Co-ordination mechanisms for digitisation
policies and programmes:
5th Official Meeting of the National Representatives Group (NRG)
Parma, 19th November 2003
Summary and Objectives of the meeting
The fifth meeting of the NRG was held on 19 November in Parma
under the chairmanship of the Italian Presidency of the European
Union. In addition, a conference on “Quality for cultural
web sites” was held on 20-21 November. Both events were
hosted by the Italian Ministry of Culture (MBAC) in Parma, in
collaboration with the Ministry for Innovation and Technologies,
with the Parma city local Authorities, the Region and the University
The NRG is established, according to its Terms of Reference
(ToR), to monitor, implement and coordinate actions concerning
digitisation programmes and policies in Europe. Formal adoption
or endorsement of the ToR by the participating EU Member States
is ongoing and progress is reported regularly to the NRG.
The Lund Principles are a set of guiding objectives concerning
digitisation and the coordination of Member States policies and
programmes. The Lund Action Plan maps out the actions needed and
is updated with progress and planning on a 6-monthly cycle. The
actions are agreed at NRG meetings, and the MINERVA network working
with the Member States representatives turns those actions into
a practical reality.
The specific objectives of the meeting in Parma
- Report on progress in the Member States in meeting the objectives
outlined in the Lund Principles, approve the Charter of Parma
as strategic document of the NRG and start a review process
leading to an Assessment Plan under the Irish Presidency.
- Validate the content and planning for the 2nd « NRG
report – progress 2003 and planning 2004 » to be
published by the European Commission and MINERVA.
- Introduce Newly Accession States (NAS) representatives to
the NRG; Russia and Israel representatives were welcomed as
observers at the meeting.
- Identify and prioritise emerging issues and concrete results
in 2004, recommend and endorse new strategies and actions to
take these forward through the Lund Action Plan and other relevant
This report presents firstly the key statements from the meeting,
then the progress made up to December 2003 for each action line,
and, finally future actions and emerging issues.
- The NRG welcomed NAS representatives’ Cyprus, Czech
Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Poland,
Slovakia, Slovenia, and the two observers from Russia and Israel.
The MINERVA PLUS project with extension to the NAS countries plus
Russia and Israel, was announced.
- The 2nd NRG Report will include a report from both the 25 countries
and Russia and Israel. Next NRG report is planned for late 2003,
but with a stronger focus on strategic issues. A first proposal
for the NRG Handbook, as a companion compilation of factual data
on portals and national profiles, useful contacts and networks,
available guidelines and standards, training courses, etc. was
presented for comments.
- The implementation of the Lund Action Plan is proceeding as
scheduled. Concrete actions in 2004 are identified, and a clearer
focus on results, “products”, and success indicators
is envisaged. A review process is launched and will continue under
the Irish Presidency leading to an Assessment Plan.
- The “Charter of Parma” is a strategic document
presenting the overall initiatives and highlighting progress and
potential impact. It presents activities and invites the Member
States and the Commission to support the initiative.
- The NRG confirms that a new action plan will be developed for
mid 2005. A blueprint will be produced under Dutch presidency.
MINERVA will support the discussions and provide the necessary
infrastructure. The Lund Principles remain the reference for the
NRG. The position paper on EU-added value and post-Lund strategy
produced by the Dutch representative and presented in Parma proved
a valuable starting point for defining future strategic actions.
- Three practical products, the MINERVA knowledge base (the former
NRG Handbook), the Good Practice Handbook and the 10 principles
and the Handbook for quality in cultural web sites are in progress
or being finalised.
- Smaller cultural institutions, and the inclusion of industry,
academia and public authorities into the MINERVA user community,
remains a key topic still to be addressed. MINERVA will develop
an advocacy plan for the NRG on key issues and challenges. Minerva
will present this advocacy plan to the next NRG for discussion.
- Cooperation with other projects, both EC funded and national,
is progressing well through meetings and concrete agreements with
main networks and new FP6 projects, e.g. the 'digitisation cluster
meeting' held during Bibliocom in Rome at the end of October 2003.
The NRG wishes to be informed in advance on these future cooperation
- The "Firenze agenda" is proposed by an experts group
to the NRG for endorsement as an extension of the current action
plan in order to link issues related to digital memory preservation.
