three vacancies are being advertised at DRI; a Linux Systems Developer, a Software Engineer, and a Data Curator. Full job specifications linked from our Vacancies page: All jobs have early April deadlines.

    Vacancy at DRI: Knowledge Transfer Manager

    DRI is seeking applications for a 16th-month position as Knowledge Transfer Manager, working on the DAH collaborative PhD programme. Deadline is Wednesday, 7th May 2014 at 5pm. Full job spec and application details at

    Inspiring Ireland in the Irish Times

    The Irish Times has published an article about Inspiring Ireland. You can read it here:

    DRI's Sandra Collins and Minister Jimmy Deenihan launch Inspiring Ireland



    • Inspiring Ireland is an ambitious project to bring Ireland's renowned national collections to a global audience
    • Collections from Irish national museums, libraries, galleries, archives and theatre available free of charge at one address
    • Project aims to drive enhanced digitisation of, and public access to, Ireland nationally and internationally important collections
    • International team for project aims to raise financial support of €15 million over 10 years 


    Inspiring Ireland from Digital Repository of Ireland on Vimeo.

    Sunday, March 16th - Jimmy Deenihan TD, Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, will today launch Inspiring Ireland - a unique and ambitious project to bring the digital collections of Ireland's renowned national cultural institutions to a truly global audience. 

    Minister Deenihan, accompanied by John Hartnett of the Irish Technology Leadership Group (ITLG) and Dr Sandra Collins, Director of the Digital Repository of Ireland (DRI), will launch Inspiring Ireland during a visit to Stanford University, California.

    Inspiring Ireland is an exciting and significant new departure for Ireland's national collections as it will grow to provide free access at one address ( to the treasures held by Ireland's internationally acclaimed cultural institutions, including the country's national museums, libraries, galleries, archives and theatre.

    The project is a collaboration between the Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, the Digital Repository of Ireland, the National Library, the National Museum, the National Gallery, the National Archives, the Irish Museum of Modern Art, the Crawford Art Gallery, the Chester Beatty Library and the Abbey Theatre.

    The project is supported by an International Advisory Board, led by John Hartnett, which will help with technology direction and commercialisation and encourage financial support for Inspiring Ireland from the United States. 

    Minister Deenihan commented:

    "It gives me great pride to launch Inspiring Ireland.  Ireland’s national cultural institutions hold collections that are of great international significance. They chart the story of Ireland, from pre-Christian and medieval times to the modern day. And, they hold as part of their collections treasures of international importance drawn from the across the globe.

    "My vision for Inspiring Ireland is that, through this website, everyone will be able to access these treasures free of charge and at one address. Inspiring Ireland will also support the digitisation and preservation of Ireland's digital cultural heritage for future generations, showcasing once again Ireland's growing reputation as a centre for the innovative use of digital technology."

    Minister Deenihan has also thanked the members of an international advisory board who have agreed to support the project:

    'John Hartnett has done outstanding work in the United States in his role as founder and President of the Irish Technology Leadership Group (ITLG) together with his ongoing involvement with the American Ireland Fund. He is uniquely qualified to assist the Government with this project.

    "John has agreed to Chair an International Advisory Board for the project which will seek support in the US for Inspiring Ireland. This board will include Rory McInerney, Vice President Intel, Una Fox, Vice President Disney, Pauline Ryan, Philanthropist and Founder IARC, Barry O Sullivan, CEO AltoCloud. I want to thank them for agreeing to be part of what I expect will be a wonderful and exciting project."

    John Hartnett commented:

    “The project will provide global access to Ireland's cultural treasures at one online address. It will bring Ireland’s history and heritage into the 21st Century and will open up Ireland’s culture for creative minds”

    For launch, Inspiring Ireland features a core exhibition - A Sense of Place - accompanied by two further exhibitions - A Sense of Freedom, and A Sense of Identity.  These three exhibitions are populated with more than 100 fully searchable objects. Inspiring Ireland aims to be far more than a portal: it aims to be a platform with content both curated and preserved in a trusted digital repository to facilitate innovative means of discovering and exploring Ireland’s cultural heritage. Curators and experts will provide cultural interpretation of the objects and exhibits.

    The digital platform for the project is in place having been developed by the Digital Repository of Ireland, which has been funded by the Irish Government to date principally through the Third Level funding scheme HEA PRTLI cycle 5, from which it has received €5m.

    The portal will showcase the digitised paintings, letters, sculpture, historical objects, photography, letters and documents, and ephemera which make up Ireland’s national collection.  It will also play a significant role in the digital preservation of the collection.  The portal can be viewed at

    Media queries:
    Press and Information Office
    Tel: 087 6737338 / (01) 631 3807 / 3838 / 3848 (direct)
    Web site:

    We're hiring!

    Currently recruiting an Executive Assistant to work in the DRI offices at the RIA on the DAH collaborative program. Deadline is very soon: Tuesday March 18 at noon. Want to decode these acronyms? See vacancies for more info link to full job spec.

    Medical Humanities symposium almost full

    Our symposium on the Medical Humanities, taking place this Thursday March 6 at the Royal Irish Academy, is almost booked out. Please register soon to avoid missing out on this cutting-edge area of interdisciplinary research:

    Hashtag for the event is #MedHumRIA.

    Rob Kitchin awarded RIA Gold Medal

    We are proud to congratulate one of DRI's Principle Investigators, Professor Rob Kitchin from National University of Ireland Maynooth, on being presented a Royal Irish Academy Gold Medal in the Social Sciences yesterday by An Taoiseach Enda Kenny, TD. For more on Professor Kitchin's accomplishments, see this article in the Irish Times: Taoiseach presents medals for major contribution to scientific research.

    Registration for Medical Humanities Symposium now open

    Registration for Medical Humanities: New Frontiers or Back to the Past? is now open. Please note that although this event is free, spaces are limited so registration is required. See the event page for details.

    Job Vacancy: Digital Archivist

    Digital Archivist on the Irish Records Linkage 1864-1913 project. Monday 24th February 2014 at 12 noon. Details and application procedure on

    Slides from Data Protection Workshop now available

    The DRI hosted a workshop entitled "Data Protection Issues for Trusted Digital Repositories: Challenges and Solutions" on Thursday, the 16th of January 2014, in the Royal Irish Academy. This interactive workshop, led by Dr. Jane Gray (Department of Sociology and Irish Qualitative Data Archive, NUI Maynooth), provided plentiful opportunities for discussion and exchange on data protection issues, both for individual research participants, and for data repositories.

    Mr. Garrett O’Neill from the Office of the Data Protection Commissioner also spoke on the current position of data protection in Ireland. Members of the DRI International Advisory Group were amongst those who attended, generously sharing their experience and expertise in response to each of the issues raised during the course of the discussions. They were: Dr. Hans Jørgen Marker, Director at Svensk, Nationell Datatjänst (Swedish Data Service); Dr. Louise Corti, Associate Director & Head ESDS Qualidata, UK Data Archive; Prof. Peter Doorn, Director of Data Archiving and Networked Services (DANS); Prof. Clifford Lynch, Director, Coalition for Networked Information - CNI (USA).

    The DRI received a very positive response to this workshop, and representatives of many of the principal organizations and research groups involved in archiving data in Ireland were present.

    Slides from this workshop are available at DRI's Slideshare account.

    Job Vacancy: Postdoctoral Researcher in Historical Geography

    One of the projects on which we collaborate, Irish Record Linkage, 1864-1913, is seeking a Postdoctoral Researcher in Historical Geography, to be based at the University of Limerick on the supervision of Dr. Ciara Breathnach.

    This project is an IRC Co-PI Interdisciplinary Research Project Grants Scheme 2013

    The project will provide an innovative demonstrator for the re-use of Public Sector Information, applying linked data technologies to birth, death and marriage records, more commonly known as vital registration (VR/PSI) data (1864-1913) to reconstitute families and create longitudinal health histories. The project will create a Knowledge Platform entitled Irish Record Linkage (IRL) to enhance the research potential of individual level metadata, using best practice in Digital Archiving to facilitate the application of Linked Data technologies, and ingest content into the Digital Repository of Ireland for long term accessibility and preservation.

    Essential Requirements:

    • PhD in history or a cognate discipline.
    • Strong publication record in a relevant area e.g. publications in the field of historical geography, historical demography and/or historical lifecycles studies.
    • Experience of Research Projects, proposal writing and reporting
    • Information and Communication Technology (ICT) skills

    For application information and a full job spec, please see:

    Fulbright TechImpact Awards

    The call for Fulbright TechImpact Awards is now open. Deadline for application is Tuesday 4th March, 2014 at 5pm.

    The Fulbright TechImpact Awards are new grants for scholars or professionals in the field of Communications Technology to complete non-commercial research in the U.S. for a period of two weeks to three months from July 2014. The new Fulbright TechImpact Awards are specially designed to respond to the potential and pace of ICT across all disciplines.

    TechImpact applicants should be seeking to explore the transformative power of communication technology across all disciplines, but the following disciplines are particularly encouraged:

    • mobile technology
    • digital arts, humanities, and culture
    • education

    For eligibility and application details, please download the Fulbright TechImpact Awards flyer.

    Slides from WMPA2014 now online

    DRI Director Sandra Collins and RTÉ Head of Archives Brid Dooley gave presentations at WMPA2014 earlier this week on the DRI-RTE-INSIGHT collaborative project. WMPA2014 is the 1st Winter School on Multimedia Processing and Application, and was colocated with MMM2014, The 20th Anniversary International Conference on MultiMedia Modeling, at Trinity College Dublin this week.

    The presentation is titled "Building a linked data based content discovery service for the RTÉ Archives," and slides from both speakers are available on our Slideshare page.

    Job Vacancy: Semantic Web, Social Media, Journalism

    We are partnering with the Digital Humanities and Journalism group at INSIGHT @ NUIG on a project to research technologies for building a national social media repository. This funded project is hiring two Research Assistants, to be based at NUIG. 

    The successful candidates will conduct research into the application of Linked Data technologies for creating a national social media repository, and will be focusing on topics such as social media event detection, social network analysis, Semantic Web and Linked Data, and the archival and contextualisation of social media content.

    The Insight Centre for Data Analytics at NUI Galway (formerly DERI) hosts one of the most internationally-recognised Linked Data research groups in the world, and is dedicated to research aimed at enabling Networked Knowledge using Semantic Web technologies. The Digital Repository of Ireland is a key national aggregator of cultural and social data, and will work closely with the successful candidates.

    For a full job spec, see

    New Project for DRI : Irish Record Linkage, 1864-1913

    Irish Record Linkage is a project funded by the Irish Research Council, and developed in partnership with the Digital Repository of Ireland, University of Limerick and Insight at NUI Galway. Full information is on the project page: Irish Record Linkage 1864-1913.

    INSIGHT officially launched; DRI to collaborate

    We're very excited to be kicking off 2014 by diving into our collaboration with RTÉ and INSIGHT @ NUIG.

