In the past, systems that present digitized archival materials were often created with limited knowledge of their audiences’ needs and greater focus on the materials. Organizations must ask whether digital delivery systems are sufficiently effective to merit financial support. As part of the planning process for a digital delivery system at the Orbis Cascade Alliance, the Northwest Digital Archives (NWDA) consortium conducted a study of its core researchers’ needs for the selection and presentation of archival materials online. With the assistance of NWDA members, 19 subjects were recruited for hour-long interviews. Although the number of subjects meant that the conclusions should be regarded as preliminary rather than definitive, we were able to draw conclusions about these researchers’ needs and desires that will shape the development of elements of the Alliance's digital delivery systems for unique locally held content.
This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis in Journal of Archival Organization on Nov. 8, 2011, available online: http://www.tandfonline.com/10.1080/15332748.2011.598400.
Hauck, J., Allison-Bunnell, J., & Yakel, E. (2011). Researchers at Work: Assessing Needs for Content and Presentation of Archival Materials. Journal of Archival Organization. 9 (2), 67-104.