The initiative is supported by the Italian Presidency, the European
Commission, the MINERVA and ERPANET projects. Other projects have
already joined the initiative and also the UNESCO has given full
support to the agenda.
Progress of implementation up to December 2003
The Lund Action Plan takes as its reference the Lund Principles,
identifying four main areas where specific actions are needed.
For each action it defines objectives, the implementation approach
and associated tasks, actors, and results achieved. NRG has launched
various activities to cover issues within the four areas and,
even if they often overlap each other, it's possible to map back
activities to the four core areas.
Five priorities were established for the second semester 2003,
and were underlined by the Italian Presidency as areas where rapid
progress was expected.
- Consolidate the leading role of the NRG and
high-level commitment to the Lund Principles, also using the
tool of publications and recommendations.
Progress: the Italian Presidency presented the conclusions of
the last NRG meeting in Corfu at the Committee des Affaires Culturelle
CAC in Brussels in July 2003. The reception was very positive,
and the NRG and MINERVA were encouraged to continue their work.
The 2nd NRG report is being prepared by MINERVA, and will be published
in Feb. 2004. The approach is more strategy-oriented and it will
include national reports from the 15 Member States, from the 10
NAS, and from the two observers to the NRG: Russia and Israel.
The NRG report will be published and widely distributed through
the official channels as well as on the MINERVA web site. The
Italian and Irish Presidencies have launched an Assessment Plan
in order to review progress and outline future practical objectives.
Concerning long-term strategy development, the Dutch national
representative has developed a position paper focussing on the
EU-added value of this initiative.
A strategic document, the «Charter of Parma», is proposed
to the NRG in Parma for approval. It represents the natural continuation
of the NRG priority to consolidate the position of the group,
to build consensus and to promote the adoption of common recommendations
and guidelines. The draft Charter has been presented at the CAC
meeting on the 27th of October 2003. After the NRG adoption, the
Charter will be presented at the formal Council of Cultural Ministries,
on the 24th of November 2003, still under the Italian Presidency.
- Present the guidelines for quality for web sites on
Progress : It was proposed 3 levels of tools: The Ten Principles,
(a draft version) which is a guide for the development of cultural
access points that celebrate European cultural diversity by
providing high quality access for all to digital cultural content.
(A short and a long versions were proposed). The explanations
of these principles will be the 2nd level of tools, they will
be drafted in the next months. The quality principles will be
described through criteria which will be used to measure the
principles themselves. And finally the 3rd level, the Handbook
for Quality in Cultural Websites, improving quality
for citizens which is a working document and also a work in
All these tools are building on the Brussels Quality Framework
and taking also into account the W3C-WAI accessibility guidelines
and other international initiatives. The principles outline quality
criteria for cultural web sites and include a practical checklist
to be used during site creation and maintenance. After the meeting
in Parma, the workgroup will finalise the quality tools and will
develop a concrete implementation strategy. Within the MINERVA
Quality Working Group was set up a European Editorial Committee.
Focus should be given to quality principles and criteria specific
to cultural Web sites as opposed to general quality criteria for
Web design. An international conference on quality and accessibility
for cultural web sites was organised for 20-21 November in Parma.
The substantial response and interest from user communities, national
authorities and professional bodies, demonstrated the importance
of the issue.
- Extend the network to NAS and small institutions.
Progress: A new project MINERVA PLUS will be funded by the European
Commission to enlarge MINERVA to the New Accession States (NAS),
to extend existing working groups, and to include the participation
of both Russia and Israel. The Italian Presidency, in cooperation
with the European Commission, formally invited through the CAC
the NAS countries to nominate representatives to the NRG. At this
5th NRG meeting most of the NAS countries nominated representatives
and presented their national digitisation activities. Presentations
from both Russia and Israel were also welcomed. Initial, but valuable,
tasks have already been started in some NAS countries, e.g. translation
of Lund Principles, establishing of national coordination groups.