    DRI will be collaborating with RTÉ and INSIGHT in a content discovery project that will open up the RTÉ archives, facilitating greater discovery for users. The collaboration brings together the skills and experience of the internationally recognised semantic web and linked data centre (formerly DERI) with the national trusted digital repository and the rich essence and curation skills of RTÉ.

    The INSIGHT centre was officially launched at the close of 2013. The official press release follows below.


    Footage of the launch:

    Interview with Professor Mark Ferguson, Sean Sherlock TD, and Treemetrics around the Insight project.

    Interview with Professor Stefan Decker, INSIGHT @ NUIG, on the RTÉ collaboration:


    Press Release: Minister Bruton launches €88 million SFI research centre, bringing new insights to Data Analytics

    • Insight, the Centre for Data Analytics, will position Ireland at the heart of global Data Analytics research
    • The largest investment in a single research centre in the history of the state
    • Uniting 4 universities, 30 industry partners, and 200 researchers in one multi-location research centre
    • Creating 300 direct jobs through 12 funded spin outs, as well as creating indirectly thousands of other job opportunities

    12th December 2013: The Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, Mr Richard Bruton T.D. and Minister for Research and Innovation, Mr Sean Sherlock T.D. officially launched Insight, a new Science Foundation Ireland (SFI) Research Centre for Data Analytics. In a joint initiative between DCU, NUI Galway, UCC and UCD, Insight, and other partner institutions,  brings together more than 200 researchers from these and other Higher Education institutions, with 30 industry partners, to position Ireland at the heart of global data analytics research.

    The Centre will receive funding of €58 million from the Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation through SFI’s Research Centres Programme, along with a further contribution of €30 million from 30 industry partners. Insight represents a new approach to research and development in Ireland, by connecting the scientific research of Ireland’s leading data analytics researchers with the needs of industry and enterprise. 

    Insight will work with more than 30 industry partners, ranging from small Irish startups to established SMEs and large multinationals, on a range of projects to advance data analytics technologies in Ireland. Industry partners include RTÉ, The Irish Times, Cisco, Microsoft,  Alcatel-Lucent , Santry  Sports Clinic, the IRFU, Avaya, TE Labs, TreeMetrics, NitroSell, Avego, UTRC , Shimmer and many more. 

    Big data is a sector targeted as part of the Disruptive Reforms in Action Plan for Jobs 2013, and today’s announcement marks delivery of a key action contained in the Plan.

    Speaking at the launch of Insight, Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, Mr Richard Bruton T.D. said: “Big data is a sector growing globally at 40% per annum, and we have targeted it as part of the Disruptive Reforms contained in Action Plan for Jobs 2013. This is a sector where Ireland has the potential to gain competitive advantage and attract significant numbers of investments and jobs, and we are putting in place measures to ensure that we can deliver on that potential. The establishment of this world-class SFI research centre in data analytics, with a total investment of €88million supported by my Department, is a strong signal of our ambition in this area. Today’s announcement, in combination with the other measures we have put in place in this sector, will help attract the investment, support the business ideas and create the jobs in Ireland that we need”.

    Also speaking at the launch, Minister for Research and Innovation, Mr Sean Sherlock T.D. said: “The launch of Insight is an important step forward in the development of the skills base necessary for Ireland to harness and channel the current and future potential of Big Data. Insight is a major national investment in this new area of research and one that is essential for Ireland’s future success in the technology sector.”

    Minister for Research and Innovation, Mr. Sean Sherlock, T.D.

    In today’s society, an increasing torrent of data is being created every second in the world around us. Insight will play a leading role in developing next generation technologies to capture and transform the raw data being generated into valuable concepts and ideas that can inform better decisions about society, the economy, healthcare and government.

    Insight will lead to the creation of 300 direct jobs, as well as to the training of the next generation of data analytics experts. Over the next six years, Insight research is expected to result in 12 new spin out companies, approximately 50 patent filings, and over 50 technology licenses, leading to thousands of indirect jobs in the data analytics sector.

    Data Analytics is big business as Ireland stands to benefit significantly from the scale of the global analytics market. The global market for business analytics is estimated to be worth in excess of $34 billion, with Big Data driving a 60% increase in the operating margins of retailers, while the annual value of data analytics for the US healthcare system is valued at $300 billion.

    Commenting on the potential for the data analytics market in Ireland, CEO of Insight, Professor Barry Smyth, said:  “Data analytics represents a huge growth opportunity for Ireland and we are perfectly positioned to take advantage of it. Spending on Big Data technologies is growing at 30% per annum as demand for data analytics skills continues to outstrip supply. In Insight we have brought together the country’s leading data analytics researchers to meet this demand and create new opportunities for Ireland and our industry partners.” 

    Speaking at the announcement, Professor Mark Ferguson, Director General of SFI and Chief Scientific Adviser to the Government said: “Insight will provide Ireland with a new flagship national research resource in information and communications technology (ICT) and underlines Ireland’s focused investment in excellent research with impact. Insight is one of seven world-class SFI Research Centres of scale and excellence that involve significant co-investment by industry partners. Insight will be undertaking research that is fundamental to Ireland’s enhanced competitive positioning in the area of data analytics as well as our international standing in the overall ICT sector.”




    Job Vacancy at DRI

    We are recruiting a software engineer for front-end development of the DRI project. See vacancies for more details (deadline Jan 16).

    E-tender for website implementation

    The DRI is working on a collaborative project, and has released an e-tender for the project's website implementation. You can view the e-tender here:

    Please note that you must be registered as a Supplier with e-Tenders in order to download the Request for Tender document, and registration is free.

    The deadline for applications is Monday January 6, 2014 at 12:00 noon.

    DRI featured in OpenAire Newsletter

    DRI has been featured in the latest OpenAIRE newsletter. OpenAIRE is the Open Access Infrastructure for Research in Europe. The project, which is three years long, aims to establish the infrastructure to support researchers in complying with the EC OA pilot and the ERC Guidelines on Open Access. Through the project, it will create a helpdesk system, portal and e-infrastructure for repository networks. It will also provide a repository facility for researchers who do not have access to an institutional or discipline-specific repository.

    Read the OpenAIRE newsletter.

    Search Solutions slides now online

    Dermot Frost's presentation on DRI repository infrastructure to the Search Solutions 2013 conference in London is now on our Slideshare account:

    Leinster House launches online library catalogue


    Leinster House has launched an online public access catalogue that encompasses all documents laid in the Leinster House library since 1922. The catalogue provides the research community and the public with access to over 80,000 reports, pamphlets, maps and other documents. 

    For more information, see

    To directly access the catalogue, go to:

    Slides from LAI CMG presentation now online

    Slides from the DRI presentation to the Library Association of Ireland’s Cataloguing and Metadata Group, presented by Catherine Ryan (Digital Archivist Assistant) are now online. The title of the talk was The MoTIF Project: Constructing a Pilot Thesaurus of Irish Folklore Using Facet Analysis.

    DRI presentations at HEAnet now available

    Two members of the DRI team presented papers at the recent HEAnet conference in Athlone. 

    Videos and slides from the following presentations are now available:

    Rebecca Grant (Digital Archivist) Sharing Irish Place Names as Linked Open Data  (about our Linked Logainm Project)

    Stuart Kenny (Software Engineer, Data Management) DevOps in the Digital Repository of Ireland

    Slides for #DPC_GetStarted posted

    Slides from our Nov 1 workshop with the Digital Preservation Coalition - Getting Started in Digital Preservation - are now available on the DPC site:



    Linked Logainm article on Europeana site

    DRI's Rebecca Grant and Nuno Lopes of INSIGHT @ NUI Galway have published a blog post for Europeana on the Linked Logainm project. The post looks at the demo site Location LODer, which is based on the Linked Logainm dataset and is the first documented use of Europeana’s Linked Data SPARQL endpoint. You can read the post here:


    Registration now open

    Registration is now open for our workshop on Linked Data and metadata cleaning. For more information and registration instructions, please see:

    #DPC_GetStarted conversation posted

    Did you miss our Getting Started in Digital Preservation event?

    Or were you there, and are searching for that elusive URL or tidbit of wisdom? Have no fear: we've collected the Twitter conversation via Storify. See it here:

    Launch of the DRI Factsheet Series

    As an academic research consortium charged with a pragmatic, multi-faceted task, the DRI is continually making decisions about the repository's scope, architecture, policies, and how to best serve user requirements. 

    We have released several publications, and will continue to do so as the project progresses. Similarly, we will soon post links to academic papers emerging from researchers on the project, and you can already view slide presentations from conferences and training events at our Slideshare account.

    Full length publications offer an in-depth view of the project, but we also feel that shorter, specific statements about our decisions would be useful to our depositors and peers in the repository and digital preseravation communities. So, today we are launching the DRI Factsheet Series, with the online publication of our first factsheet: Metadata and the DRI.

    Stay tuned for future releases! Follow #DRIFacts

    Want to stay in touch? We like Twitter, we have an RSS Feed, and you can join our monthly mailing list.


    Metadata and Linked Data workshop: Save the date!

    We're partnering with Free Your Metadata to deliver a workshop on metadata 'cleaning' and Linked Data. Date: Friday Dec 6. Place: Royal Irish Academy. Registration will open shortly - watch this space for details.

    Call for Papers: FIAT/IFTA television seminar

    FIAT/IFTA (International Federation of Television Archives) has announced the third television studies seminar on March 13th and 14th 2014. Organised by the Television Studies Commission of FIAT/IFTA the two-day seminar, entirely devoted to Television Documentary, will be hosted by the Netherlands Institute for Sound and Vision at Hilversum. For more information and the Call for Papers, see:

    Technology Voice names DRI Director as one of Ireland's Talented Women in Tech

    Dr. Sandra Collins has been named one to watch on a list of 'talented 38 women in technology' Ireland by Technology Voice.

    Journalist for a Night is this Friday!

    Discover Research Dublin is happening this Friday, September 27, in the corridor that runs from Trinity College Dublin, along Dawson St., and to the Royal Irish Academy. For a full list of events, see the official Discover Research Dublin website, and download the flyer and map.

    Journalist for a Night is DRI @ RIA's contribution to the evening. From 6-11pm, join us at the Royal Irish Academy for talks, a research game, and interactive exhibitions of RIA collections. For more information, see the event webpage and download the flyer

    All events are free and open to the public. 


    Press Release: Linked Logainm has been launched!

    For Immediate Release

    A new open dataset allowing Irish place names to be linked across the world by cutting edge technologies developed in Ireland is launched by Mr. Jimmy Deenihan, TD, Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht.

    L-R: Séamus Mac Giolla Chomhaill (Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht), Micheál Ó Conaire (the Placenames Branch), Dr. Sandra Collins (DRI), Fiona Ross (NLI), Jimmy Deenihan TD, at the launch of Linked Logainm. Photo Credit: Lar Boland. Copyright NLI. Licence: CC-BY.

