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Government innovation ranked with the world’s best

Government innovation ranked with the world’s best:

The website containing the online Dictionary of New Zealand Biography has achieved a significant accolade by being judged a finalist for the prestigious European Multimedia Award (EMMA).

Wellington web development company, Click Suite, are thrilled at receiving their second nomination for what is known as the “Oscar” of the multimedia industry.

The site is ranked in the top three internationally for Public Institutions. “It’s a real tribute to the Ministry for Culture and Heritage which supported the site being so much more than a list of essays: its vision and desire to support the innovation behind the site has been rewarded. The Government’s support for innovation in our industry has helped us to stand up with the best in the world.” says Click Suite Director, Emily Loughnan.

“This is fantastic news’, says Associate Minister for Culture and Heritage, Judith Tizard. “The Dictionary of New Zealand Biography online is an excellent combination of information technology, heritage preservation, and giving New Zealanders access to their history and heritage. This is another example of New Zealanders being at the forefront of innovation.”

The EMMAs
The International EMMAs (Electronic Multimedia Awards) recognise excellence in digital media content creation through the acknowledgement of best practice and ongoing educational programmes.

Celebrating their 11th anniversary this year, this European based international awards programme attracts entries from over 40 countries and has the widest reach of any digital awards event worldwide.

The EMMAs are respected for their independence and impartiality and are widely recognised as the most prestigious interactive media awards. The EMMAs are organised in conjunction with an international steering committee comprising experts from all sectors of the industry and the sole objective of the competition is to reward excellence. In line with this policy, a single award is presented in each category, but only where the high standards that have become synonymous with the EMMA name have been achieved.

The finalists in the Public Institutions /Services Information Category are:

http://www.dnzb.govt.nz - Click Suite
http://www.tate.org.uk - Tate
http://www.tolerance.org - Southern Poverty Law Centre Winners will be announced at the end of November.
·
The Site: http://www.dnzb.govt.nz

The website was officially launched by the Prime Minister in December 2001. Since then it has attracted a steadily growing audience, with over 17,000 individuals accessing the site in a one month period.

Since launching, the website has been continually enhanced – the latest addition being sound files allowing users to hear the voices of Aunt Daisy, Norman Kirk, Evelyn Page, Rudall Hayward, Dame Whina Cooper (and many more) along with their biography and images. What started as digitisation of the printed word, is now taking shape as a truly multiple media experience.

The website is a database driven site which serves up information to users through a simple interface.

The site:

Is New Zealand’s premiere online biographical resource. Contains 3049 biographies of New Zealanders who have ‘made their mark’ on the country. (It does not include people who are alive.) Makes all the biographies fully searchable – by names, words and phrases, occupations, gender, iwi, places of birth, New Zealand regions, and more – at a single website. Is Accessible to an international audience with free access to all Internet users. Contains over half a million words in Maori language – the biographies of 493 Maori people. This is undoubtedly the largest amount of te reo available on any website. Illustrated with over 1,800 pictures, mostly portraits of the people you read are reading about. Expands our knowledge and excites New Zealanders’ interest in the people who made the past of the country. Helps construct a New Zealand national identity through the lives of people who made the country what it is today. Forms a virtual history of New Zealand thought the eventful lives of its people. Created by partnerships between New Zealand institutions and individuals – over 1200 writers and historians, many libraries, galleries and museums have all participated and contributed to the website. Is a dynamic living project which will continue to be refreshed and added to over the years. Is a growing national (and international) treasure for information about New Zealand and New Zealanders.

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