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AMICO Logo Art Museum Image Consortium: enabling educational use of museum multimedia
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University Testbed Project
Research Objectives

Identify who uses the AMICO Library and why

  • What is current practice in image based research and teaching? Who uses images now?
  • What is anticipated to be better enabled or less well enabled with the AMICO Library?
  • What uses are required? What additional uses are desired? Can degrees of relative benefits from different kinds of uses be determined?
  • Over the course of the project, who used the AMICO Library for what kinds of purposes?

Determine how the AMICO Library is accessed and used

  • How is the resource discovered? What are the minimum metadata?
  • What kind of overview is needed of the entire resource? What kinds of access are required?
  • Is this access provided in the AMICO data structure as proposed/delivered? Are retrieval requirements met? What additional data enhancement is required to ensure accessibility?
  • Is the content of the AMICO Library sufficiently consistent to enable use?
  • What kinds of additional links and references would be valuable?

Increase understanding of user needs for teaching and research use of the AMICO Library and the systems architectures needed to support them

  • How are items in the Library being retrieved, collated, analyzed and re-presented?
  • Does the delivery architecture enable the required uses? If not, why?
  • What changes are required to enable desired uses? What tools are needed and by whom?
  • What strategies could encourage or increase the use of the AMICO Library?
  • What are the concrete requirements for images in different applications?
How can the AMICO Library best be delivered?
  • Is licensed access more cost effective and valuable than local content acquisition?
  • Is the use of an existing distributor the most appropriate way to reach academic users?
  • What are acceptable pricing structures? What are appropriate license periods?
  • What is the best way to integrate the AMICO Library with existing campus resources?
  • Are there reasons to store data locally? How could the distribution mechanism facilitate this?
  • How was sound and motion image content used? Are its distribution requirements different?
Who decides to acquire such a resource and what information do they need?
  • How can these people be reached to make them aware of the AMICO Library?
  • How are decisions made to acquire digital resources? How are potential acquisitions assessed? How can AMICO support the decision-making process?
  • Where does the value in the AMICO Library reside? How can it be enhanced?
  • What do decision makers in the AMICO Library's acquisition value most highly?
  • What are appropriate/acceptable pricing structures or strategies?
  • Are there appropriate ways of 'chunking' the Library to make it more attractive to users?
Establish if the license terms proposed by the AMICO Consortium are acceptable
  • Can the terms of the license be administered within the university context?
  • Are the desired uses enabled by the license?
  • Are there required changes? What are the priorities for these?
  • What additional licenses would the university community like to see offered? for alumni? families? etc.?
  • Were the public web site thumbnails and tombstone data used to support the curriculum development process (enabling faculty to plan to use the Library prior to licensing)?
  • Is the public web site seen as a barrier to future licensing?
Design means for user feedback and dialogue with AMICO members
  • How can AMICO best discover, on a on-going basis, what the user community needs?
  • How can we encourage scholarly information flow from users to AMICO member museums?
  • What kinds of mechanisms can we put in place to enable collaboration between academic users and museum staff in areas of mutual interest?
  • What role should the distributor play in mediating between AMICO and the users of the AMICO Library?
  • What role might users play in an AMICO General Meeting?
  • What kinds of support is essential, or desirable from an AMICO distributor?
Understand user priorities for content development, and design AMICO strategies to meet these needs
  • Is the AMICO Library as useful research resource?
  • What are the best strategies for reaching 'critical mass'?
  • What are user priorities for library development?
  • How is depth of documentation valued in comparison with breadth of coverage?
  • Should AMICO be focused on developing a broader membership base, or in encouraging greater coverage of the collections of its existing members?
  • What multi-media data content is desirable and useful?
  • Is intensive content development in particular subject or disciplines needed to enable required uses?
  • How high a priority is the content of museum collections from outside North America?


In June of 2005, the members of the Art Museum Image Consortium voted to dissolve their collaboration. This site remains online for archival reasons.