Call for participation: Lighting the Way working meeting (deadline March 8, 2021)

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Mark A. Matienzo

Feb 9, 2021, 2:17:10 PM2/9/21
Call for participation: Lighting the Way working meeting (deadline March 8, 2021)


The Lighting the Way project team requests proposals from groups of around 3 to 6 participants to participate in a series of online meetings and collaborative activities over the course of six weeks, starting the week of April 19, 2021. Each working group will develop a written contribution of 5 to 10 pages, exploring topics related to improving archival discovery and delivery, intended for inclusion in a larger handbook compiled and published by the Lighting the Way project team.


To apply, please complete an application form, including a 250-word abstract of your proposed topic and potential group participants, no later than March 8, 2021, using the following link:  

PDF version of the application form is available for your reference. Participants will be notified by March 29, 2021 if selected to participate.


These contributions are intended to build on the work of Lighting the Way: A National Forum on Archival Discovery and Delivery, held at Stanford University in February 2020, which focused on information sharing and collaborative problem solving to improve discovery and delivery for archives and special collections. The Forum provided rich opportunities for discovering points of convergence, which can be explored in the Preliminary Report on the Forum. Topics generated by Forum participants may provide a starting point for proposals, but applicants are welcome to propose topics that are not represented in the Preliminary Report appendices.


Some possible topics for exploration drawn from the Preliminary Report include: 


  • Virtual reading rooms, or providing remote access to archival collections in a sustainable manner
  • User experience and discoverability of archival materials 
  • How institutions or projects have integrated systems and software supporting archival discovery and delivery
  • Integrating archival description with other access and fulfillment systems, including for digital collections
  • Copyright policies and practices


Written contributions may take the form of: 


  • Case studies of archival discovery and delivery in local contexts
  • Proposals of new or emerging models of archival discovery and delivery
  • Analysis or position papers on key components and/or systems in archival discovery and delivery
  • Analysis of a specific project or collaboration involving archival discovery and delivery, or opportunities to collaborate across institutions
  • Discussion of institutional workflows and systems implicated in archival discovery and delivery


While we ask prospective participants to provide 250-word topic abstracts, we recognize that topics may evolve in focus as their group engages in the working meeting. We do not require topics to be fully fleshed out, but we ask contributors to identify areas for exploration as they explore the ideas or focus described in the proposed topic. The working meeting and collaborative writing are intended to allow groups to develop their topics over the course of the working meeting.


If you have a proposal for a group but have not identified fellow participants, please indicate this in your proposal. The project team and participant advisors will help identify collaborators as needed, and encourage potential collaborators to share prospective topics in a shared spreadsheet. The project team also invites prospective participants to join an “office hours” teleconference on Wednesday, February 24, 2021 at 11:00 AM PST/2:00 PM EST (registration required) to get early feedback on potential topics or to ask questions about the working meetings or application process.


Selected participants are asked to commit to a series of four two-hour synchronous working meetings held over six weeks, and to both meet and work asynchronously with their groups to produce an initial draft of their written contribution during this period. Written contributions will be compiled following this period for inclusion in the project’s handbook on archival discovery and delivery; as such, we ask prospective participants to agree to license their contributions under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC-BY) version 4.0. All participants are also expected to follow the project’s Community Agreements and Code of Conduct in all project activities.


More information on the Lighting the Way Working Meeting can be found on the project website. If you have any questions or feedback about the process, please contact the project team at, or Mark Matienzo, Project Director, at


This project was made possible in part by the Institute of Museum and Library Services, through grant LG-35-19-0012-19. The IMLS is the primary source of federal support for the nation’s libraries and museums. To learn more, visit


Mark A. MATIENZO | |  +1 (650) 683-5769
Assistant Director for Digital Strategy and Access
Digital Library Systems and Services, Stanford University Libraries
My pronouns are they/them




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