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Posted on Wednesday March 21, 2018

Guiding values

We have three guiding values that, cut any one of us in half and you’ll see written through us. These values are present in everything we produce and can also be applied to how we work with each other.

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Everything we do should be ‘Usable’.

The formal bit: We believe access to culture leads to social and economic change. But people can only build with it, build on it and share it if it’s ready to use and easy to get hold of. We are on a mission to unlock Europe’s cultural heritage, harnessing technology to help people make new things and pass them on. One of our top priorities as an organisation is to provide the impetus, encouragement and tools for our data partners to open up their collections - to make them available to be used in new ways.

In practice: We make sure our actions are useful to others. We know what to focus on and recognise where the focus is fuzzy. We work with colleagues in other teams because we all need each other. We celebrate successes and put them in context.

Everything we do is for ‘Mutual’ benefit.

The formal bit:  We are a network, a partnership of connected organisations – from cultural institutions to commercial software developers. We can make an impact on the world because together, we’re greater than the sum of our parts. We believe in the power of creative collaboration and teamwork, working towards common goals and for mutual benefit, fostering innovation and new working practices.

In practice: We don’t just think about ourselves. We collaborate with colleagues in our own team, in other teams and with partners outside our organisation. We see communication as a two-way thing - we respond well to others as well as making our own needs known to them. We make everything we do mean something - nothing’s done just to tick a box. We’re working hard to create more of a roundtable feeling with all our partners working collaboratively - the Europeana Foundation doesn’t sit at the head of the table, shouting the loudest.

And everything we do should be ‘Reliable’.

The formal bit: We represent the cultural organisations that have safeguarded our heritage for hundreds of years, who have organised it, structured it and made it accessible with great care and precision. We are committed to ensuring that our digital data is always authentic, trustworthy and robust, that it’s easy to create with and that our network partners benefit from sharing it. One of our top priorities is to improve the quality of the data published by Europeana, that means providing the motivation, tools and support for our partners to improve the quality of the data before they share it, and finding new and improved ways for our teams to add value to it too.

In practice: Our colleagues can rely on us to do our best and communicate clearly. We follow through on our promised actions. We learn from past experiences. We respect deadlines and push ourselves to meet them without compromising the quality of what we deliver.