    On Tuesday, September 10th the Linked Logainm resource was launched by Mr. Jimmy Deenihan, TD, Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht at the National Library of Ireland.

    Linked Logainm is a collaborative project undertaken by the Digital Repository of Ireland (DRI), INSIGHT @ NUIGalway (previously Digital Enterprise Research Institute DERI), Fiontar at Dublin City University, the National Library of Ireland and the Placenames Branch of the Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht

    The Linked Logainm project has created a new open dataset, which allows Irish place names to be linked across the world by cutting edge technologies developed in Ireland.

    Speaking at the launch Minister Deenihan said:

    “I wish to congratulate all of the project participants – The National Library, The Digital Repository of Ireland, Fiontar at Dublin City University, INSIGHT @ NUIGalway and the Placenames Branch of my Department, for the work which they have put into this project.  I am genuinely pleased to launch this digital resource, which will contribute to the promotion of our Placenames data as a resource for researchers including educators, students and genealogists as well as for heritage institutions including museums, archives and libraries, nationally and internationally. 

    This project which will also serve as a model  for the use of open and linked data is an excellent example of how modern ICT can be deployed to aid, inform and educate as widely as possible.”

    The new Linked Data version of the authoritative bilingual database of Irish place names is an open resource which can be widely used by web developers, computer scientists, researchers, the heritage community and librarians and archivists. is an online database containing over 100,000 Irish geographical names generated by the Placenames Branch of the Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, and the database is being developed in collaboration with Fiontar, DCU. The Linked Logainm dataset is of potential use to any person, project or institution aiming to make content relating to Irish places available on the Web. The publication of data in a structured, computer-readable format allows its value to be re-used by computer scientists, web developers, the heritage community and information professionals. The project document "Using the Linked Logainm Dataset" provides use-cases and examples for those who are interested in working with the Linked Logainm data, and who have some technical experience.

    The project also built the Location LODer website, an interactive map where visitors can explore Irish place names, linked with historical context and maps, images and contemporary data.

    Location LODer was constructed using linked data technologies by INSIGHT @ NUIGalway and DRI, and gives an interactive introduction to the potential of the Linked Logainm concept. Linked Logainm data and a Google maps interface allow users to explore content from a range of digital resources relating to locations across Ireland. Users interact with a map of Ireland, navigating by county to discover pins which highlight relevant content for towns, villages, cities, rivers and streets. Clicking on the pin loads the available digitised content for the place, which may be sourced from, Wikipedia, the National Library of Ireland’s Longfield Maps collection, the Irish Historic Towns Atlas and My Location LODer allows the user to gather interesting source material, and to email links to their bookmarked content to other users.

    Visit Location LODer and logainm.

    For more information about the Linked Logainm project partners please see:

    Digital Repository of Ireland -
    Digital Enterprise Research Institute (DERI) -
    Fiontar at Dublin City University -
    National Library of Ireland -
    Placenames Branch of the Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht -

    Please contact Rebecca Grant, the DRI Digital Archivist, for further information.


    Le heisiúint láithreach

    Tá tacar nua sonraí oscailte, trínar féidir logainmneacha na hÉireann a nascadh ar fud an domhain trí bhíthin teicneolaíochtaí ceannródaíocha a forbraíodh in Éirinn, seolta ag Jimmy Deenihan, TD, An tAire Ealaíon, Oidhreachta agus Gaeltachta.

    Sheol Jimmy Deenihan, TD, An tAire Ealaíon, Oidhreachta agus Gaeltachta an acmhainn Linked Logainm Dé Máirt, an 10 Meán Fómhair, i Leabharlann Náisiúnta na hÉireann.

    Is tionscadal comhoibríoch é Linked Logainm de chuid Taisclann Dhigiteach na hÉireann (DRI), INSIGHT @ NUIGalway (roimhe seo an Institiúid um Thaighde ar an bhFiontraíocht Dhigiteach DERI), Fiontar in Ollscoil Chathair Bhaile Átha Cliath, Leabharlann Náisiúnta na hÉireann agus an Brainse Logainmneacha sa Roinn Ealaíon, Oidhreachta agus Gaeltachta.

    Tá tacar nua sonraí oscailte curtha ar fáil ag tionscadal Linked Logainm, trínar féidir logainmneacha na hÉireann a nascadh ar fud an domhain trí bhíthin teicneolaíochtaí ceannródaíocha a forbraíodh in Éirinn.
    Dúirt an tAire Deenihan ag an seoladh:

    “Tréaslaím le comhpháirtithe an tionscadail – An Leabharlann Náisiúnta, Taisclann Dhigiteach na hÉireann, Fiontar ag Ollscoil Chathair Bhaile Átha Cliath, INSIGHT @ NUIGalway agus an Brainse Logainmneacha i mo Roinn féin, as an obair atá curtha isteach acu ar an tionscadal seo. Táim thar a bheith sásta an acmhainn digiteach seo a sheoladh. Cuirfidh sí le cur chun cinn ár sonraí logainmníochta mar acmhainn do thaighdeoirí, oideachasóirí, mic léinn, ginealaithe mar aon le hinstitiúidí oidhreachta, leabharlannaithe agus cartlannaithe, go náisiúnta agus go hidirnáisiúnta. Tá an tionscadal seo ina eiseamláir maidir le húsáid sonraí oscailte agus nasctha agus is iontach an eiseamláir é ar an dóigh ar féidir TFC nua-aimseartha a úsáid mar áis chun cúnamh, eolas agus oideachas a chur ar fáil chomh forleathan agus is féidir.”

    Acmhainn oscailte is ea an leagan Sonraí Nasctha den bhunachar sonraí dátheangach, údarásach de logainmneacha na hÉireann,, agus táthar ag súil go n-úsáidfidh forbróirí Gréasáin, eolaithe ríomhaireachta, taighdeoirí, an pobal oidhreachta, leabharlannaithe agus cartlannaithe go forleathan é amach anseo.

    Is bunachar sonraí ar líne é ina bhfuil breis is 100,000 ainm geografach de chuid na hÉireann. Is é an Brainse Logainmneacha sa Roinn Ealaíon, Oidhreachta agus Gaeltachta a shocraíonn na sonraí, agus cruthaíodh agus forbraítear an bunachar sonraí i gcomhar le Fiontar, Ollscoil Chathair Bhaile Átha Cliath.Beidh tacar sonraí Linked Logainm úsáideach d’aon duine, d’aon tionscadal nó d’aon institiúid a mbeadh suim acu ábhar faoi logainmneacha na hÉireann a chur ar fáil ar an nGréasán.Sa mhéid gur foilsíodh sonraí i bhformáid struchtúrtha, atá inléite ag an ríomhaire, féadfaidh ríomheolaithe, forbróirí Gréasáin, an pobal oidhreachta agus gairmithe faisnéise eile úsáid a bhaint as na sonraí sin. Sa doiciméad tionscadail “Ag Úsáid Thacar Sonraí Linked Logainm" cuirtear cásanna úsáide agus eiseamláirí ar fáil dóibh siúd a bhfuil taithí theicniúil éigin acu agus ar suim leo leas a bhaint as tacar sonraí Linked Logainm.

    Tá an suíomh Gréasáin Location LODer curtha ar fáil ag an tionscadal freisin, léarscáil idirghníomhach atá ann ar ar féidir le cuairteoirí logainmneacha na hÉireann a fhiosrú agus iad nasctha lena gcomhthéacs stairiúil, léarscáileanna, íomhánna agus sonraí comhaimseartha.

    Chruthaigh INSIGHT @ NUIGalway agus DRI Location LODer as teicneolaíochtaí sonraí nasctha, agus tugann sé réamheolas idirghníomhach maidir leis na féidearthachtaí a bhaineann le coincheap Linked Logainm. Cuirtear sonraí Linked Logainm i gcomhéadan le Google Maps ionas gur féidir le húsáideoirí amharc ar réimse acmhainní digiteacha a bhaineann le háiteanna éagsúla ar fud na hÉireann. Úsáideann cuairteoirí léarscáil idirghníomhach d’Éirinn chun dul ó chontae go contae agus aimsíonn siad pionnaí a nochtann faisnéis ábhartha maidir le bailte, sráidbhailte, cathracha, aibhneacha agus sráideanna. Ach cliceáil ar phionna lódáiltear an t-inneachar digitithe don áit sin, as, Vicipéid, bailiúchán Léarscáileanna Longfield de chuid Leabharlann Náisiúnta na hÉireann, Irish Historic Towns Atlas nó Is féidir le húsáideoirí My Location LODer a úsáid chun ábhar spéisiúil foinseach a bhailiú le chéile, agus naisc chuig an ábhar ar chuir siad leabharmharc leo a chur tríd an ríomhphost chuig úsáideoirí eile.

    Tabhair cuairt ar Location LODer ag agus ar ag

    Tuilleadh eolais faoi chomhpháirtithe Linked Logainm:

    Taisclann Dhigiteach na hÉireann (DRI) -
    An Institiúid um Thaighde ar an bhFiontraíocht Dhigiteach (DERI) -
    Fiontar, Ollscoil Chathair Bhaile Átha Cliath-
    Leabharlann Náisiúnta na hÉireann -
    An Brainse Logainmneacha sa Roinn Ealaíon, Oidhreachta agus Gaeltachta
    Tuilleadh eolais, déan teagmháil le Rebecca Grant, cartlannaí digiteach DRI.

    Survey on Impressions of Researchers

    Please take 5 minutes (max) to complete the Discover Research Dublin survey on general impressions about researchers. ONE SURVEY RESPONDENT WILL RECEIVE A €100 VOUCHER


    DRI launches second report

    We have just launched the second report in our Digital Repository of Ireland series. Titled Caring for Digital Content: Mapping International Approaches, the report is co-authored by Dr. Aileen O'Carroll (NUIM), Dr. Sandra Collins (RIA), Damien Gallagher (NUIM), Jimmy Tang (TCD), and Dr. Sharon Webb (NUIM).

    As with the first report in our series, Digital Archiving in Ireland: National Survey of the Humanities and Social Sciences, the research in our new report is informing the creation of our national trusted digital repository. We hope you find it as informative as we do. To download the report, visit our Publications Page.

    Getting Started in Digital Preservation - registration open!

    We're very pleased to be partnering again with the Digital Preservation Coalition to bring you 'Getting Started in Digital Preservation,' a one-day introduction to the major issues one should consider when undertaking a preservation project. This time, we are also partnering with the Health Sciences Library Group and the Academic and Special Libraries Section of the Library Association of Ireland. Registration is essential and spaces are limited for this Nov 1 event at the Royal Irish Academy. For more information, see the Event page.