It is evident, based on the national reports and introductions
presented by the NAS countries, that there are on going digitisation
projects in almost every country. Common issues emerge such as
IPR, quality and accessibility, interoperability and so on. Coordination
at national and European level appears to be an important issue
to be addressed in order to exchange good practices, focus investments
and share results with other countries. MINERVA will offer co-ordination
mechanisms already implemented and all the products such as training
courses, handbooks and the web site. The MINERVA PLUS structure
foresees the integration of NAS experts into the original workgroups
to share experience and skill within the enlarged network.
In the framework of the PATRAS-ROME initiative a network of small
cultural institutions has been established in Greece.
- Finalise the handbook on good practice before
Progress: Comments and changes have been made following the meeting
in Corfu. The first version of the “Good Practice Handbook”
is now ready to be published and widely distributed and promoted
in order to create awareness with institutional actors. The Handbook
was discussed and validated by the MINERVA workgroup at the workshop
in Rome on 29 October at Bibliocom. By definition this type of
publication must be considered as ‘work in progress’,
so an updating and validation strategy is needed. This must involve
the collection of new good practice examples and the extraction
of the new lessons learned. MINERVA is finalising a database project
and one of the features will be a way to collect new good practice
- Carry on the activity on preservation of digital memory.
Progress: The Italian Presidency has promoted, in cooperation
with the European Commission and the ERPANET and MINERVA projects,
an international conference on digital memory preservation on
16-17 October 2003 in Firenze. In preparing the conference an
expert group prepared a joint document, the “Firenze agenda”,
identifying three priority topics – create awareness, exchange
of good practice, and the development of a long-term strategy.
A substantial consensus was seen with institutional actors, national
authorities, UNESCO, as well as with many EU funded projects working
in the domain. Some very practical short-term actions have been
identified and progress will be reviewed during the Dutch Presidency.
Progress in other areas
The 1st NRG report gave visibility to a significant
number of important national initiatives, showed that there was
much to said on the issues of standards and good practices, and
that coordination approaches in the Member States are now numerous
and followed a wide variety of cooperative models.
Distribution of the report in most of the countries has followed
official channels covering Ministers, ministerial advisors and
correspondents in the field of digitisation, experts on digital
documentation and multimedia, national programmes of digitisation,
and cultural institutions and organisations, including provincial
museums, archives and libraries. The approach opened channels
for future NRG publications and reinforced the position of NRG
in accordance with their ToR.
In addition it is now recognised that EU initiatives, such as
the NRG and MINERVA, can influence national activities and that
some new national initiatives explicitly reference the Lund Principles
and the work of the NRG.
The 2nd NRG report is under preparation, coordinated
by the Italian Presidency. It will focus on policy issues (institutional,
regional, sectoral) in the Member States, as well as national
programme initiatives and strategic developments considerations.
This 2nd report will extend its coverage to the 10 new accession
states (NAS), and will include a section for non-EU countries
with contributions from Russian and Israel. A particular emphasis
will be placed on how digitisation is becoming an element in wider
information or knowledge society policies. It will also focus
more on the emerging cooperative actions between Member States
and in the international context. Another emerging issue to be
addressed is how to make the Lund Principles and the actions of
the NRG more relevant and visible to smaller cultural institutions.
With the continued trend towards decentralisation in the Member
States the 2nd NRG report will provide a more in depth coverage
of specific regional digitisation activities.
Minerva Knowledge base
The definition of the NRG Handbook given in the Corfu conclusions
has evolved in to a new concept of the MINERVA knowledge
base. It will host all factual information relating to
digitisation in Europe, including national policy profiles and
web pages, information on membership, status, mandates and working
methods of national coordination groups through a “Who
is who in cultural digitisation”, information on
centres of practical expertise and advice, and lists of nationally
recognised guidelines, benchmarking results and training courses
will be published and updated on the MINERVA web site.
Benchmarking helps increase the overall quality of digitisation
projects and supports the exchange of good practice, is valuable
for project monitoring and review, and it can be used in the selection
of projects by funded authorities.
The model for benchmarking has been adopted and is being implemented,
according to national requirements. The MINERVA benchmarking working
group split its activities into 3 phases, namely:
- Phase 1: experiment run during 2002 - results have been integrated
into the NRG Report 2002
- Phase 2: finalisation of tools and methods in order to extend
benchmarking to a larger user community until August 2003 -
delivering to phase 3 the online tool as well as a larger sample
of surveyed institutions per country
- Phase 3: starts late 2003 - focus on campaign for questionnaire
collection, analysis and exploitation of gathered data, tool
improvements, and the involvement of the new accession states.
