LSU Researchers Publish Geolocation Dataset of all U.S. Galleries, Libraries, Archives and Museums
September 21, 2023
Latest milestone for project “GLAM” assists cultural heritage institutions protect their valuable collections from storms, climate change, and other risk factors.
BATON ROUGE – Cultural heritage institutions, including galleries, libraries, archives and museums, or GLAMs, are being impacted by climate change. About 56 percent of these institutions reported increased damage to collections due to water or moisture between 2017-2019. Of that damage, about 10 percent was the result of natural disasters. As storm season ramps up in the south, LSU researchers reached a significant milestone in a research project aimed at assisting our nation’s historical/natural/scientific/cultural collections remain safe and intact.
Over the past year, the collaborative Providing Risk of The Environment’s Changing Climate Threats for Galleries, Libraries, Archives & Museums (PROTECCT-GLAM) research team compiled and verified a unique dataset, including the georeferences for the majority of U.S. Galleries, Libraries, Archives and Museums (GLAMs). The original data sources included the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS), the National Center for Education Statistics, the Archives RepoData project, and the Department of Defense.
After compiling the source data, the PROTECCT-GLAM project team employed over 35 undergraduate and graduate students to manually verify and update physical location of the GLAMs. The resulting dataset includes nearly 74,000 entries and represents the first known directory of all U.S. GLAM locations. The dataset is freely available for use via the LSU Digital Commons and accessible on the project website: http://protecct-glam.lsu.edu. The PROTECCT-GLAM team also provided access to a form for GLAMs to submit feedback and revisions to the dataset which will be updated monthly through 2024 and quarterly thereafter.
Posting the dataset is a milestone for the PROTECCT-GLAM project, an IMLS-funded research project led by LSU School of Information Studies Associate Professor Edward Benoit, III, and LSU Department of Geography & Anthropology Associate Professor Jill Trepanier with collaborator Arizona State University’s School of Sustainability Associate Professor Jennifer Vanos. The research team will utilize this dataset in developing a categorical risk assessment scale for climate change threats to GLAMs during the next year. In 2025, the research team will host a national institute to further identify climate change challenges for GLAMs and prioritize future research.
The project leverages this dataset of cultural heritage intuitions within the United States including art museums, children’s museums, history museums, natural history museums, science museums, zoos and nature centers, historical societies, historical sites, college and university archives, community archives, corporate archives, governmental archives, religious archives, tribal archives, academic libraries, public libraries, school libraries, special libraries and government libraries. Next steps include the research team using geographic information system analysis to identify GLAM-specific risks, including tropical cyclone wind and/or flooding damage, inland precipitation and extreme heat signatures. They will use further statistical estimation of risk and visualization to develop a comprehensive risk assessment scale that will allow institutions to properly identify their climate change-related risks, create emergency management plans, develop short- and long-term mitigation plans and prioritize funding opportunities.
The LSU School of Information Studies (SIS) is the home of the Master of Library and Information Science, which is the only program accredited by the American Library Association in the state of Louisiana. In addition to the online MLIS program, SIS offers entirely online graduate certificates in Archival Studies, Records & Information Management, and School Librarianship. SIS also offers an undergraduate minor in digital studies and several ILC courses. SIS is a member of the iSchools, a group of Information Schools dedicated to advancing the information field, and is part of the LSU College of Human Sciences & Education.
The College of Human Sciences & Education (CHSE) is a nationally accredited division of Louisiana State University. The college is comprised of the School of Education, the School of Information Studies, the School of Kinesiology the School of Leadership & Human Resource Development, the School of Social Work, and the University Laboratory School. These combined schools offer 8 undergraduate degree programs, 18 graduate programs, and 7 online graduate degree and/or certificate programs, enrolling more than 1,900 undergraduate and 1,120 graduate students. The College is committed to achieving the highest standards in teaching, research, and service and is committed to improving quality of life across the lifespan.
About the LSU College of Humanities & Social Sciences
The LSU College of Humanities & Social Sciences positions students, faculty, and staff to be visionary leaders in their respective fields, a tradition of excellence that began with the college’s inception in 1908. For more news and information about the LSU College of Humanities & Social Sciences, visit hss.lsu.edu.
About the School of Sustainability, Arizona State University
The School of Sustainability at Arizona State University is part of the new College of Global Futures. The school is addressing some of the most critical challenges of our time, with a focus on finding real-world solutions to environmental, economic, and social challenges. The School’s course of study emphasizes experiential learning, research with faculty, corporate and K-12 work, community service, and leadership development. The knowledge and solutions that are created today within the school will shape our quality of life as well as future generations to make our world more sustainable. For news and more information visit https://schoolofsustainability.asu.edu.