    Two job vacancies with DRI @ TCD

    TCD is seeking applicants for two positions on the Digital Repository of Ireland project, a Digital Photographer, and a Metadata Cataloguer. Full job specifications have been posted on our Vacancies page. The application deadline for both positions is Tuesday September 10, 2013.

    DPC back in town: Save the date!

    DRI will be co-hosting an Ireland-specific workshop on 'Getting Started in Digital Preservation' with the Digital Preservation Coalition on Nov 1, 2013 at the Royal Irish Academy. Details to follow.

    Discover Research Dublin is one month away!

    DRI's joint undertaking between the Royal Irish Academy and Trinity College Dublin, Discover Research Dublin, is one month away! We have so many exciting events in the works, from the Journalist for a Night multi-part event at the Royal Irish Academy, to Tag -- You're It!, which extends the hit project A History of Ireland in 100 Objects in innovative ways, to the wide variety of events at Trinity College Dublin.

    The night is all about celebrating the range of activities and careers that fall under the umbrella of 'research,' and giving participants an interactive experience. The evening's events (Friday Sept 27, 6-11pm) are as stimulating for adults as they are engaging for young people. Try being a researcher for a night! For a full list of events, see the Discover Research Dublin website. And for the tweeters, everything will be here: #DiscoverResearch.

    DRI presentations on Slideshare

    We continue to upload slides from presentations by DRI staff and speakers at DRI events, in the effort share our continuing research in digital preservation, repository-building, digital curation, and partnership development.

    If you look to the top right of our website, you'll see that we've added a direct icon link to Slideshare.

    In the last month, we've uploaded:


    DRI confirms it will assign DOIs to its digital objects

     July 12th, 2013

    For Immediate Release

    The Digital Repository of Ireland confirms it will assign DOIs to its digital objects in partnership with DataCite at the British Library

    The Digital Repository of Ireland has selected DOIs (Digital Objects Identifiers) as persistent identifiers for its repository. DOIs for DRI will be minted with DataCite at the British Library, and assigned to every publicly accessible digital object which the repository holds.

    Persistent identifiers are unique, maintainable links to digital objects which provide continuous access to the object, even if it moves servers or moves to the responsibility of a different organisation. This persistence allows researchers and scholars to cite digital objects in their work, and ensures that these citations remain correct and accessible. Persistent identifiers facilitate easy dissemination and reuse of data, allow the use and impact of data to be tracked, and create a structure that recognises and rewards data producers. The provision of DOIs by the DRI will benefit both data depositors and the research community.

    DOIs are a well known, widely used persistent identifier system, currently implemented by major international repositories including the UK Data Archive, DANS, ARTstor and the World Health Organisation. By signing up with DataCite, the Digital Repository of Ireland will become the first Irish repository to assign DOIs to its digital objects.

    Dr Sandra Collins, Director of the Digital Repository of Ireland, welcomed this announcement, adding that “This is an important step for the DRI, and for Ireland. It is one of the key steps for Ireland to open up and share its publicly funded research data, allowing this data to be attributed and cited, giving credit to the researchers that produce discoverable, re-usable data and who takes steps to preserve this data for future use. We are delighted to partner with DataCite to achieve this goal.”

    Lee-Ann Coleman, member of the DataCite Board and Head of Science, Technology and Medicine at the British Library stated: “We are pleased to support the Digital Repository of Ireland in their mission to share and preserve publicly funded data. They will be joining a growing cadre of institutions in the UK, and across the world, recognising the importance of being able to discover, access and cite data and we warmly welcome their participation.”

    For more about the Digital Repository of Ireland see

    For more about DataCite see

    For more information about DRI minting DOIs please contact Rebecca Grant, the DRI Digital Archivist,

    CFP: Cyber-infrastructure & Metadata Protocols


    (Cyber-infrastructure & Metadata Protocols)

    Full-day Workshop: 6 September 2013 @ DC-2013 in Lisbon, Portugal

    Web announcement:

    A joint Dublin Core-Science and Metadata Community (DC-SAM) <> / Research Data Alliance (RDA) <> Metadata Interest Group workshop

    Metadata is vital to the discovery and management of scientific data. The Dublin Core-Science and Metadata Community (DC-SAM), Research Data Alliance (RDA), and related communities advocate for access to, and shared knowledge about, metadata standards that support data life-cycle management. CAMP-4-DATA participants will explore infrastructure design, applications, and policies that can advance the support of open, collective and sustainable access to metadata standards used for managing scientific data.


    Participation is open to 1.) workshop presenters, and 2.) general participants/viewers interested in attending the CAMP-4-DATA. Workshop registration is required.


    CAMP-4-DATA seeks contributions in three categories:

    1.) Short Papers (1 to 3 pages). A short paper cogently addressing CAMP-4-DATA goals. Papers may define current challenges, propose a solution, or report on research underway to advance efforts toward developing a collective and sustainable metadata directory.

    2.) Abstracts about metadata tools and technologies (200 words, maximum).
    An abstract summarizing a metadata application or technology that can address the CAMP-4-DATA goals. Metadata tools and technologies will be demonstrated during the workshop exhibition period.

    3.) Position Statements (250 word/1 page--maximum). A statement defining a specific infrastructure challenge or policy need that can be discussed during the CAMP-4-DATA breakout session. Policy statement authors will be expected to facilitate a discussion on their stated issue and report discussion results during the workshop synthesis session.


    * Submission Deadline: Friday, 12 July 2013
    * Author Notification: Friday, 26 July 2013
    * Final Copy: Friday, 9 August 2013


    Short Papers, Abstracts, and Position Statements will be peer reviewed by the Workshop Advisory Committee. At least one author from each accepted submission must be registered for the CAMP-4-Data Workshop on Friday, 6 September 2013 and in attendance for the duration of the Workshop.

    Prepare your submission using the document template available <

    >. Detailed formatting information is available at <>.

    Upload the submission file to the electronic submissions system <>.

    If you have any problems using the submissions system, you can email the chairs at <>.

    Submissions must be accompanied by the following submission metadata for each contributing author: (a) full name, (b) institution of professional affiliation, (c) preferred email address; and (d) home country. This author information will be made publicly available for all accepted submissions.


    Accepted Short Papers, Abstracts, and Position Statements will be published and made permanently and freely available on the conference website for DC-2013 at <>.

    Sincerely, CAMP-4-DATA DC-SAM and RDA Representatives,

    Jane Greenberg, Alex Ball, Keith Jeffery, Rebecca Koskela, & Jian Qin

    Full conference:  International Conference on Dublin Core and Metadata Applications, DC-2013, Lisbon, Portugal :

    DERI launches national survey on journalists’ use of social media




    Our collaborators at the Digital Research Enterprise Institute at NUI Galway have launched a national survey to determine the ways in which journalists use social media in their work.

    For immediate release
    July 2, 2013

    DERI launches national survey on journalists’ use of social media

    Social media has become a vital tool to the modern journalist. From Syria, to Turkey and Brazil international news stories are being broken by ordinary citizens on social media everyday and it’s not just serious news. The latest football transfer rumours or celebrity scandal is now more likely to break on Twitter than by conventional means. The emergence of this new technology is fundamentally changing the way journalists work and source stories.

    Despite the proliferation of social media particularly among journalists, until now, no formal study on Irish media professionals’ use of social media has been carried out. Researchers at the Digital Enterprise Research Institute (DERI) at NUI Galway have launched the first national survey on how Irish journalists use social media. This new study aims to measure the prevalence of social media use among professional journalists in Ireland, how often it is being used and for what purposes.

    The researchers are calling on all journalists working in print, TV, radio and online media to take just 10 minutes out of their busy schedules to fill out the online survey. “The ubiquity of social media is quickly changing the global media landscape, leading us to query Ireland’s contemporary journalistic practices,” said Dr. Bahareh Heravi, the project manager and leader of the Digital Humanities and Journalism group at DERI. “This survey will help to not only delineate these practices, but the data collected has the potential to ultimately result in more informed and accurate reporting,” she added.

    The project is being run by the newly formed Digital Humanities and Journalism group, at the Digital Enterprise Research Institute (DERI), which runs a number of projects exploring how new technologies are impacting the world of journalism and other digital humanities like archiving.

    DRI's Natalie Harrower, who is an associate member of the group, has written a blog post on the importance of the survey on the HuJo site

    The survey can be accessed here and more information on the research group can be found at

    Research Data Alliance comes to Dublin in 2014

    We are delighted to announce that DRI and INSIGHT have attracted the third plenary meeting of the Research Data Alliance (RDA) to Ireland, to be held in Dublin on March 26-28, 2014.

    RDA is an exciting new global organisation, backed by the EU Commission (Commissioner Neelie Kroes and DG-Connect), the National Science Foundation in the United States, and the Australian Government and National Data Services. The goal is to open up and share research data to enable discovery acceleration.

    Researchers in Academia and Industry, Funding Agencies, Libraries and publishers are invited to get involved, and I hope that hosting the event in Dublin in 2014 will be a great opportunity for Ireland to take a leadership position.

    The Irish side of the Organising Committee will be Digital Repository of Ireland and INSIGHT, the new SFI-funded National Data Analytics Research Centre. DRI's Dr. Sandra Collins is on the European Council for RDA and the Organising Committee for the event, and Dr. Natalie Harrower is the Local Conference Chair.

    Press Release:


    Australia, in close partnership with Ireland, will host the Third Plenary for the Research Data Alliance in Dublin, Ireland on March 26 to 28, 2014. The purpose of the Research Data Alliance is to accelerate international data-driven innovation and discovery by facilitating research data sharing and exchange, use and re-use, standards harmonization, and discoverability.

    The Third Plenary will build on the very successful First Plenary in March 2013 (led by RDA-Europe), and the firm planning underway for the Second Plenary in Washington DC in September 2013 (led by RDA-US).

    The Organising Committee for the Third Plenary consists of Dr Sandra Collins (Director, Digital Repository of Ireland), Professor Stefan Decker (INSIGHT: Ireland's National Data Analytics Research Centre), Dr Leif Laaksonen (RDA-Europe Project Director), Professor Alan Smeaton (INSIGHT: Ireland's National Data Analytics Research Centre) and Dr Andrew Treloar (Director of Technology, Australian National Data Service and Organising Committee Chair).

    The Research Data Alliance Council welcomes the continued momentum of the RDA Plenary event series and supports the Third Plenary organising group in its endeavours to date and forward into March 2014.

    For further information about the Research Data Alliance, please either visit or email

    Europeana funding cut #AllezCulture

    europeana logoThe 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.

    Researcher's Night: Discover Research

    Save the date of Sept 27!!

    DRI and RIA partnered with Trinity College Dublin on an European bid to host Researcher's Night in Dublin on Sept. 27, 2013. Our bid, called "Discover Research", was successful, and we will be hosting an exciting night of events across Dublin city, as countries across Europe do the same on the same evening. Not unlike the wildly popular Culture Night, Discover Research will see a variety of events across the city that focus on the work of researchers. The evening is interactive and participants can move from one engaging event to the next, learning about astronomy, history, digital journalism, and much more! For more information, see the event website:, or follow updates on Twitter:

    #DPTrust Conversation posted

    Missed yesterday's event? Want to find that reference or URL a speaker mentioned? Visit the Twitter conversation for the Trust and Digital Preservation training event -- #DPTrust.

