2020 Digitizing Hidden Collections Symposium

2020 Digitizing Hidden Collections Symposium

Date: November 11-12, following the 2020 Digital Library Federation (DLF) Forum
Location: The Renaissance Baltimore Harborplace Hotel, Baltimore, MD


About the Event

Since 2015, with the generous support of The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, the Council on Library and Information Resources (CLIR) Digitizing Hidden Collections program has awarded approximately $4 million annually to archives, historical societies, libraries, museums, and other collecting organizations to support the digitization of rare and unique materials holding significance for research, learning, and the public good. In 2020, in cooperation with CLIR’s Digital Library Federation (DLF) program, CLIR will host a two-day event for grant recipients to share lessons from their project work. Recipients’ collective experiences will create opportunities for reflection on the current state and future potential of digitization practice in collecting institutions, including how the digital cultural record can better reflect the diversity of human thought and experience, how law and ethics affect strategies for access, and how technologies and standards can improve discovery and learning.


The symposium’s call for proposals will be released in March 2020. Scholarship support will be made available to project workers who are contingent employees, early-career professionals, and students. Information about registration and these scholarships will be made available on CLIR’s website in early summer 2020. Papers presented at the symposium will be compiled into a proceedings to be published by CLIR in the spring of 2021.

The symposium, an Affiliated Event of the DLF Forum (November 9-11, 2020), will begin the afternoon of Wednesday, November 11, 2020 and conclude  by 6pm Thursday, November 12.

Call for Planning Committee Nominations and Volunteers

CLIR is currently seeking nominations for individuals interested in assisting with the planning of the 2020 Digitizing Hidden Collections Symposium from January – November, 2020. Self-nominations are encouraged!

Committee members will have the opportunity to contribute to up to two areas of planning: program creation, scholarship selection, local arrangements, inclusivity/participant support, and sponsorship. Former Hidden Collections project participants and interested members of the wider community are welcome to participate in planning and to attend the event. The submission form will remain open until January 6, 2020 and notifications for selection to the committee will be made in later in the month.

Nominate someone!

Stay connected

Sign up for the CLIR grants mailing list to receive email updates about the symposium before and after the event!


The 2020 symposium is the third gathering related to CLIR’s Hidden Collections programs. Read the Proceedings of the 2015 Symposium, which was the capstone event to the seven-year Cataloging Hidden Special Collections and Archives program, and view the agenda from the 2010 meeting.


Contact hiddencollections [at] clir.org with questions about symposium.