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Royal Albert Memorial Museum & Art Gallery

Open access strategies through research-led collaborations

University of Exeter

The Royal Albert Memorial Museum & Art Gallery (RAMM) is a museum and art gallery in Exeter, UK, with significant and diverse collections in areas like zoology, anthropology, fine art, local and overseas archaeology and geology. Founded in 1868, RAMM now holds a collection of over a million items, of which a small percentage is on permanent public display.

Funded by the AHRC, RAMM’s partnership with the GLAM-E Lab focuses on how to design and implement a robust open access strategy for its diverse range of collections. Since 2021, our research has explored questions related to digital and intellectual property restitution, 3D digitization and intellectual property, and how to build open access methods into sound business strategies. Our collaboration has led to the publication of RAMM’s collections under the CC0 public domain dedication to Wikimedia Commons, as well as Exeter City Council and RAMM adopting an open access strategy for public domain collections.

In 2023, we began a new partnership with Wikimedia UK to bring a Wikipedian-in-Residence to RAMM to grow a Wikipedia volunteering program and host Wikipedia Edit-a-thons around the collection.  Future partnership plans include organising a regional open access network and campaign for collections holders in the UK’s Devon South West, as well as a toolkit for small- to medium-sized organisations to publish their own collections in open access.  

You can find these and other resources in the tools section.