The progress made so far has been very encouraging and MINERVA
produced a report in August 2003 outlining ways to develop and
promote the use of the benchmarking tool.
The next step is to help institutions find benchmarking partners
so that they can share results and best practices. Another objective
must be to define qualitative and quantitative data about current
practices and to improve visibility on digitisation projects,
programmes and policies.
Cooperative networks now exist in almost all Member States,
and their role and competences are described in the NRG Handbook.
The workshops hosted under the Hellenic and Italian Presidencies
brought together many of the well-established national and European
networks (Corfu in June 2003 and Rome in October 2003).
At Bibliocom on 29 October, MINERVA organised a meeting on digitisation
and invited all the main networks and projects working in the
field. A common approach based on a “terms of cooperation”
joint document was developed with a view to creating a European
Area for digitisation.
Among other significant initiatives, the cooperation with the
EMII-DCF – ‘Minerva joint position paper on the importance
of IST research for heritage resources’ is one of the most
valuable results and example of synergy between projects funded
by the European Commission.
Inventories and resource discovery
Lists of digitised content guidelines have been compiled to
help set up national inventories of digitised content, as well
as specifications for a pan-European platform. Descriptions of
French and Italian collections are accessible through an experimental
A first meeting brought together European specialists of multilingual
access to heritage resources. A cooperation with Minerva quality
and good practices focuses will allow to raise awareness with
cultural actors on the importance of taking into account the European
multilingual environment when creating digital cultural content.
The identification of existing complementary digitised collections
could eventually lead to the creation of joint services.
Interoperability depends upon the implementation of technical
standards. Discussion between MINERVA and the ERPANET, EMII-DCF
and PULMAN projects resulted in the agreed need to develop a common
set of Technical Guidelines. These Guidelines were to be aimed
to support those developing new digitisation programmes, encouraging
the adoption of good practice as part of the requirements for
funding. An initial version of the document was presented and
comments are invited. The Technical Guidelines will be maintained
and updated to ensure that they are kept up to date as standards
change and new developments are adopted. Together, the Quality
Principles, Technical Guidelines, Good Practice Guidelines and
Benchmarking establish a virtuous circle.
Together with work on Inventories, a coherent model has been
established for the development of interoperable services at a
European level. The adoption of common XML schema for collections
and digital services, agreement on basic terminologies, the use
of DC.Culture for item-level searching, and the use of Open Archives
Initiative together offer the opportunity to build a European
inventory of digitisation projects.
In order to continue these developments, it is essential that
work such as on the Technical Guidelines and Good Practice Guidelines
are maintained. The role of an Observatory could be very interesting,
undertaking roles of horizon-scanning, maintaining guidelines
and co-ordinating the European contribution to global initiatives.
This Observatory could be constructed by the networking, on a
sustainable basis, of existing leading organisations in the field.
The NRG should be look at the idea of an observatory in the near
On Intellectual Property Rights, work has concentrated on the
ways in which the re-use of materials within an educational context
can be enabled and on a framework that could be negotiated with
copyright licensing agencies to simplify the cost of clearing
rights for digitisation.
The Patras–Rome initiative and on-going work
The objective of this initiative has been to focus attention
on the societal and economic value of digitisation and long-term
digital preservation in Europe and has represented an instrument
to link the priorities of the Greek and Italian Presidencies.
Two major focuses have been prioritised: the understanding of
needs and requirements of small cultural organisations and the
consolidation of recommendations and technical guidelines, representing
a practical answer to the small organisations’ needs.
During the Italian Presidency, a network of small cultural organisations
has been established experimentally in Greece to demonstrate a
practical way to provide support in accessing national funds for
digitisation (for further information about the initiative, please
refer to the Greek National Report, November 2003).
The analysis of the demand of the small organisations will continue
as a specific topic in the Minerva Plus work plan.
A collection of existing guidelines for digitisation has been
included in the Good Practices Handbook.
