More collections to join NZ Museums through DigitalNZ

As part of the redevelopment of NZ Museums, we’re changing how collections are shared on the site.

NZ Museums was launched in 2008 to enable small museums and galleries to have an online presence and share their digitised collections to a wider audience. Currently, this collection and directory site is home to over 95,000 digitised collection items from over 200 museums across the motu, and contains directory information for over 400 museums, galleries and whare taonga nationwide.

Through this project, we’re aiming to better serve the sector, including iwi, hapu and whanau. A more informative, sector-driven platform will enable better visibility of more of the collections distributed across Aotearoa’s communities.

Participants at one of our co-design workshops for the NZ Museums redevelopment project, September 2021

Contributors to NZ Museums currently use the eHive collection management system to share their objects on the platform. By moving to partner with National Library’s collection aggregator DigitalNZ, organisations using other collection management systems will also be able to share collections on NZ Museums.

This change will create a richer picture of our collections across the country in one place. We’re expecting to increase the number of objects on NZ Museums to approximately 1.3 million using DigitalNZ.

Current NZ Museums contributors need to sign up as a DigitalNZ Content Partner to continue sharing their collections on the site. If you currently share your collections on NZ Museums look out for an email from us detailing what you need to do.

Latest objects shared on the NZ Museums website, as at 27 September 2021

We would like all current contributors to be on board before our launch in early 2022.

The FAQ below has some more information about this partnership. If you have any further questions please reach out to NSTP Content and Resource Advisers Mandy and Emma.

NZ Museums FAQs

Why is the NZ Museums site being refreshed?

The potential of online platforms has evolved significantly since NZ Museums was first launched and our investment will create a better resource for the museum sector, and a more intuitive platform for those who want to access your collections. This is an opportunity to develop a site that is inclusive of iwi, hapū and whānau and reflective of the concept of Mana Taonga.

With this redevelopment we will be able to bring in collections from more museums, galleries and whare taonga – not just users of the eHive collection management system.

What other benefits will there be for participating organisations?

As well as being designed to be a go-to site for researchers, educators, genealogists, sector kaimahi and volunteers, we’ll be incorporating some new features in the site, such as:

  • Filtered website traffic analytics that will allow you to determine the number of hits your collection receives across a date range
  • A magazine style homepage that will be able to highlight collection objects that relate to events and themes
  • A refreshed directory of the 400 museums and galleries across Aotearoa.

What happens after I sign up as a DigitalNZ Content Partner?

  • Once you have agreed to participate, DigitalNZ will work with you on the technical options for connecting your digital material to the DigitalNZ services (such as the search engine and API)
  • DigitalNZ will send you access to their staging website so you can check how your content is displaying
  • Your collection will be shared on DigitalNZ immediately and on the new NZ Museums site when it is relaunched in 2022.

Can we still charge for high resolution images under the DigitalNZ commercial and non-commercial use content partner options?

DigitalNZ and NZ Museums will only display thumbnail images, not the high resolution originals from your collection management system. This is regardless of choosing the commercial or non-commercial API options. Your organisation’s directory listing will be able to highlight services such as availability of high resolution images on request.

What happens if I don’t want to become a DigitalNZ Content Partner?

If you currently share your collection on NZ Museums but don’t want to sign up as a DigitalNZ Content Partner just let us know. You can chose to participate at any time in the future.

Current eHive users will still be able to share your collections online through the eHive website, but your collection will be no longer visible on NZ Museum when the new site goes live.

How can I contribute to the NZ Museum redevelopment project?

We’ll be seeking feedback throughout the project from the sector. Sign up to the NSTP newsletter to keep up to date about the project.

You can also contact NSTP Content and Resource Advisers Mandy and Emma with any feedback or questions.

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