Introduction to Our Project

This blog site, Fenno-Ugrica, is an information channel of the Digitization Project of Kindred Languages (active 2012-2015) and Minority Languages Project (active in 2016.)

Within the Digitization Project of Kindred Languages, the National Library of Finland realized the pilot project goals for digitizing Finno-Ugrian materials during the years 2012 and 2013. During the project, the National Library of Finland will produce the research material and infrastructure required by the Kone Foundation Language Programme and will also oversee cooperation in Finland and abroad.

During the Pilot Project in 2012-2013, the selected materials included approximately 17,000 pages of publications in the Ingrian, Mari and Mordvinic and Veps languages, comprising currently of more than 150 monographs, most of which are textbooks and dictionaries. In addition to these monographs, nearly 22,000 pages of newspapers in the Mari and Mordvinic languages, published mainly in the 1920s and 1930s, will be digitized. These materials were published online during the first-half of 2013.

The Finno-Ugrian materials in this project belong to the collections of the National Library of Russia (St. Petersburg). This material was digitized in St Petersburg and delivered to the National Library of Finland in a digital format. On behalf of the both libraries, National Library Resource, an umbrella organisation providing copyright services for the Russian library sector, has conducted a research on the copyrights. The material digitized in the pilot project will be made openly available through the publication system maintained by the National Library of Finland, based on the open source DSpace software. See the Fenno-Ugrica collection here. (The collection will be released in early June for public).

In 2014–15, the National Library of Finland implemented the continuation phase of the Digitization Project of Kindred Languages. The continuation project produced digitised materials in the Uralic languages as well as their development tools to support linguistic research and citizen science. The resulting materials will constitute the largest resource for the Uralic languages in the world. Through this project, researchers will gain access to corpora which they have not been able to study before and to which all users will have open access regardless of their place of residence. The materials will be made available to both researchers and citizens in Fenno-Ugrica.

Withing the continuation project we digitized and made available approximately 1050 monograph titles in Erzya, Moksha, Udmurt, Komi-Permyak, Komi-Zyrian, Meadow and Hill Mari, Selkup, Nenets, Khanty, Mansi, Karelian and Ingrian as well as 51 newspapers titles in Komi, Udmurt and the Mordvinic languages. The materials to be digitised have been selected in cooperation with Finnish researchers so that they will support the study of the Finno-Ugric languages both at home and abroad.

The Minority Languages Project produces materials printed in minority languages and material refinement tools to support linguistic research and citizen science. In this context, minority languages refer to Mordvin, Permic, Mari, Nenets, Yiddish, Sami and Romani languages.

The project digitises linguistic materials to which researchers have not previously had access. The materials will be made available for both researchers and the general public in the Fenno-Ugrica collection. The Minority Languages Project is a sub-project of the Kone Foundation -funded Language programme.

During the project, documentation of language will be implemented by digitising materials, finding out about copyrights related to the materials, making digitised materials openly available in the Fenno-Ugrica collection and refining data from language materials for use in third party systems.

During the one-year project, a total of 715 monograph titles will be digitised and made available for use. In all 52 titles of serial publications will be digitised during the project. According to the plan, there will be approximately 73,000 monograph pages and approximately 74,000 serial publication pages. In addition to printed materials, manuscripts in the archives will be the focus of the project; over 12,500 sheets will be digitised

The Digitisation Project of Kindred Languages has also produced the Uralica portal, which is a collaborative project developed by the National Library and funded by the Ministry of Education and Culture. It is an open-access data system for Finno-Ugric books, maps and recordings digitised at different libraries. At the moment Uralica contains about 6,000 links to digitised Finno-Ugric materials housed at several libraries.

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