Digitization and access to cultural heritage collections: understanding the law and practice

Short Course – Thursday 19 September 10:00 – 17:00

Executive Business Centre, room  EB206

>> Participants can access all course material here (password protected)

The material available in cultural heritage collections represents an immense wealth, which can be used for a myriad of purposes, ranging from educational benefits to commercial re-use in products so diverse as advertisements, documentaries, and feature film productions. Moreover, digital networked technologies open up new possibilities to access and use cultural heritage material. One of the key challenges in realising such potential is represented by the right clearance of this material. Risk-averse corporate policies deter from re-use. As a result, much material lay dormant in cultural heritage collections.

This short course, held by leading academics and professionals in the field of copyright and cultural institutions, will address the law and practice of digitisation and access to cultural heritage. The morning session will focus on the legal framework, with particular emphasis on the legal requirements for copyright clearance and orphan works. In the afternoon, leading examples from on-the-field experience across different categories of works (audiovisual, books, sound recording and fine art) will be presented and discussed.

10:00 – 13:00 – Exploring the Legal Framework

  • Legal issues of digitization: making sense of “open access” – Andrea Wallace
  • Dormant collections (and how to wake them up) – Claudy Op den Kamp
  • Orphan works, diligent search and the EnDOW platform – Maurizio Borghi
  • Reputational risk in the archive: a discussion – Melanie Brown

14:00 – 17:00 – Managing Collections

  • Film collections – Leontien Bout / Annabelle Shaw
  • Books, magazines, newspapers and sound recording – Ben White
  • Fine art collections and images – Andrea Wallace

The lecturers

Andrea Wallace is Lecturer in Law at the University of Exeter, specializing in copyright, cultural institutions and the public domain. Her projects in this field include Display at Your Own Risk: an experimental exhibition of digital cultural heritage (with Ronan Deazley, 2016).

Maurizio Borghi is Professor of Law at Bournemouth University and author of Copyright and Mass Digitization (Oxford University Press: 2013, with Stavroula Karapapa). He has been the project leader of EnDOW, a project on making orphan works clearance easier for cultural institutions across Europe.

Claudy Op den Kamp is Senior Lecturer in Film at Bournemouth University. She is the author of The Greatest Films Never Seen. The Film Archive and the Copyright Smokescreen (Amsterdam University Press: 2018)

Melanie Brown is PhD Researcher at Bournemouth University, working on a research project on copyright and film archives.

Ben White is Head of Intellectual Property at the British Library and a leading expert on copyright and libraries

Annabelle Shaw is Copyright & Licensing Manager at BFI

Leontien Bout is Copyright Officer at EYE Film Museum in Amsterdam

Venue and accommodation

The Executive Business Centre is located in Bournemouth, at 5 minutes walk from the train and bus station. When leaving the station, head to “Town Centre” and “Seafront”. You will see the building on your right (directions here).

Trains from London leave at every hour (.05) and half-past hour (.35) from Waterloo Station, and take about 2 hours (direction: Weymouth or Poole). (See train times and tickets here or here).

If you arrive by car, please ask the organizers to book a parking space for you at the Executive Business Centre. However, please note that parking space is limited.

The lovely seaside resort of Bournemouth offers a broad variety of accommodation. The following are in close range from the Executive Business Centre:

The Miramar Hotel

The Green House Hotel

Ramada Encore Hotel

Best Western Hotel Royale

How to apply

The course is free to attend but spaces are limited and registration is required. Please apply via Eventbrite by clicking here:


For more details and for information about the course please email Maurizio Borghi <mborghi@bournemouth.ac.uk> or Claudy Op den Kamp <copdenkamp@bournemouth.ac.uk>