Technical Guidelines are under development in the frame of WP3
and WP4 and in cooperation with EMII-DCF project. A first draft
of the Technical Guidelines has been distributed for comments
just before the Parma NRG meeting and will be finalised in early
Immediate actions (January – June 2004)
For the first semester 2004 the Irish Presidency sets out the
- To complete the progress assessment of the ‘Coordinating
Digitisation in Europe’ initiative. This will be formally
launched by the Irish minister with responsibility for culture.
- To launch the Dublin Folio, comprising the publications completed
by the NRG/Minerva.
- To coordinate the extension of the NRG to include the New Accession
States, Israel and Russia.
- To explore the development of portal initiatives in the context
of a future European Cultural Portal.
- To support the ongoing focus on digital preservation by hosting
a meeting of national experts in this area. This will contribute
to future work, led by the Netherlands presidency.
The meeting agreed that the NRG members at national level would
undertake and support the following actions, in addition to the
ongoing support for the workgroups coordinated through MINERVA.
Practical actions to be undertaken before the
next NRG meeting:
- The 2nd NRG report is planned for December
2003, under the Italian Presidency. It focuses on policy developments,
national initiatives and strategic developments considerations.
Coverage is extended to the 10 States preparing for adhesion
to the EU, plus Russia and Israel. It will be published early
2004 and distributed by Minerva in cooperation with the Irish
and the Dutch Presidency. The Dutch Presidency will also ensure
the preparation of the 3rd NRG report planned for late 2004.
Contributions for the 2nd NRG report must arrive by the beginning
of December 2003.
- Under the Italian Presidency the "Charter of
Parma" has been produced, a strategic document
promoting all the activities, to be presented to the Council
of Ministers of Culture on 24 November 2003. The Irish Presidency
will continue the distribution and promotion of the Charter
that will be available on the web site and in a paper copy for
- Under the Italian Presidency a scientific seminar on “Territorial
Information systems for the Preservation, Conservation and Management
of Cultural Heritage” was held in Naples 23-24 Oct. 2003.
The meeting looked at the important role of geographic
information in the context of cultural heritage, e.g.
archaeological sites, etc., and proposed a permanent group to
bring together Europe-wide actions in the field. The NRG is
invited to interact with this new group through the MINERVA
- A new MINERVA knowledge Base has been developed
in order to host factual information derived from the work of
the network and to make them available on-line. The “Who
is who” is a by-product of the knowledge base
with factual information about policies, programmes and coordination
activities in the Member States. Comments on the structure were
from the NRG. Feedback is needed on the initial data structures
and data collection for both products. Deadlines: all the partners
to send comments about data structure and collection by 5 December
2003; Italy and Spain to deliver a full data collection plan
by 19 December 2003; a first version of the populated database
and 'Who is who' by January 2004; all the partners should commit
to contribute to data gathering and updating.
- The Good Practice Handbook distributed at
the NRG meeting in Parma must be considered as the collection
of the lessons learnt, through the analysis of good practices
collected so far. Selection of good practices and competence
centres is however a continuous work for which the support of
NRG is fundamental. Web forms on the MINERVA web site call for
new examples of good practices and competence centres, which
will be stored in the Minerva Knowledge Base. Each country is
asked to nominate at least one expert to join the MINERVA working
group and to act as the reference point at national level for
approving the proposed good practices and competence centres
and for disseminating the Handbook in their respective countries.
A summary version of the handbook will be produced in order
to encourage national translation and distribution.
- The Progress Assessment launched by the Italian
and Irish Presidency will continue and will be integrated with
the on-going work of the Netherlands on EU-added value
and post-Lund strategy (including the work
already presented in Parma). This will include a set of concrete
objectives and success indicators for each
action in the Lund Action plan. It will also define a set of
possible priorities for a next action plan in 2005, and the
Netherlands has indicated that they will the first to take on
these new priorities.
- The International Conference on Long-Term Preservation
of Digital Memory organised under the Italian Presidency was
a success and produced the Firenze agenda with
priority actions to be undertaken in the next 12/18 months.
Some projects have assumed responsibility for different areas.
