Cataloging Cultural Objects and CDWA Lite: New Data Content and Data Format Standards for Art and Material Culture Information

Murtha Baca


Great  strides  were  made  during  the  1980s  and  1990s  in  the  development  of standards  for  art  and  cultural  heritage  information  in  the  anglophone  world. But what was still lacking in the first years of the twenty-first century was a data  content  (i.e.,  cataloging)  standard  for  cultural  heritage  information,  and  a technical format specifically designed for the communication and exchange of cultural heritage data in machine-readable form. This paper will provide a brief overview of cultural heritage data standards tools in the anglophone world, culminating  in  the  development  of  CCO  (Cataloging  Cultural  Objects),  a  set  of guidelines for describing cultural objects and their visual surrogates. It will also introduce  CDWA  (Categories  for  the  Description  of  Works  of Art)  Lite,  a  data format/technical  interchange  standard  for  expressing  and  sharing  CCO-compatible metadata records.

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