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If You Build It, Will They Come? Participant Involvement in Digital Libraries (22 Jul 2004)
Ideally, participants should be involved from the earliest stages of building a DL. The short-term benefits of early and continuous involvement are that the infrastructure, content, and services meet the immediate strengths, needs, experiences, and interests of participants. Additionally, the DL can become responsible for sustaining its own growth at an earlier stage. In the long-term, continued involvement can create a sense of trust in participants, leading to long-term commitments. In order to achieve this continued involvement, DLs invest time, money and human capital. At the same time, they also need to acknowledge and reward participants' investment of time and effort (discussed in more detail below). Two key challenges include: being responsive to participants' needs while progressing steadily through the DL building process and scaling human-intensive development processes or services.
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