The Victoria & Albert Museum “Persistent Identifiers for the Humanities (workshop report)”, 20th January 2017…

“… the British Library and the DateCite organisation (as part of the THOR project) organised a workshop before Christmas on this issue of ‘Persistent Identifier Services for the Humanities’.

It was apparent from the discussions in the workshop that the implementation of this infrastructure in the humanities is still very much in its infancy in all institutions. Some of the basic concepts inherited from scientific research do not seem to map directly across. For example, do humanities’ researchers consider their source material ‘data’. Or should we even be referring to ‘data’ as a ‘dataset’? It is not immediately obvious what the distinction between the two terms is. Is an individual museum object a dataset or is a set of museum objects a dataset in the same way as a set of data points in scientific research can be?

A separate point of discussion is how to distinguish between the physical object, its digitised version, its associated catalogue record and different versions of this record, (as knowledge is accumulated/revised) as this is not currently clear in DataCite. Although a similar situation was mentioned in the sciences with ice-core samples, where different digital datasets continue to be published from the same physical ice-core samples.”