This writing utilizes the case study of a specific project, namely adopting a Digital Asset Management System (DAMS) based on open source technologies at the Art Institute of Chicago (AIC), to describe the thought process, which along the way led to the discovery of Linked Data and more general technology development practices based on community participation. In order to better replicate such a thought process and its evolution into a broader strategy that goes beyond technology, this paper will begin by describing the problem that the Collection IT team at AIC had been initially tasked to resolve, and its technical implementation. After that, the paper will treat the strategic shift of resources from a self-contained production and review cycle toward an exchange-based economy. The challenges, both external and internal, posed by this change will be addressed. All the while, the paper will highlight perspectives and challenges related to the museum sector, and the efforts of AIC to adopt views and methodologies that have traditionally been associated with the library world. A section is dedicated to ongoing efforts of the same nature among museums.
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