“Digitising Manuscripts – Safeguarding Cultural Diversity”

Herewith we announce that soon we will officially launch a Programme designed to preserve the rich diversity of manuscripts in Southeast Asia. The Programme that will prioritise the digitisation of endangered manuscripts is named Digital Repository of Endangered and Affected Manuscripts in Southeast Asia: DREAMSEA.

The DREAMSEA Programme includes two main activities: 1) digitising manuscripts; 2) developing a database that will incorporate all the manuscripts and be accessible to all. By way of digitisation the Programme aims to preserve the diversity of texts contained in manuscripts, while the database will give access to the digitised images for everyone, in particular students and scholars, so that they can use the knowledge in the texts to develop research projects and/or activities based in local cultures. The database will be presented as an integrated portal to gain access to the digitised manuscripts. It will be the first that assembles texts from Southeast Asian manuscript cultures into one database.

The DREAMSEA Programme is funded by ARCADIA – a charitable fund of Lisbet Rausing and Peter Baldwin – whose main commitment is to support organisations and institutions to preserve cultural heritage and guarantee open access to the results of the projects for everyone.

The DREAMSEA Programme will be coordinated by two Principal Investigators: Prof. Dr Jan van der Putten at the Centre for the Study of Manuscript Cultures of the University of Hamburg and Prof. Dr Oman Fathurahman at the Center for the Study of Islam and Society of the Syarif Hidayatullah State Islamic University in Jakarta.

Further information about the DREAMSEA Programme will be channelled through its official website and the social media mentioned below.



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