    Job Vacancy: Digital Imaging Archivist, NCAD/DRI

    We have a vacancy for a Digital Imaging Archivist work on at NCAD on the the DRI demonstrator project. See Vacancies.

    Around the World Symposium this Thursday

    DRI's Dr. Sandra Collins is speaking during the Around the World Symposium this Thursday, May 30, as part of the DH@TCD and DARIAH-IE panel at the Trinity Long Room Hub, 2pm-4pm.

    The Symposium is based on a novel concept: hold events in rotation in countries across the world, capture, and live stream them for a 24-hour long event. Hosted by the Kule Institute for Advanced Studies at the University of Alberta, the event features 9 locations and the stream will be preserved for later access.

    The Long Room Hub's part of the event is free to attend, but seating is limited.

    For more information, see:

    Follow on Twitter at #UofAWorld


    Twitter response to the event now online at

    The tweets significantly enrich the event by providing links to organisations, statements and projects mentioned by the speakers, and raising questions about aspects of the presentations.

    Slides that accompanied talks by Prof. Laurent Romary and Dr. Sandra Collins also now online at

    Older news:
    Bios have now been added to our Open Access to Humanities Data event on May 7, 2013, at 5:30pm in the Royal Irish Academy. RSVP required for this free event:  Hashtag is #OAdata

    EDF2013 curated conversation

    DERI and DRI have created a curated and narrated version of the social media conversation that occurred at EDF2013, the European Data Forum conference held at Croke Park on April 9-10, 2013. The conversation is lively and photo-rich, and acts as a record of the various aspects of the event: EDF has also released a video of the conference, including interviews and impressions. It is available on YouTube:

    National Principles for Open Access

    The National Principles for Open Access policy statement, of which the DRI were contributors via the National Steering Committee on Open Access Policy, was launched in October by Minister Sean Sherlock, TD, at our Realising the Opportunities of Digital Humanities conference. The report has been on our website since that point but we've been told it was hard to find, so we've now given it a more prominent place on our Publications page.

    Dr. Sandra Collins on RTE news

    Watch Sandra on RTÉ news (at 1:44 min), speaking about the need for trusted digital preservation at the EDF2013 conference at Croke Park, Tuesday April 9, 2013:

    Silicon Republic article about DRI collaboration with RTE

    Silicon Republic has published an article about the multi-institute collaboration between RTE, DERI and DRI, under the auspices of the new mega research centre INSIGHT: RTÉ to employ semantic web and big data to preserve Ireland’s memories

    Also see the official press release about the collaboration, published 9 April, 2013 at the EDF2013 conference.

    DRI collaborating with RTE and DERI in semantic content discovery platform

    Summary: RTÉ Archives announce an ambitious collaboration with the newly announced SFI “Big Data” Research Centre called INSIGHT and the Digital Repository of Ireland (DRI), which will be carried out in DERI (NUI Galway) at INSIGHT, to develop an innovative semantic content discovery platform to open up the treasures of the RTÉ Archives.



    From L-R: Prof. Mark Ferguson, Brid Dooley, Prof. Stefan Decker, Dr. Sandra Collins, Minister Alan Shatter, TD


    Tuesday, 9 April, 2013: At the 2013 European Data Forum in Dublin, Head of RTÉ Archives Bríd Dooley, together with Professor Stefan Decker (INSIGHT and Director of the Digital Enterprise Research Institute at NUI Galway), and Dr Sandra Collins, Director of the Digital Repository of Ireland, announced an ambitious, ground-breaking collaboration to develop an innovative cross-archival semantic content discovery platform as part of the new SFI INSIGHT data analytics centre, a joint initiative between UCD, NUI Galway, UCC and DCU.


    Opening the event, Alan Shatter TD, Minister for Justice, Equality and Defence, said: “A key part of the Irish Government’s plan for growth and jobs is identifying areas where we believe Ireland can compete and win on the global stage.”

    Minister Shatter added: “One such sector where our ambition is to be amongst the world’s best is in ‘Big Data’ and its analytics. The Irish Government believes that given our climate, educational and skills base and our existing major strengths in ICT, we can benefit significantly in terms of quality jobs and growth from the global expansion of this sector.”

    “Analysing this explosion of data will revolutionise industries such as manufacturing and pharmaceutical production to further develop Europe's data economy and create good sustainable jobs in Ireland.”

    Minister Shatter also spoke of the “need for a coherent and practical set of Data Protection rules at National and European Union levels”. Referring to the “new, and increasingly common, risks for privacy” that arise from technological advances, he emphasised the importance of ensuring “that Data Protection standards keep pace with the emerging technologies and new business models”. Progressing the new EU Data Protection regulation and securing agreement on its content he stated is “a priority of the Irish Presidency of the European Union.”

    Minister Shatter concluded by saying: “Importantly, Big Data will have a huge societal impact with projects such as that proposed by the new Insight research centre in partnership with RTÉ Digital to explore the RTÉ archives, and open up avenues to investigate our cultural, historical, sporting and linguistic heritage and provide us with deep insights into what it means to be Irish.”

    Speaking during the Opening Session of EDF2013, Professor Mark Ferguson, Director General of Science Foundation Ireland, said: “The Big Data sector is growing by 40% annually and as a nation we must ensure that we are developing the specialised skills needed to remain globally competitive. INSIGHT is a new national research centre in the field of data analytics that brings together the leading players from academia and industry in Ireland. This new SFI Research Centre will undertake research and develop new technologies that will attract dynamic partnerships with industry, further leverage investment for Europe, and ultimately help create high value jobs in Ireland and deliver economic and societal impact.”

    Big Data is a global challenge that asks us to turn vast quantities of ubiquitous raw data into knowledge that will inform people and improve society, business, and health. The Irish Government, under the stewardship of Science Foundation Ireland, is making a major investment in Insight, the mega research centre that will use world-class data analytics to address Big Data. Minister Bruton, TD and Minister Sherlock, TD, announced this ground-breaking initiative in February 2013.

    RTÉ is a partner in the INSIGHT research centre, and Bríd Dooley will work with Professor Stefan Decker (INSIGHT) and Dr Sandra Collins (Royal Irish Academy) to bring together the skills and experience of the internationally recognised semantic web and linked data centre and the national trusted digital repository, with the rich essence and curation skills of RTÉ, to open up the wealth of treasures in the RTÉ Archives.

    Commenting on the project, Bríd Dooley, Head of RTÉ Archives, a division of RTÉ Digital, said: “Our key priorities at RTÉ Digital are to meet the needs of audiences now and in the future through innovation and technology, and by playing an active role within the Digital Economy. As RTÉ Archives is a national resource and a hugely valuable asset to the public, we cannot underestimate the significance of this partnership with the INSIGHT Centre and the Digital Repository of Ireland. Our vision is to enable RTÉ to further step-change its ability to meet audience needs and to provide a much richer discovery, analysis and access gateway to this culturally and historically important material through digital means.”

    Dr Sandra Collins added: “This is a very important collaboration for the Digital Repository of Ireland. Preservation and access to our nation’s cultural and social heritage is our mission, and a critical part of this is the technology solutions to discover archival content – the essence that informs the narrative. In the age of Big Data, discovering the content, information and knowledge you want requires cross-disciplinary research, and partnering with RTÉ and INSIGHT is a wonderful opportunity to advance the state of the art.”

    Professor Stefan Decker, also speaking at the conference, added that: “Linked data technologies are enabling the liberation of value out of archives. We are excited to do this research with RTÉ, transitioning the technologies into practise and contributing to society.”


    Click here for full details of SFI Research Centres announcement on 25 February 2013.

    For further detail contact:

    Dr Natalie Harrower, Digital Repository of Ireland,


    Caroline Stephens, RTÉ Digital Communications Manager @rtedigital, 086 8422151


    Ruth Hynes, Press & Information Executive , NUI Galway,,  091 495695

    EDF2013 Conversation page

    Throughout EDF2013, the conference on big data that runs Tues April 9 - Wed April 10 at Croke Park, Dublin, we'll be partnering with DERI to curate the social media conversation surrounding the event, and live updating on this page:

    With 350 participants and a wealth of international speakers, it is sure to be a lively exchange. Please feel free to join the conversation by using the hashtag #EDF_13   If you're not able to attend the event, you can participate by watching the live stream at: Full conference details are available on the EDF2013 website.

    Inishowen Song Project

    The Irish Traditional Music Archive and Inishowen Traditional Singers' Circle have launched the Inishowen Song Project.

    This is a unique 2,000-item online microsite presenting the traditional singers and songs of the Inishowen peninsula, Co Donegal, and incorporating digital sound and video recordings, books, photographs, transcriptions of song texts, and metadata catalogue information for each item.

    It is a collaborative project between the Irish Traditional Music Archive and the Inishowen Traditional Singers’ Circle and was funded by Inishowen Development Partnership to provide free and open access to field recordings made in the peninsula during the 1980s – 1990s. 

    ALLEA symposium

    ALLEA header



    The Digital Repository of Ireland is honoured to be organising ALLEA's Scientific Symposium on the Management of Large Data Corpora, in Berlin on 29th April, 2013. ALLEA, the federation of All European Academies, brings together 52 Academies in more than 40 countries from the Council of Europe region. Drawing on the rich intellectual and historical resources of its member academies, ALLEA's policy work aims to address structural and policy issues facing Europe in science, research, and innovation, and to improve the framework under which science and scholarship can excel.

    DRI's Director, Dr. Sandra Collins, was recently appointed Chair of the ALLEA working group on E-Humanities, which provides the focus for this year's Symposium. Panels in the Symposium will be addressing issues such as digital preservation and trusted archives, scholarly work and open access, and research infrastructures. The programme features experts in digital humanities and digital preservation and access from across Europe, and is being opened by Germany's Minister of Education and Research, Professor Johanna Wanka, and the EU's Deputy Director General for Communications Networks, Content and Technology, Dr. Zoran Stancic.

    For more information on ALLEA, visit their website:

    Storyscope launches Vimeo channel

    Storyscope, the storytelling platform developed by our partners at Decipher, has launched a Vimeo channel to explore responses to the software's trials over the coming months. Originally developed as a digital curation tool for museum professionals, the potential uses of Storyscope are rapidly expanding, and the interviews/demonstrations in the trials reflect this continued growth. Visit Storyscope's Vimeo Channel for more information.

