For this week’s blogpost and as Ukraine is still being invaded, WE-Hope partners would like to share a very significant initiative: SUCHO Saving Ukrainian Cultural Heritage Online (SUCHO).
As in any conflict, culture and cultural heritage are a target. In Ukraine, the picture is distressing.
Since the conflict erupted in February 2022, several cultural institutions have been destroyed by the Russian troops (for instance the Donestk Regional Theatre of Mariupol). According to a UNESCO verification in May, 127 landmarks including 15 monuments, 11 museums and 54 religious buildings have been damaged or destroyed.
With the objective to protect and archive at-risk sites, several professionals gathered to create the “SUCHO” initiative. The initiative is coordinated by Stanford University, Tufts University and the Austrian Centre for Digital Humanities and Cultural Heritage. It is composed of more than 1300 professionals from the cultural heritage, researchers and programmers. As the country is currently under attack, its goal is to identify, classify and archive at-risk sites, content and data in Ukrainian cultural heritage organisations. SUCHO uses a combination of technologies to crawl and archive sites and content, including the Internet Archive’s Wayback Machine, and the Browsertrix crawler.
So far SUCHO has saved more than 40TB of scanned documents, artworks and many other digital materials from 4,500+ websites of Ukrainian museums, libraries and archives.