Strategies for Data Migration in the Age of CCO and VRA Core 4.0

Presented at the Annual Conference of the Visual Resources Association, March 30th, 2007


Johanna Bauman, Bard Graduate Center
Jan Eklund, University of California Berkeley (Moderator)

The publication of Cataloging Cultural Objects (CCO) and the upcoming release of the VRA Core 4.0 represent significant milestones for the visual resources community, but these developments come with a host of challenges for image collections seeking to upgrade their existing databases to conform to the new standards. Chief among the challenges for these collections is moving from item-level cataloging in a flat structure to implementing related work and image records in a relational environment. Depending on the nature of the database, this transition will often mean migrating legacy data from a flat system into a relational one.

The purpose of this session is to first address the problem of data migration from a theoretical perspective, and then to provide a series of case studies showing how the problem has been dealt with in a variety of real-world contexts. The goal is not to present a one-size-fits-all solution, but rather to demonstrate a variety of strategies of data migration in different contexts ranging from small visual resources collections with minimal support to a large museum with an extensive infrastructure. The case studies will endeavor to show both the successes and necessary compromises made in the course of the migration and how these have affected the final outcome and the ongoing processes.


Trish Rose-Sandler, Metadata Librarian, UCSD, Geisel Library
Introduction to Data Migration

Johanna Bauman, Visual Media Resources Curator, Bard Graduate Center
From Flat to Relational: Data Migration for a Small Collection

Susan Jane Williams, Data Specialist, Scholars Resource; Independent Consultant and Developer
"If I knew then what I know now"

Billy Kwan, Associate Museum Librarian/Systems, Image Library, The Metropolitan Museum of Art
Implementing a Digital Asset Management System at the Met