The Dutch Presidency has already offered to host another conference
on this issue. A web page will be prepared and the workgroup
will restart activity immediately after Parma under the coordination
of the Italian Ministry of Culture – ICCU. The NRG has
adopted the initiative and the experts group supported by MINERVA
and ERPANET and other projects. Each country is invited to nominate
experts by December 2003 (ideally those already participating
in the current workgroup).
- The 10 principles and the Handbook
for quality in cultural web sites were presented in
Parma - in a version ‘request for comments’ in order
to enlarge consensus and to prepare an implementation strategy.
The MINERVA workgroup will propose some mechanisms and a schedule
of actions. A monitor and review strategy to measure acceptance
by the different Member States and determine the impact of the
initiative must be produced by the workgroup in the next 6 months.
The focus should be on criteria, principles and guidance for
quality of cultural Web sites and only consider general Web
design criteria where absolutely necessary.
- At the meeting in Rome on 30 October, important consensus
has been collected about the idea of a digitisation
cluster launched in Corfu. Representatives of many
networks or projects joined the proposal and declared terms
of availability for cooperation with other projects. The final
document, referred as Roma agenda summaries agreements and outlines
the next steps towards an ambitious objective of a European
Area for digitisation. The next meeting of the group
will take place at the EVA Florence in March 2004.
- The benchmarking report produced by the MINERVA
workgroup closes a phase of development. Now the work should
focus on providing a tool to measure and improve practices.
The longer-term focus will be online benchmarking, analysis
and exploitation of gathered data, tool improvements, and the
involvement of the new accession states. A clear strategy for
follow-up is expected by the MINERVA workgroup and NRG.
- The Italian workgroup on IPR has produced
a work based on the national legal situation that is a starting
point to define possible scenarios and opportunities. The objective
is offer a clear map for decision-makers and the national level,
and to identify a minimum common platform to build European
e-services. Additional work must be done in exploring suitable
business models and revenue production for economical sustainability.
A completed framework to lower the costs of clearing IPR will
be presented to the next meeting of the NRG.
- General call to extend experts participation in all the
MINERVA workgroups as a way to bring together a wider range of
experts in different national networks.
- The inventories of resources and the interoperability
MINERVA workgroup will cooperate to write a explanation on:
the quality principles for cultural web sites and multilingualism.
This will include a description of good practice of multilingual
access to cultural resources, the use of good practices methodology,
the identification of several European complementary collections,
and any improvement to the French-Italian portal in order to
attract additional participants.
- MINERVA e-learning courses aim to introduce participants
and institutions to the key issues and decision points that they
face in acquiring, managing, and preserving digital collections.
The course combines elements of distance learning with face-to-face
interaction. It also includes learning material elaborated by
other projects and institutions such as ABSIDE, HATII of the University
of Glasgow, and the joint masters degree of the Universities of
Northumbria and Parma.
emerging strategic issues
Future strategies and EU-added value
The Lund Action Plan will close in 2005. A follow-up is under
discussion and preparation by NRG and Minerva. A concrete outline
of new and continued objectives, actions and instruments will
be prepared and possibly presented by the Dutch Presidency during
the Council meeting in November 2004, for further preparation
by the following presidencies.
Preservation of digital and digitised memory
A first agenda for co-operation and actions has emerged in the
form of a “Firenze agenda” adopted by the NRG. Cooperation
exists bringing together all current European and international
actors in digital memory conservation activities. Actions consist
of workshops, seminars, and co-ordination and network services.
During the Dutch Presidency attention to the issue will continue,
and they plan to organise a European conference on preservation
and access of digital and digitised heritage, cultural websites
and media-art. Progress of the Firenze agenda will be reviewed
during the Dutch Presidency.
The concept of a portal is increasingly seen as valuable tool
to present cultural resources and to dialogue with the citizen.
Today it should be seen as an important practical step in providing
improved access to cultural collections. Many Member State reports
highlight the role of cultural portals, and/or culture “nets”,
and indirectly underline the increasing importance of collection
building and standards. Portals and culture-nets can integrate
work on policy profiles, inventories and interoperability, research
on distributed digital libraries, resource discovery services,
collection descriptions, quality, accessibility and usability,
multilingualism, best practices, etc. The portal is an excellent
way to reach a very wide user community and offer a set of e-services
based upon digital heritage. The portal federates the efforts
of cultural and memory organisations (archives, libraries, museums),
e-government actors, academia, and industry. Today education and
cultural tourism are two of the most powerful drives for creating
these applications, however others can be expected to emerge in
The Irish Presidency will host a conference in Dublin on 29
June 2004 examining the issue of portals from an end-user viewpoint.