    HydraCamp registration starting to fill up. Book your place now:

    DPC Trust Event at DRI: update

    June 4-5, 2013 at the Royal Irish Academy

    This two-day training event, from the APARSEN project in partnership with the Digital Repository of Ireland, will focus on the topic of ‘Trust’ in relation to the preservation of digital objects. Long established as a key issue for those in engaged in digital preservation, this event will aim to provide attendees with a deeper understanding of the topic and provide them with practical guidance on how they might manage trust within their own repository.

    The first day, presented in a workshop format, will include presentations from the APARSEN project on its work on the audit and certification of repositories, and the capture and maintenance of authenticity and provenance information for digital objects. Presentations will also be made by a number of guest speakers, including staff from the DRI, and will include a discussion of issues surrounding trust for those engaged in data sharing and reuse. Attendees will also be encouraged to actively participate in a panel discussion on the topics covered.

    The second day of the event will delve deeper into the issues of certification and authenticity and provenance, providing a half day of practically focused training on each. This training will include detailed presentations of APARSEN work, case studies and practical exercises.

    Research Data Alliance

    We're very excited to be involved in the international, much-needed Research Data Alliance (RDA), which has been created to address the need for global data infrastructure coordination. Much like the IETA, but focused on sharing and exchanging data, RDA will help to "accelerate data-driven innovation." More here:



    Dr. Sandra Collins appointed Chair of ALLEA task force

    Dr Sandra Collins has been appointed Chair of the ALLEA (All European Academies) International E-Humanities Task Force.

    ALLEA, the federation of All European Academies, was founded in 1994 and currently brings together 52 Academies in more than 40 countries from the Council of Europe region. Member Academies operate as learned societies, think tanks and research performing organisations. They are self- governing communities of leaders of scholarly enquiry across all fields of the natural sciences, the social sciences and the humanities. ALLEA therefore provides access to an unparalleled human resource of intellectual excellence, experience and expertise.

    Independent from political, commercial and ideological interests, ALLEA’s policy work seeks to contribute to improving the framework conditions under which science and scholarship can excel. Jointly with its Member Academies, ALLEA is in a position to address the full range of structural and policy issues facing Europe in science, research and innovation. In doing so, it is guided by a common understanding of Europe bound together by historical, social and political factors as well as for scientific and economic reasons.

    Prof. Stock, the President of ALLEA, inaugurated the new E-Humanities Task Force in November 2012 in Berlin, and Dr. Collins was appointed as Chair.

    The Task Force is charged with identifying and raising awareness for priorities and concerns of the E-Humanities, and contributing to the Open Access agenda from a Humanities and Social Sciences perspective, and building consensus for common standards and best practices in E-Humanities.

    The next face-to-face meeting of the Task Force will be held in the Royal Irish Academy in May 2013.

    Job vacancy at Abbey Theatre

    The Abbey Theatre has posted a job for a Project Archivist to work with the Abbey Theatre digitisation project. This is a unique opportunity to work on The Abbey Theatre / NUI Galway partnership to digitise the archival holdings of the Abbey Theatre and on other projects. The Project Archivist will work closely with the Abbey Theatre Archivist on the digitisation project and will work within the work-plan prepared by the Abbey Theatre Archivist. Deadline: 12pm on Friday 22nd March 2013. Details: Abbey Theatre Job Posting

    DRI a partner in new SFI centre

    On 25th February 2013, the Irish government announced the largest ever state/industry co-funded research investment in Ireland: €200m of new Exchequer funds for 7 World Class Research Centres (and an additional €100m co-investment by industry partners). The Digital Repository of Ireland at the Royal Irish Academy is a partner in the largest of these centres, the SFI-funded Insight Research Centre.

    "We are very pleased to be a partner in this exciting new mega research centre," said Dr. Sandra Collins, Director of the Digital Repository of Ireland. "Insight brings together the leading national ‘Big Data’ research centres, enabling a unique offering of end-to-end, holistic approaches to data, which will firmly place Ireland on the international stage in this global research priority area. DRI’s participation is in the area of content discovery for archives of cultural and social data - AV, sound, text and images that form part of our national identity”.

    Big Data is much like it sounds - massive data sets from all aspects of our information society. Big data poses a challenge to society because its sheer size means that it cannot generally be processed with common software tools. Examples include everything from the world's Twitter stream (well over 200 million tweets per day) to the Large Hadron Collider, which has 150 million sensors delivering data 40 million times per second, resulting in a yearly data output that would fit on 20 kilometres of CDs piled into the sky. But at the same time that it poses a challenge to technologists, it also provides a wealth of possibilities: properly collected, filtered, preserved and analysed, it is a rich resource for understanding and improving the way our world works. (See Big Data Loses its Shackles).



    INSIGHT: Ireland’s Big Data and Analytics Research Centre

    Lead Principal Investigators:

    · Dr Brian Caulfield, TRIL Centre Director, UCD

    · Professor Padraig Cunningham, Professor (Director Clique), UCD

    · Professor Stefan Decker, Professor for Digital Enterprise, Director of DERI, NUIG

    · Professor Barry O’Sullivan, Professor (Chair of Constraint Programming) and Director of 4C, UCC

    · Professor Alan Smeaton, Professor of Computing, DCU

    · Professor Barry Smyth, DIGITAL Chair of Computer Science / CLARITY Director, UCD

    Partner Institutions include: UCD, UCC, NUIG, DCU, BDI (DCU), CSO Cork, National Library of Ireland, Digital Repository of Ireland at the Royal Irish Academy.

    Number of Industry Partners: 45​​

    Research Summary: The commoditization of connectivity and content through the Internet has highlighted how always-on data services can transform almost every aspect of our lives. As we enter the age of “Big Data”, we will witness an unprecedented shift in the quantity and quality of information from all aspects of our lives. This will provide an unlimited source of raw material for a new generation of transformative knowledge-based industries, from new visions of healthcare to novel location-based and discovery based services. The ability to mine insights from these data is a new basis for sustained advantage in an increasingly competitive global marketplace. INSIGHT integrates four world-class research centres to position Ireland at the heart of data analytics research and develop a scalable and sustainable eco-system for education, investment, and industry in this crucial technology sector. INSIGHT will develop breakthrough data analytics technologies to deal with the volume, variety and velocity challenges of Big Data helping individuals, communities, organisations and societies to make better decisions: better decisions about where we might live; better decisions about the food we eat and the exercise we should take; better decisions by our governments when it comes to investing in education, energy, food, healthcare and infrastructure. Funded by the Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation and Science Foundation Ireland.

    More information: Science Foundation Ireland (SFI) Press Release

    Job vacancy at NUIM

    Two postdoctoral researchers are being recruited to work on the Programmable City project with Rob Kitchin at the National Institute for Regional and Spacial Analysis (NIRSA) at NUI Maynooth:

    As a result of a European Research Council Advanced Investigator Award to Prof. Rob Kitchin, we are seeking two postdoctoral researchers and four doctoral students to work on the Programmable City project. The project will be based in the National Institute for Regional and Spatial Analysis (NIRSA) at the National University of Ireland, Maynooth. The project will run over 5 years and be staffed by 4 postdocs and 4 PhD students.  The project focuses on the intersection of smart urbanism, ubiquitous computing and big data from a software studies/critical geography perspective, comparing Dublin and Boston and other locales.

    Further details on the project and the positions can be found via the links below.

    Postdoctoral Researchers x 2 Posts
    Closing date for applications *22nd March 2013*
    Further details available here

    Funded PhDs x 4 Posts
    Closing date for applications *12th April 2013*
    Further details available here

    Queries about the posts should be directed to Rob Kitchin

    Storyscope Software Trials

    Our partners at Decipher have started trialing their curation platform software Storyscope, and a lot of excitement is being generated around the growing number of possible uses for the storytelling platform. You can read about the Storyscope trials here. For more information on a previous application of Storyscope, see the press release about DRI and Decipher's Hackathon win, which combined Storyscope with the Europeana API to deliver a narrative about Irish soldiers and nurses on the Western Front of the Great War.

    DRI to present at DH2013

    We are pleased to announce that DRI will be represented at the annual international Digital Humanities conference, DH2013, taking place 16-19 July 2013 at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Dr. Sharon Webb (DRI's Requirements Analyst at An Foras Feasa, NUI Maynooth) and Dr. John G. Keating (Associate Director of An Foras Feasa and NUIM's Principal Investigator for DRI) were accepted to present their paper, "User ethnographies: informing requirements specifications for Ireland’s, national, trusted digital repository", at the annual event, organised and hosted this year by the Center for Digital Researching in the Humanities at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Details of the conference can be found here.

    EDF2013 to give award for data innovation:

    In order to recognize outstanding enterprises and individuals, who have shown extraordinary vision and execution in the field of linked enterprise data management for their use of linked (open) data to start more efficient data management, EDF2013 is delighted to launch the European Data Innovator Award. The 2013 European Data Innovator award was made possible by eccenca, a spin-off of Brox IT Solutions and AKSW Research group from University of Leipzig, Germany. The award will be presented at the European Data Forum 2013 on the first conference day in the course of the morning session - and will be handed over by representatives of the European Commission and the Irish Government together with Hans Christian Brockmann of eccenta. The DRI is helping to organise EDF2013, and has invited speakers to present on the topic of audio-visual big data.

    DRI wins DPTP Scholarship

    We are pleased to announce that the DRI's Educational Technologist, Dr. Natalie Harrower, is the recipient of a scholarship from the Digital Preservation Coalition (DPC) to attend the top-notch Digital Preservation Training Programme (DPTP) at the University of London Computer Centre (ULCC). The DPTP combines organisational and technological perspectives on digital preservation for institutions, and is widely acknowledged as one of the best training programmes available for information management professionals.

    Here is the full press release from the DPC:

    - - - - - - - - - - -

    Feb 27, 2013:

    The Digital Preservation Coalition (DPC) is delighted to announce that it has awarded eight scholarships so that members can attend the Digital Preservation Training Programme in London at the start of March.

    'These scholarships are very popular.  Specialist training is hard to find and staff development budgets are being tightly squeezed’, explained Richard Ovenden, Chair of the DPC. ‘We received a record number of applications this round, so we decided that we should try to respond to our members’ need by offering the largest numbers of scholarships so far.  It’s a measure of our commitment to the workforce and it will have an impact across a wide range of institutions.’

    The following were selected by a small panel of judges which met to review the applications submitted:

    • Sarah Arnold (University of Portsmouth)
    • Tom Ensom (UK Data Archive)
    • Katie Green (Archaeoloy Data Service)
    • Natalie Harrower (Digital Repository of Ireland)
    • Jenny Hunt (National Records of Scotland)
    • Adele Redhead (HATII, University of Glasgow)
    • Kevin Roberts (Archives and Records Association)
    • Rocio Von Jungenfeld (University of Edinburgh)

    Applicants were assessed against three main criteria: the role that DPTP would play in career development; the benefits to their organisation from attendance and the extent to which the applicant's job profile within the organisation pertains to digital preservation. Applications were open to DPC members and associates.
    William Kilbride, Executive Director of the DPC reflected on the scheme: 'Specialised skills in digital preservation is a clear strategic priority for organisations that depend on long-lasting data to stay in business or which generate, collect and manage large volumes of data, but it's also time consuming and expensive to produce. By guaranteeing a number of places on training courses like DPTP we reduce the risk that the organisers run. So, although we're not able to fund all the excellent applications we receive, we can still help ensure that the training is offered.'

