New crowdsourcing handbook – free online access

The Collective Wisdom Handbook: Perspectives on Crowdsourcing in Cultural Heritage is an open access book about crowdsourcing, with a particular focus on crowdsourcing in cultural heritage contexts. The book draws together advice and suggestions based on the collective experience of a group of crowdsourcing practitioners from a variety of backgrounds.

Starting from a discussion of crowdsourcing in cultural heritage (What is crowdsourcing in cultural heritage? Why work with crowdsourcing in cultural heritage?) the handbook moves on to reflect and advise on how to design and run a crowdsourcing project (Designing cultural heritage crowdsourcing projects; Aligning tasks, platforms, and goals; Managing cultural heritage crowdsourcing projects), with attention drawn to the role and importance of crowdsourcing participants (Understanding and connecting to participant motivations; Supporting participants; Connecting with communities). A strong focus throughout is the role of values and how projects can be designed and run with these in mind (Identifying, aligning, and enacting values in your project). The book also contains chapters about working with crowdsourced data, evaluating your crowdsourcing project, and planning crowdsourcing events, as well as a glossary and comprehensive list of references. Throughout, the discussion is accompanied and illustrated by examples and case studies.

This book is written for crowdsourcing practitioners who work in cultural institutions, as well as those who wish to gain experience with crowdsourcing. It provides both practical tips, grounded in lessons often learned the hard way, and inspiration from research across a range of disciplines. Case studies and perspectives based on our experience are woven throughout the book, complemented by information drawn from research literature and practice within the field.
(from the Introduction).

The handbook aims to be “the definitive guide to designing, managing, and integrating crowdsourcing activities for cultural heritage collections”. It has been written collaboratively by a team of crowdsourcing practitioners as part of the Collective Wisdom project, led by Dr Mia Ridge (British Library) and Co-Investigators Dr Meghan Ferriter (Library of Congress) and Dr Sam Blickhan (Zooniverse).

[The Collective Wisdom] project brings together world-leading experts to document the state of the art in designing, managing and integrating crowdsourcing activities, and to look ahead to future challenges and unresolved issues that could be addressed by larger, longer-term collaboration on methods for digitally-enabled participation.
Collective Wisdom project website

The Collective Wisdom Handbook: Perspectives on Crowdsourcing in Cultural Heritage is made freely available through the Digital Scholarship at the British Library platform.

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