The Year of Premieres: Archive Going Online, PC Station in the Museum and English Website

Project "Forced Labor 1939-1945" is looking back on a year 2009 full of events.

News from Dec 31, 2009

The project team of "Forced Labor 1939-1945" looks back on a year full of successful premieres: the first version of the archive platform with nearly 600 life stories told by former forced laborers went online and evoked great response in international media. Also very pleasing was the fact that the internet portal unexpectedly was nominated for the Grimme-Online-Award (award for exceptional web content, design and creativity) in the category knowledge and education and at the same time the number of archive users constantly increased.

The first public presentation of the project and the going live of the first archive version in the German Historic Museum in January 2009 exceeded all expectations in the press. Since then, international press representatives (link to German content) reported on the digital archive for education and research. Simultaneously with the launch of the online archive, a multimedia PC-station with examples from the interview collection was opened in the German Historic Museum, being integral part of the permanent exhibition and also online available (only in German).

After the Grimme-Online-Award nomination in May 2009, the English version of the project website went online in November, in order to make the archive easier accessible and more popular internationally. Especially students, researchers and pupils started working with the online archive which was used in teaching in workshops and seminars as well as presented on conferences. On the occasion of the “Night of Sciences” ("Lange Nacht der Wissenschaften") in June 2009 at the Freie Universität Berlin, the public showed great interest in the archive.

In summer 2009, the Institute for East-European Studies at the Freie Universität Berlin organized an international summer school on the topic "Forced Labor 1939-1945. Remembrance and History" with participating students and researchers from Poland, Russia and Germany. During this event, a new search and indexing software for the interview collection was tested and presented.

Furthermore, conception and development of additional education material was promoted. In this process, short film biographies were designed, which will be provided on a video DVD, and a learning software was developed for use in school education in 2010.

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