    The Digital Preservation Training Programme (DPTP) is designed for all those working in institutional information management who are grappling with fundamental issues of digital preservation. It provides the skills and knowledge necessary for institutions to combine organisational and technological perspectives, and devise an appropriate response to the challenges that digital preservation needs present. DPTP is operated and organised by the University of London Computer Centre in collaboration with the DPC.

    The Digital Preservation Coalition (DPC) is a not-for profit membership organisation whose primary objective is to raise awareness of the importance of the preservation of digital material and the attendant strategic, cultural and technological issues. It acts as an enabling and agenda-setting body within the digital preservation world and works to meet this objective through a number of high level goals. Its vision is to make our digital memory accessible tomorrow.

    Original Link:

    - - - - - - - - - - - - -


    Our new page

    We've created a page in order to collect interesting news items, published reports, calls for papers, etc. Too often we post great links to Twitter, only for them to be lost, in a sense, to the rapidly growing list of tweets. This way, we can come back to the great content we're finding on the web, and hope you will too. Please check out, follow, comment on, or just enjoy our page.

    DRI blogs for Europeana

    We have a guest blog by Natalie Harrower on Europeana pro today, which talks about the work we did with Decipher in October, connecting the Storyscope platform to the Europeana API. You can read it here:

    DRI joins DPC

    We are delighted to announce that we've become a member of the Digital Preservation Coalition (DPC). The DPC is a not-for-profit membership organisation that advocates for digital preservation, with a vision towards making our digital memory accessible in the future. The DRI is hosting a two day workshop by the DPC and the APARSEN project at the Royal Irish Academy, June 4-5th, 2013. Details coming soon.

    Today's Press Release from the DPC:

    The Digital Preservation Coalition is delighted to welcome the Digital Repository of Ireland as its newest member.

    "The Digital Repository of Ireland is building an interactive and trusted national digital repository," explained Dr. Sandra Collins, Director of the DRI. "The repository will feature social and cultural data held by Irish institutions, from both contemporary and historical sources. We are working to raise awareness of the need for digital preservation and the benefits of open access, while respecting and acknowledging ownership, copyright, intellectual property rights, privacy and confidentiality."
    "Joining the DPC means we can strengthen our relationships with others working in the field, work together in advocacy and awareness-raising, and participate in training and projects that help to build capacity in our sector."
    William Kilbride of the Coalition, welcomed DRI.  ''We are delighted that they have decided to join us. Their membership will strengthen their work by giving them priority access to staff development, knowledge exchange and other leaders in the field. But it will also strengthen the Coalition. In a relatively short time, DRI has established itself as a leader in the field with an ambitious mandate and a dynamic and impressive mix of staff and expertise.  Moreover, the way that DRI is structured means that we will be able to engage with a wider range of stakeholders in Ireland than we’ve done before."



    Prof Rob Kitchin wins prestigious grant

    Professor Rob Kitchin (NUIM), a member of DRI's Management Board, has been awarded a €2.3m grant by the European Research Council (ERC) for his project 'The Programmable City', which will analyse how technology influences how we live, work and operate in cities. He will be recruiting a team of post-doctoral reasearchers and PhD students to use the cities of Dublin and Boston as case studies. The ERC awarded €680 million to 302 researchers in Europe through its latest Advanced Grant competition.

    Prof. Kitchin  was interviewed on RTE's Morning Ireland today, and the award was covered by The Irish times, The Journal, and Silicon Republic, among others.

    For more information about the project, read Rob's blog or follow him on Twitter .

    EDF 2013

    The DRI is helping to organise the next European Data Forum conference (EDF2013), which will be held at Croke Park on the 9th-10th of April, 2013. The topic is Big Data. See the press release for more information.

    DRI joins DECIPHER

    We are excited to announce that the DRI, under the auspices of The Royal Irish Academy, became a partner in the FP7 project Decipher. The Decipher project is a three-year, €4.3 million Specific Targeted Research Project (STREP) supported by the European Commission. It aims to support the discovery and exploration of cultural heritage through story and narrative. Decipher is developing new solutions to the whole range of narrative construction, knowledge visualisation and display problems for museums. This month, we appointed James Wogan as the Dissemination and Exploitation Manager on the project.



    Job Vacancy for a DECIPHER Project Assistant at the National Gallery of Ireland. Fixed term (1 year) contract. The closing date for receipt of completed applications is: Friday 25th January 2013 at 4pm. Details:

    Happy New Year from everyone at the DRI

    Welcome to 2013!

    DRI partner at NUIG bequeathed Éamoin de Buitléar archive

    DRI's partner an tAcadamh at NUIG Galway has been bequeathed the important personal archives of Éamon de Buitléar, and will undertaken a significant digitisation project. The Eamon de Buitléar  programmes are an integral part of RTÉ Television history and the RTÉ Archives manages a collection of over 300 titles, preserving and cataloguing the  film materials produced and broadcast  by RTÉ from 1967 onwards.  RTE has agreed to work in partnership  with NUIG  given the synergies with the collections involved.  The de Buitléar archive consists of film, audiotape, photographs, correspondence, files and audiovisual equipment, spread over approximately 10 boxes of paper based material, 2000 audio-tapes, 100 Digital Audio Tapes 500 beta-video tapes, 100 cans of film. NUI Galway will digitise, catalogue, preserve and enable access to the archive through a partnership between Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge and the James Hardiman Library. It is expected that the project will take two years. The digital archive will be accessible at the new Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences Research Building adjoining the James Hardiman Library on the main NUI Galway campus and at an tAcadamh’s Gaeltacht centres: Carna, Gaoth Dobhair, an Cheathrú Rua. The original materials will be stored and accessible via the Library. The DRI looks forward to working with NUI Galway in realizing the enormous potential of this fascinating collection.

    As noted in their press release, "Playing a key role in the Digital Repository of Ireland, the University is uniquely positioned to exploit the archive material and place it in a framework which will facilitate scholarly access and public engagement while working with partners such as RTÉ Archives to develop common protocols and best practice in the conservation of & public access to the national audio-visual heritage."

      About the Archive:

    The Éamon de Buitléar Archive is an exceptional and unique collection of multimedia material which reflects an outstanding body of work spanning some sixty years. The Archive consists of various media including papers, scripts and manuscripts, animation, film and video, music and audio recordings, books and broadcast equipment. The primary themes of the collection are film-making, the environment, traditional music and material relating to the de Buitléar family. Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge and the James Hardiman Library will digitise and manage the archive to facilitate access by researchers, students and the Gaeltacht community in the National University of Ireland, Galway.

    Further information


    Maidir leis an gCartlann:

    Mórchnuasach neamhchoitianta é cartlann Éamoin de Buitléar d’ábhar ilmheáin a léiríonn saothar ildánach le trí scór bliain anuas. Tá láimhscríbhinní, scannáin agus ábhar físe den uile chineál, cartlann de théipeanna fuaime agus ceoil, scripteanna, trealamh craolacháin agus leabhair i measc na meán éagsúil sa chnuasach eisceachtúil seo. Cuimsítear téamaí a bhaineann leis an gcraoltóireacht, an timpeallacht, ár gceol dúchais agus ábhar a bhaineann le teaghlach agus comhluadar Éamoin sa bhailiúchán. Déanfaidh Leabharlann Shéamais Uí Ardagáin agus Acadamh na hOllscolaíochta Gaeilge an chartlann a dhigitiú agus a bhainistiú in Ollscoil na hÉireann, Gaillimh, le go mbeadh teacht ag scoláirí, mic léinn agus pobal na Gaeltachta ar an ábhar.

    Tuilleadh Eolais

    Archives & Records Association welcomes DRI report

    The ARA has welcomed the DRI Report on Digital Archiving in Ireland, calling it "essential reading for archivists, records managers and those with an interest in archives." Read the full posting on the ARA website.

    Media Mashup: Videos, Slides & More RODH2012

    Followup info from Realising the Opportunities of Digital Humanities now available in our Media Mashup

    NeDimah/DARIAH Workshop

    New Methods/New Perspectives on Humanities Scholarship: A NeDimah/DARIAH Workshop

    Tuesday 27 November 2012, 9.00am-3.00pm

    Trinity Long Room Hub, Dublin, Ireland

    For registration see

    Digital technologies have opened up a wealth of methodologies that can augment and enhance more traditional research practice, allowing new ways to engage with the ever-growing web of digital data. This one-day workshop hosted by NeDIMAH with support from DARIAH will provide an introduction to these methods

    NeDiMAH (Network for Digital Methods in the Arts and Humanities) is an ESF-funded network investigating the use and impact of digital methods on arts and humanities research in Europe. As part of the network's ongoing work, Trinity College’s Long Room Hub will be the venue for a free one-day symposium to analyse and evaluate the methods thus far developed within the network, and identify ways in which it can further assist scholarly research being carried out in the Digital Arts and Humanities.

    This workshop will focus on the core areas which NeDIMAH has been investigating: space and time; information visualisation; linked data and ontological methods; building and developing collections for digital data for research; using large-scale text collections for research; digital scholarly editions; and  the impact of digital methods on scholarly publishing.

    We invite digital humanists at all different career levels, from MPhil students to advanced researchers, to join us for this event.  Your experience and feedback is vital to the ongoing work of NeDIMAH and DARIAH.

    The event is free but registration is required at

    For further information about NeDimah see; about DARIAH see; and on DH@TCD see

    Vicky Garnett


    John Bradley to deliver seminar at AFF Digital Humanities Research Seminar

    An Foras Feasas has announced that John Bradley, King's College London, will deliver the AFF Digital Humanities Research Seminar at NUI Maynooth on Wednesday 21 November at 3pm. The title of the seminar is 'Being Englebartian? Thoughts on Digital Tools for Humanists.' 

    John Bradley is a Senior Analyst for Humanities Computing at King's College London. He began working in the Centre for Computing in the Humanities at King's in March, 1997, and worked previously in the Information Commons at the University of Toronto. John has a particular interest in Humanities Computing and is enjoying focusing on this field in his current position. Within the Humanities computing field John's particular interests and responsibilities include:

    •    Text Markup and Analysis Tools

    •    Web based Electronic Publishing

    •    Humanities applications for Databases

    The Seminar will take place in the AFF Boardroom (1.26, Iontas Building). All are very welcome to attend.

    Hack4Europe! Winning App


    In September 2012, the DRI  team at the Hack4Europe! hackathon won the award for "Application with Greatest Social Impact".

