University of Florida: The University of Florida, University of Puerto Rico Libraries and the Digital Library of the Caribbean Receive Grant Award to Digitize Threatened Newspaper Microfilm of the Caribbean. “This three year project totaling $434,124, Film on a Boat: Digitizing Historical Newspapers of the Caribbean, was one of 16 from a pool of 100 applicants and received the second highest awarded amount from the Council of Library and Information Resources, Digitizing Hidden Collection Program, with funding from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. The grant award will support a continuing partnership between the George A. Smathers Libraries at the University of Florida and the University of Puerto Rico (UPR)-Rio Piedras Campus Libraries to digitize each institution’s unique, hidden holdings of Caribbean newspapers on master microfilm. The team, partners of the Digital Library of the Caribbean, will digitize and make freely available 800,000 pages of pre-1923 Caribbean newspapers.”
University of North Carolina: Libraries Partner on Open-Access Publication Series. “The University of North Carolina Press, the Institute for the Study of the Americas and the University Libraries published the first title in their collaborative open-access series, Studies in Latin America. Tropical Tongues: Language Ideologies, Endangerment, and Minority Languages in Belize by Jennifer Carolina Gómez Menjívar and William Noel Salmon is expected to be followed up by another monograph published this year. The new series will increase the availability of scholarly literature focused on the social sciences in Latin America and the Caribbean. As an open-access series, the books will be made available digitally to a wide audience, particularly for use in classroom settings.”
The Daily Herald: St. Eustatius to become part of International Digital Archive. “Once the main destination for the African slave trade in the eighteenth century, St. Eustatius has a fascinating history that remains largely undiscovered on the world stage. But this may change since Angela Sutton from Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tennessee, visited the Historical Gem in her quest to collect and digitise records that could enable descendants on Statia or anywhere else in the world to connect with their enslaved ancestors.” I know nothing about St. Eustatius, which the locals apparently call “Statia”. Its history is somewhat confusing but I can tell you it’s a beautiful place; Caribbean Travel has an article and overview.
Curacao Chronicle: Tropical Dutch Biodiversity Now In One Database. “Naturalis Biodiversity Center (NBC) is proud to announce the launch of the Dutch Caribbean Species Register… For the first time ever, NBC presents a complete overview of the known biodiversity (animals, plants, fungi) from the Dutch Caribbean: over 7.500 species. This online database is the result of an effort of Naturalis Biodiversity Center – the biodiversity research center and Dutch national natural history museum- to gather all relevant publications on the biodiversity and natural history of the six islands of the Dutch Caribbean: Aruba, Bonaire, Curaçao, Saba, Sint Eustatius and Sint Maarten.”
Phys.org: Climate scientists create Caribbean drought atlas. “Cornell atmospheric scientists have developed the first-of-its-kind, high-resolution Caribbean drought atlas, with data going back to 1950. Concurrently, the researchers confirmed the region’s 2013-16 drought was the most severe in 66 years due to consistently higher temperatures – a hint that climate change is to blame. Because of its topographic complexity, the new atlas delivers critical research data by providing a historical climate backdrop.”
St. Lucia News Online: Caribbean’s first online human rights database launched. “The region’s first online database that will enable a standard system for capturing, collating and reporting human rights violations, has been launched. Developed by the Caribbean Vulnerable Communities Coalition (CVC), the Shared Incident Database (SID) is an advanced, user-friendly, web-based technology that will strengthen evidence-based advocacy for more just policies and programmes in the Caribbean’s HIV response.”
A large collection of Dutch Caribbean history has gone online. “The Dutch Caribbean digital heritage project, made possible through a subsidy of the Dutch Ministry of Education, Culture and Science OCW, was an extensive endeavour that involved the sorting and selecting of a whole lot of material of which some pieces were very fragile because they are very old. Project Leader Innovation and Projects of the Leiden University Dr. Saskia van Bergen mentioned a few figures in her presentation during the symposium in Leiden: 2,600 book titles, 11,000 articles, 450 magazines, 300 manuscripts were meticulously scanned by a professional company in Lisse, the Netherlands.”