Yale Library IT Supports ArchivesSpace

The implementation of ArchivesSpace is a collaborative effort among archives and special collection units and Library IT. This project is exciting because ArchivesSpace is to special collections as Voyager is to YUL’s general collections. Library IT has a long-standing relationship with Voyager as an enterprise level application, providing server support, coordinating upgrades, managing custom development, and encouraging an ideology of systems and data integration. The implementation work of ArchivesSpace (AS) will run a similar gamut of standard IT support, including supporting three instances of AS (dev, test, production), configuring an LDAP server and Active Directory group for authentication, assisting with data analysis and export, participating in a series of sprints with a third party vendor to develop custom plug-ins for AS, and managing some in-house development to integrate AS with Voyager. While these tasks are typical of an IT project, success depends on the collaborative relationship IT develops with archival and special collections staff. Library IT is investing time to learn the current and expected workflow supported by AS, and why the tool is critical to the daily operations of archivists and special collections professionals. IT is also learning the lexicon employed by special collections (and one day I hope to fully understand what a container is), and what archivists geek out on. The technical and social elements of new systems implementations comprise the ultimate success.

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