How Amalia Levi Does HistoryHistorians in the News
tags: archives, cultural heritage
Editor’s note: This is the thirteenth entry in a series on how historians—especially contingent historians and those employed outside of tenure-track academia—do the work of history. If you know of someone we should interview, or would like to be interviewed yourself, send an email with the subject line HOW I DO HISTORY to email@example.com.
You’re the founder and chair of The HeritEdge Connection, Inc. Tell us about the organization and the work it does.
The HeritEdge Connection is a non-profit organization, established in 2018, with the aim of bringing together people and institutions around cultural heritage projects. The model is a simple one: we forge connections and collaborations by helping institutions see potential projects in their collections, seek grant funding in collaboration with and for them, and carry out these projects once funding has been awarded.
Most cultural heritage organizations have holdings that can form the basis for amazing projects, but lack the resources (funds, time, staff, expertise, etc.) to dedicate to them. On top of this, grant-making agencies might not be aware of all the organizations and potential projects that need funding. Furthermore, there are university students and cultural heritage enthusiasts that have time and skills to offer, and benefit from working or volunteering in these projects. HeritEdge aims to be the common thread among them all.
An important aspect of what HeritEdge does is public outreach and engagement, particularly around the issue of accessibility. For instance, digitization of archival holdings in countries in the Global South benefits scholars in the Global North. Often, local audiences have trouble accessing physical copies, particularly since so much has been carried off to colonial metropoles, and remain unaware that digitized material pertaining to their history is easily accessible online. We promote accessibility through public workshops, by encouraging people to directly engage with digitized archival material.
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