background image
that has only a small source of people interested in cinematography from a historical point
of view:
"Legitimising your institution, I think that is a problem museums are faced with more
than libraries or archives perhaps, because I can imagine that a lot of people come to
libraries because they need the information. At the museum you are always faced with
people who have a lot of different choices to make. (...) And I think for the Filmmuseum it
is very important to find partners who enable you to legitimise your existence, and to get
the people you want to reach more attracted to your museum." (DigiCULT ERT, Berlin,
July 5, 2001)
Reaching critical mass and new perspectives on different collections
Co-operation is a basis to reach a critical mass of networked content and, as a participant
in the DigiCULT study described it,"combining things that we could not have combined
before".The huge investments in new technologies seems only legitimate, if the co-
operative use of these technologies brings about new value that has a broad impact on
cultural experience and inclusion, knowledge and education:
"I want to stress that co-operation legitimises in a way the use of IC technologies.There
will be network services or no services, that is my opinion, and if we do not achieve a very
new quality of information by use of IC technologies then we cannot legitimise expensive
and very time-consuming efforts in this field. So we need a new quality of results, new
views on our history, new views on our collections, and this means co-operation between
different institutions, combining things that we could not combine before. It is absolutely
necessary to achieve this kind of co-operation." (Andreas Bienert, Prussian Heritage
Foundation, State Museums of Berlin; ERT, Berlin, July 5, 2001).
Partnerships with mediators as bridges to major sponsors
Due to the tradition of memory institutions, their specific mission and values, the "fit"
necessary between them and possible sponsors from the business world has not always been
apparent, in certain projects. Here mediators (e.g. media companies) that understand the
different perspectives and cultures can be helpful in building a bridge. Bettina Schoch,
Pandora New Media, Berlin, describes the benefits of such partnerships:
"Our partners in the cultural sector often have not enough money for the projects they
are heading for.We are always trying to help by making relations and contacts to business
partners.We know big industry partners and we know from cultural projects how their
house policy is. And we are always trying to really find together with institutions and
industry partners a concept in which both sides can benefit from. Of course this is
sometimes not that easy because, well, what you might hear is `Today, you are the twentieth
person who calls us for a digitisation project ...'" (DigiCULT ERT, Berlin, July 5 2001)
Co-operating to unlock the value of cultural heritage resources
Today, cultural heritage institutions realise that the networked media offer them new
opportunities to unlock the value of their information, objects, and knowledge to their
users and the public at large. In previous chapters the organisational changes have been
addressed that today take place within the institutions.These changes are oriented towards
"re-inventing" the institutions in terms of workflows and procedures.They are focused on
the internal chemistry, the "back-office" operations.Yet, these changes in how things are
done are of course for the most part directly related to ICT-based services the institutions
provide to their users. Furthermore, unlocking the value of cultural heritage resources is