Lightning Talk Digital Humanities Australasia 2018

Connecting Collections: crossing institutional and organisational divides to showcase eResearch with Omeka S (62)

Kim Shaw 1 , Elizabeth Seymour 1
  1. University of Tasmania, Hobart, TASMANIA, Australia

Lightning talk proposal

A growing demand for platforms that support the presentation and publication of non-traditional research outputs (NTROs)[1], and the search for a software application to link and showcase unique collections, has seen the University of Tasmania Library’s adoption of the most recent iteration of the web-publishing platform Omeka from the Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media. Significantly different in performance and build to the more familiar Omeka Classic, Omeka S offers improved interoperability across systems and a greater capacity for linking data.

Making connections between the Library, individual researchers, as well as the various faculties and divisions within the University has driven the vision for Exhibit, our Omeka S instance. An initial desire to make our Library’s Special and Rare Collections findable and accessible has developed into an interoperable, institutional-wide digital publishing discovery platform. Long-term, we hope the Library managed Exhibit platform will assist in promoting a cultural shift, connecting our Special and Rare Collections to institutional research output.

Omeka S provides an alternative platform for measuring engagement and impact to traditional print publications. Demand for such platforms are becoming increasingly important for digital humanities researchers looking for tools to showcase and share their research outputs with a view to complying with Excellence in Research Australia (ERA) reporting requirements.  

This lightning talk will provide a snapshot of the trials and successes we have experienced to date in our journey to develop and integrate this new Omeka S platform we call Exhibit. We will also showcase examples of research we have featured on this platform. We hope that sharing our journey to date, and some of the outcomes we have achieved, will assist others in evaluating the suitability of similar installations for their own institutions as well as guide researchers regarding the potential to engage with this platform.


Elizabeth Seymour is a Discovery and Research Librarian, with the University of Tasmania. Libby has worked as a Librarian at the University of Tasmania Library in various roles including: liaison, research, student learning and most recently in Discovery Services.  She has also been involved in a number of Special and Rare Collections projects with the Library.  Libby also has a background in communications.


Kim Shaw is a Librarian, AALIA(CP) with the University of Tasmania and current PhD candidate researching Nineteenth Century Convict Scar and Injury Patterns. This project explores archival documents and data currently housed in the Founders and Survivors database and is supervised by Professor Hamish Maxwell-Stewart and Dr Kristyn Harman.