The issues of IPR are complex, with uncertainty on the adoption
of DRM mechanisms and a legal framework that has many difficulties
for the cultural sector. Even the private sector has difficulty
in building sustainable business models. In this context, five
actions will be launched:
- Creation of training guide on IPR, based on the EMII-DCF
project deliverables and the Italian study
- Development of a model requirements for a Digital Rights
Management system, and a tool to assist cultural sector organisations
in assessing the suitability of DRM solutions
- Meeting of experts to review the implementation of the
- Define the parameters and roles for creating a secure
and protected digital environment of cultural heritage collections
- Define the parameters and roles of Trusted Third Parties
and services in cultural sector business models
New interactive technologies
New technology developments in the fields of 3D scanning, photo
realistic modelling, geographic information systems, location-based
systems and services, virtual-, mixed-, and augmented-reality,
etc. are increasingly being featured in Member State reports.
These technologies are becoming both less expensive and easier
to use, the technical delivery infrastructure such as broadband
is now more diffused and affordable, and thus new «3-D »
programmes for cultural heritage are increasingly being developed.
The use of these new tools, when combined with the cultural
expertise resident in Europe’s institutions, allows the
creation of new cultural experiences. They permit the creations
of, and interaction with, models and visualisations of objects,
sites, monuments, etc. and collections of such objects. Some cooperative
effort could be useful if concentrated on:
- Understanding the way such models can go beyond a simple visualisation,
and support new evaluation processes, control and management
- The way such models can be linked to documentary and data
- The role such models and visualisation can have in supporting
the way the public in institutions interacts with cultural content
and cultural institutions
- The coordination of public and private efforts to create a
new form of digital library of models and visualisations, supporting
comparative analysis and acting as an education resource.
The specific features of 3D digitisation and the role of such
data when included in portable or fixed immersive and interactive
systems would justify the creation of an ad-hoc working group.
The task would be to look at the usefulness of the different technologies
and document good practices, identify particular technical barriers
and constraints, examine interoperability issues, and ensuring
a proper articulation with the work of the NRG and MINERVA.
Conclusions of the meeting
The NRG is guardian of the Lund Principles and a platform for
pro-active coordination, as stated in its Terms of Reference and
from now on in the "Charter of Parma". MINERVA is responsible
for the routine implementation of Lund Action Plan. The NRG promotes
the objectives of Lund and where appropriate the products of MINERVA,
identifies emerging priorities, and encourages wider cooperation
both between different cultural institutions and with other related
sectors. NRG members must ensure the continuity of the actions,
develop collectively new themes and goals, and plan for their
The NRG appreciated the Italian Presidency’s work in support
of the Lund Action Plan and welcomed at the strategic level the
discussions on new priorities and the assessment plan to review
the process, and at the practical level the development of concrete
results and products and the follow-up given to the former Presidencies
work on digital preservation. In particular, the NRG considers
that the effective cooperation and grouping started with some
other projects and national initiatives is an added value really
significant to reinforce the consensus and approach across Europe.
Building on the positive experience made during the Greek and
the Italian Presidencies at the NRG meeting in Corfu. Now the
cooperation and planning of actions to be undertaken in common
by current and successive presidencies has taken a step forwards,
and also involves the Irish and Dutch Presidencies. The European
Commission and NRG encourages such initiatives.
The Irish Presidency will host the 6th NRG meeting in Dublin
on 28 June 2004.On the preceding day, the final report of the
“Progress Assessment of the coordinating digitisation in
Europe” initiative will be launched. On 29 June 2004, there
will be a digitisation conference “Access all areas: serving
the user”. This conference will examine portals from an
The NRG thanked the Italian Presidency for the organisation
of and constructive input to the debate of this meeting. A special
thanks was expressed to the city of Parma, the local authorities
and institutes for the warm hospitality and excellent support.