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Grant number like: PD-50034-14

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University of Hawaii at Manoa (Honolulu, HI 96822-2247)
Andrea Berez (Project Director: December 2013 to June 2019)

Documenting Endangered Languages - Preservation
Preservation and Access

[Grant products]

$137,317 (approved)
$137,217 (awarded)

Grant period:
8/1/2014 – 8/31/2018

Funding details:
Original grant (2014) $122,317
Supplement (2016) $15,000
Supplement (2019) $-100

Making Pacific Language Materials Discoverable: Identifying and Describing Indigenous Languages

The improved discovery of materials in or about Micronesian, Polynesian, and Melanesian languages held in the Pacific Collection at the Hamilton Library of the University of Hawai'i at Manoa. The applicant would develop precise catalog descriptors for approximately 1,100 endangered Pacific languages; complete cataloging for nearly 10,000 items; and make this information accessible to language communities, documentary linguists, other catalogers, and the public.

We propose to greatly increase the descriptive metadata for all the Pacific language material within the University of Hawaii at Manoa Library Pacific Collection by adequately describing the languages represented in the materials. At present, the Collection is inadequately described for language. The geographic region covered by the collection is among the most linguistically diverse in the world, which means that language information is especially crucial to the usefulness of the collection. We propose to ensure that all Pacific language material in the UHM Library Pacific Collection (~10K items) has adequate and consistent levels of description according to three standards: (i) MARC Code List for Languages, (ii) Library of Congress Subject Headings, and (iii) ISO 639-3 language codes. The first 2 are considered to be best practices for American libraries, while the third, ISO 639-3, is considered by linguists to be the gold standard for language description. Together, these 3 standards of descriptive metadata will drastically increase the discoverability of Pacific language material in the Collection, the most comprehensive collection of Pacific materials in the world.