Catchplus > about catchplus

Cultural heritage is everywhere, and constitutes our collective memory. In order to ensure access to our heritage now and in the future, it is necessary to disclose collections by digitizing them.

The main purpose of CATCHPlus is to valorise scientific research results to usable tools and services for the entire Dutch heritage sector.
This software leads to better disclosure and larger accessibility of collections from heritage institutions. The unique cooperation between large heritage institutions, univerisities and companies in CATCHPlus, creates a new crossroad of IT and heritage.
The products from CATCHPlus promote cooperation and coordination in the information infrastructure of the heritage sector.

From scientific research to applications
CATCHPlus builds on the running programme “Continuous Access To Cultural Heritage” (CATCH), ran by N.W.O. (The Netherlands Organization for Scientific Research). In CATCH, computer scientists, the humanities and the cultural heritage sector have set up a unique collaboration with collection managing institutions. Innovation, transferability and cooperation are central issues in this project.

CATCH started in 2004 and a number of subprojects has finished. In CATCHPlus, the prototypes and demos from eight of the finished projects will be converted to reliable tools. Software that is solid and can be used in multiple institutions.

Accessibility and interoperability
CATCHPlus develops software that optimizes searching and navigating in cultural heritage data. CATCHPlus products will be imbedded within the institutions themselves, as well as in the interaction between institution and public. They are useful for the involved institutions as well as for other collection managers.
This development is an important step to one Digital Collection the Netherlands, and promotes cooperation and coherency in the heritage sector.

Subprojects and central structure
Software tools are developed in subprojects, ran within the institutions. These tools fit the daily practice of the participating institution and must have been tested successfully in at least one other participating institution.
The usability of these tools will be tested by an independent user committee, existing of representatives of varying heritage institutions that aren’t involved in CATCH or CATCHPlus in any other way.
Besides this, a central infrastructure and two common services will be developed in the project.

CATCHPlus is a 3 year programme (2009-2011) and is conducted in a cooperation of nine heritage institutions and two academic institutions. The project receives funding from the Interdepartmental Programme Implementation ICT Agenda (PRIMA), the Ministry of Education, Culture and Science (OCW) and the Netherlands Organization for Scientific Research (N.W.O.).