I-Media-Cities is the initiative of 9 European Film Libraries, 5 research institutions, 2 technological providers and a specialist of digital business models to share access to and valorise audiovisual (AV) content from their collections for research purposes in a wide range of social sciences (sociology, anthropology, urban planning, etc). The project revolves around cities in European history and identity. A huge quantity of fictional and non-fictional AV works (from the end of the 19th century onwards) in their collections describe cities in all aspects, including physical transformation and social dynamics. Such material could prove of enormous value to scholars in different fields of study. I-Media-Cities plans integration and technical development work to push interoperability among 9 archives and generate two types of e-environments to be used by researchers and innovators for research and other creative purposes. This will allow new approaches to research in social sciences and unleash creativity, in new forms of delivery and consumption of that content which the creative industry would be able to propose for instance in tourism or in the cultural economy. To make that possible, the project relies on collaboration among three main components: a) FHI (Film Holding Institutions); b) research institutions in different areas of social sciences; c) expertise in exploitation processes of digital content. At the end of the project, we will deliver a digital content access platform (interoperable and multilingual), made available to a growing community of researchers and creatives Europe-wide to push the boundaries of what we can learn, through AV material on cities, on European history and identity. The legacy of I-Media-Cities will be a new model for research on digital sources (applicable also to other subject areas), plus appropriate exploitation plans to consolidate and expand the platform into the European reference initiative on AV digital content.
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