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DLF Assessment Interest Group

The DLF Assessment Interest Group (AIG), founded in 2014, seeks to engage the community in developing best practices and guidelines for various kinds of digital library assessment. This wiki will be a central location for documentation and collection of resources to assist those seeking to assess their digital libraries.

Working Groups

Active Groups

Former Groups


Research and cultural heritage institutions are, as a matter of course, providing online access to converted and born-digital scholarly and cultural content. As the amount of that content continues to grow, there is an increased need to strategically standardize our assessment efforts.

The DLF AIG is concerned with:

  • determining how to measure the impact of digital collections;
  • developing areas of commonality and benchmarks in how we measure collections across various platforms;
  • understanding cost and benefit of digital collections; and
  • exploring how can we best collect, analyze, communicate, and share such information effectively across our various stakeholders—from collection managers to scholars.

The DLF AIG was born in the spring following the 2013 DLF Forum after a working session called “Hunting for Best Practices in Library Assessment” garnered over 50 volunteers to continue the discussion after the conference, and a second working session on altmetrics was also met with huge interest. A Digital Library Assessment Google Group was established to provide a space for practitioners to discuss assessment efforts.

At the following 2014 DLF Forum, an assessment panel discussed a new NISO initiative to develop standards for altmetrics, a new web-based cost estimation tool for digitization, and both qualitative and quantitative results from digital library user studies. The panel, like the working group the year before, was followed by a lively discussion about how to further the development of best practices for digital library assessment. Again, many community members volunteered to continue the discussion, and four working groups formed in November 2014. These groups were tasked with developing to best practices centered in the assessment of digital libraries, in the areas of user studies, analytics, cost, and citations as outlined in the Digital Library Assessment Framework.

Each of these four groups worked to develop white papers and tools, which were presented at the 2015 DLF Forum. For more information on these working groups and the status of AIG at this time, see Joyce Chapman, Jody DeRidder, and Santi Thompson's article on the first year of AIG's work in "Developing Best Practices in Digital Library Assessment: Year One Update" in D-Lib Magazine's November/December 2015 issue (Volume 21, Number 11/12).

During the 2015 DLF Forum, interested members also discussed the formation of two new groups, focused on metadata and cultural assessment. These two groups formally began in the months following the 2015 Forum and, along with the analytics, costs, and user studies groups, will present updates at the 2016 DLF Forum in Milwaukee.

Archived Documentation

As AIG projects conclude, they are archived with the Open Science Framework.

Get Involved

To take part in the conversation, join the Digital Library Assessment Google Group, which is open to anyone interested in learning about or collaborating on the improvement of digital library assessment.