    The hackathon was organised by Europeana to encourage teams to use their newly released API to exploit the Europeana content. After two days of hacking away at the vast collections on Europeana, the Digital Repository of Ireland hackathon team won the award for "Application with the Greatest Social Impact" for their WWI project Ireland on the Western Front. The teams were judged by an international panel of experts, and the award was presented by Jimmy Deenihan, TD, Minster for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, at a reception in the Science Gallery at TCD.

    L-R: Paula McGloin (DIT), Damien Gallagher (NUIM), Cormac Farrell (DIT), Sandra Collins (DRI), Jan Molendijk (Europeana), Natalie Harrower (RIA), Jimmy Deenihan, TD, Jimmy Tang (TCD), James Wogan (DIT), Mark Maguire (IMMA)


    Ireland on the Western Front is an application that allows users to combine digitised versions of personal/familial objects (e.g. war medals, old photographs, birth certificates) with digital objects from Europeana's collections (e.g. maps, war proclamations, artistic representations) in order to create an individualised narrative about the Great War. The created 'storyscope' paints a picture of a fragment in time - a linked virtual scrapbook of sorts - drawing on anything from a soldier's movements through the trenches of the Somme, to the larger social and political events of the time period. In short, it enables users to become private digital curators.

    Focusing on the last month of the war, the DRI team was able to trace the lives of several individuals from varied backgrounds who were all in the Somme region on October 4, 1918. Over the two day hackathon, the team demonstrated the brief intersection in time and space of a young lieutenant from the Royal Munster Fusiliers, a private from the Royal Enniskillen Fusiliers, a war nurse from Co. Down, and a German soldier who took extensive photographs of the battlefields. The technological innovation was to combine a visual online story space based on previous work from the DECIPHER team at the Digital Media Centre, DIT, with Europeana's search API. As a result, users can search Europeana directly through Storyscope, based on a wide variety of search terms. As presented to the judges, the team sees this project as a way to connect usesr from different cultural backgrounds through the lens of WWI experiences -- a 'common ground' that once proved so divisive for these users' ancestors.

    Our partners at DECIPHER have posted a screencast walkthrough of the concept:



    Hack4Europe! 2012 Dublin was organised by The Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, the Irish Manuscripts Commission, the Digital Humanities Observatory and Fáilte Ireland in conjunction with the Europeana Foundation. The DRI would like to thank these partners for their work in producing such an exciting and well-organised event.

    The DRI team included Eoin Kilfeather and Evin McCarthy from DIT, with the following hackers on the ground: Cormac Farrell (DIT), Dermot Frost (TCD) Damien Gallagher (NUIM), Natalie Harrower (RIA), Mark Maguire (IMMA), Paula McGloin (DIT), Jimmy Tang (TCD), and James Wogan (DIT).

    Join Our Mailing List

    Periodically we send out emails about events and activities related to the DRI. If you would like to join our mailing list, you can subscribe by visiting the Contact page.

    Qualitative Data Workshop

    The Irish Qualitative Data Archive is organising and we are co-hosting a Qualitative Data Workshop on Nov 20-21 at the National University of Ireland, Maynooth. The purpose of the workshop is to examine the contribution that qualitative social science researchers and archivists can make to the DASISH project, and to ensure their involvement and co-operation. For registration and programme information, see:

    DRI's partner the Digital Media Centre (DIT) lead the European Project Decipher.

    The DECIPHER project team are attending the Museums Association conference in Edinburgh. The team has been busy over the last two months, engaging museum professionals from the National Gallery of Ireland and the Irish Museum of Modern Art (IMMA) in initial trials of the project's prototype system.

    DECIPHER’s prototype system is now called Storyscope. For those museum professionals who research and tell stories about cultural content, Storyscope provides software tools which can help build more compelling narratives. Stories are used in museums to engage visitors with cultural collections and to facilitate meaningful understanding of museum objects.

    Through stories, Storyscope users can explore not just collections of individual objects, but the knowledge structures that connect and give them meaning. A key feature of Storyscope is the creation of Dossiers which allow users to assemble, organise and view their research materials.

    You can folllow Storyscope's progress at the Museums Association conference here:

    Digital Archiving in Ireland report available for download

    Our first national report, Digital Archiving in Ireland: National Survey of the Humanities and Social Sciences, co-authored by Aileen O'Carroll and Sharon Webb, is now available for download on our Publications page. For an overview of the report, please see our archive video of the presentation by the authors, and the official launch by Minister Sean Sherlock, TD on October 23, 2012.

    Videos of Panellists Posted

    Videos of our speakers' presentations from last week's Realising the Opportunities of Digital Humanities conference are now available as links from the Programme page of the conference website. Slides will be posted later in the week.

    Minister Sherlock acknowledges Ireland's Digital Archiving strengths

    Press release from the Department of Jobs, Enterprise & Innovation.  original link

    Minister Sherlock acknowledges Ireland's Digital Archiving strengths


    ‘Digital Repository of Ireland is a champion of digital innovation in Ireland with a multitude of applicable uses for societal and economic development internationally’ - Sherlock


    Minister Sherlock and members of the DRI team

    From L-R: Natalie Harrower; Minister Sean Sherlock, TD; Sandra Collins and Mairéad Heffron holding the report co-authored by Aileen O'Carroll and Sharon Webb of The National University of Ireland, Maynooth. Photo Credit: Johnny Bambury


    Speaking at the the Digital Repository of Ireland (DRI) conference event “Realising the Opportunities in Digital Humanities” Minister for Research and Innovation, Sean Sherlock TD, highlighted the importance of Digital Humanities in “Boosting Ireland’s image and reputation through the global exposure of Ireland’s culture and heritage through digital means”.

    The three day Digital Repository of Ireland (DRI) conference which concludes today (Thursday) was attended by over 200 national and international attendees.

    Minister Sherlock stated that “The area of Data Repositories preservation, and access, is an important part of harnessing Ireland’s human capital – and a great way to link the past with the present and the future.” The Minister emphasised to those present, which included a sizeable international contingent including EU representatives, that “Research and innovation is a cornerstone of Ireland’s overall economic development and that the Humanities and Social Sciences are very much a part of our research and innovation agenda.”

    The DRI is an online digital resource and a national digital infrastructure. Digitised cultural material is an important resource for European cultural and creative industries. European Cultural Heritage is the world’s most diverse and richest, and is of significant economic importance to industries such as tourism, heritage conservation, education and music amongst many other areas.

    Minister Sherlock added “I was extremely impressed by the diverse and exciting range of presentations on show here today in Croke Park, and how each in their own way are contributing significantly to the further development of Ireland.”

    During his address Minister Sherlock also launched the DRI’s national report entitled ‘Digital Archiving in Ireland - National Survey of the Humanities and Social Sciences’, commenting that “the Digital Repository of Ireland is now coming into its own as a champion of digital innovation in Ireland.”


    Aileen O'Carroll, Sharon Webb, Sandra Collins

    Authors Aileen O'Carroll and Sharon Webb from NUIM hold their report with DRI Director Sandra Collins. Photo Credit: Johnny Bambury


    The DRI event is central to one of Ireland’s national research priority areas in Digital Platforms, Content & Applications. Research prioritisation is a core element of the Irish Government’s jobs agenda.

    Speaking at the event the Director of the Digital Repository of Ireland, Dr. Sandra Collins said “The DRI is building a vast interactive national digital repository for contemporary and historical, social and cultural data held by numerous Irish institutions. The aim is to link together and preserve this data by providing a central internet access point and interactive multimedia tools for use by the public, students and scholars. “

    Dr. Collins added “A core aspect of the work of the DRI is that we are building richer, deeper stories which are constructed through accessing multiple complementary collections of content in a single location. And it is terrific to be able to say that through various supports from Government and other partners that Ireland is truly amongst the leaders globally in Digital Humanities.”

    The conference is being held to showcase Ireland’s strengths in digitisation with the support of the Royal Irish Academy, the Digital Enterprise Research Institute (DERI) which is a Science Foundation Ireland funded CSET; the Digital Humanities Observatory and the EU funded Digital Research Infrastructure for the Arts and Humanities (DARIAH).

    A truly diverse range of speakers and participants are involved which include the National Library of Ireland, Microsoft Research (USA), Google (USA), National archives of Ireland, the BBC, RTE, IBM (Ireland), The Higher Education Authority, Oxford University, The National Library of the Netherlands, RTE Radio na Gaeltachta, Kings College London, the Digital Preservation Coalition UK and the Ludwig-Maximilians Universitat Germany.

    The DRI is part-funded by the Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation through an award totalling €5.2m over four years under the Programme for Research in Third Level Institutions, which is administered by the Higher Education Authority.


    For more information :

    Dr Natalie Harrower, Manager, Education & Outreach, Digital Repository of Ireland
    Royal Irish Academy, 19 Dawson Street, Dublin 2

    tel: +353 (0) 609 0960,

    DJEI Press Office – Tel +353 (0) 6312200

    Pictures from #RODH2012 Day 1 posted

    Pictures of Minister Sherlock's visit to Day 1 of our conference (at Croke Park) are now in an album on our Facebook page. Tags and more pics coming soon...

    Live Video Streaming of Conference

    We have confirmation that we will be live streaming our talks for the conference. HEAnet is doing the filming and hosting the feed at  Join us virtually if you can't join us in person!

    Hashtag: #RODH2012

    #RODH2012 is the hashtag for Realising the Opportunities of Digital Humanities, Oct 23 - 25, 2012. We also invite you to post on our Facebook page:

    Demo Projects for next week's Workshop now on the website

    The full list of digital humanities projects that will be demonstrating on Day 1 of our workshop (at Croke Park) is now up on the website at There are still registration spaces left for this day. For more information, see

    Spaces left for Day 1 of Realising the Opportunities...

    We have spaces left for Day 1 of our workshop, Realising the Opportunities of Digital Humanities, which takes place at Croke Park. Registration for Day 2 and Day 3 is now closed. Day 1 includes a fantastic series of panel discussions, and demonstrations from 20 of Ireland's most exciting digital humanities projects.

    SFI Conference & Workshop Award

    We are pleased to announce that we were awarded a conference and workshop award from Science Foundation Ireland for our workshop Realising the Opportunites of Digital Humanities. SFI informed us that the review process is very competitive.

    Skills Workshops 25th October

    As part of the event Realising the Opportunities of Digital Humanities, hands-on skills workshops in Data Modelling, Data Visualisation and Linked data are being offered on Thursday 25th October. Spaces on these workshops are limited, so be sure to register your interest! See the skills workshops page for more details.

    Ireland Funds Grant.

    We are pleased to announce that DRI was successful in receiving an award from the Ireland Funds. The grant round was funded by The American Ireland fund and this was one of over 1000 applications received.

    DRI new website launched

    We are delighted to have our new website up, with more
    information on the DRI project, and the institutions and partners involved. Happy browsing!