Transcribathon Brussels 2018, from the citzien science initative Europeana Transcribe on, 2023 recipient of a European Union Prize for Citizen Science Honorary Mention. Credit: Facts & Files (DE). CC BY-SA 4.0

Credit: Facts & Files (DE). CC BY-SA 4.0

Europeana Transcribe on

Frank Drauschke (DE), Facts & Files (DE), Europeana Foundation (NL), Austrian Institute of Technology (AT), Consortia of the EnrichEuropeana projects (INT)

Honorary Mention

The Project Europeana Transcribe on platform is an online citizen science initiative for the transcription and enrichment of digitised historical materials from cultural heritage institutions from across Europe, which are available on Engagement with the platform is supported by events known as Transcribathons, where citizen scientists can participate, compete with each other, and get rewarded for their achievements. These Runs take place online or during physical events. The aim is to make hand-written historical documents computer readable and accessible for everyone. All contributions are open access, and the results can be reused immediately.

Europeana Transcribe on was initiated by the Europeana Foundation and Facts & Files Berlin. During two EU-projects with eleven partner institutions (2018-2020, 2021-2023) the platform was further developed and expanded with new features and AI functionalities. It is enabling, among other new features, the use of Artificial Intelligence, such as Handwritten Text Recognition technology developed by READ COOP. The project now also involves applying natural language processing and big data analysis technology to analyse transcriptions and their translations, providing support for semantic metadata enrichment, clustering and classification.

Jury Statement

Europeana gives access to millions of cultural heritage items from institutions across Europe such as libraries, archives, museums or galleries. All of them share their media such as images, music or texts with a network of aggregating citizen scientists who enrich it with additional information. This hard work is designed as a creative, fresh as well as thought-provoking process, that in an unorthodox way empowers us to critically engage with our cultural heritage.

European Union Prize for Citizen Science Jury 2023 (Kat Austen, Lewis Hou, Pedro Russo, Andrea Sforzi, Stefanie Wuschitz). View full Statement here.


Project leads: Facts & Files: Frank Drauschke (DE); Europeana Foundation: Ad Pollé (NL); AIT: Sergiu Gordea (AT); PSNC: Tomasz Parkoła (PL).

The platform was advanced and further developed with project partners of the EU-funded projects:

EnrichEuropeana 2018-2020: Austrian Institute of Technology (AT); Europeana Foundation (NL); Facts & Files (DE); Poznan Supercomputing & Networking Center (PL); NET7 S.r.l. (IT); Biblioteca Judeteana “Octavian Goga” Cluj (RO); Österreichische Nationalbibliothek (AT).

EnrichEuropeana+ 2021-2023: Austrian Institute of Technology (AT); Europeana Foundation (NL); Facts & Files (DE); Poznan Supercomputing & Networking Center (PL); READ-COOP (AT); Digital Repository of Ireland (IRL); Dublin City Library and Archive (IRL); University Library Wroclaw (PL); State Archives Zagreb (HR)

Both projects were co-financed by the Connecting Europe Facility of the European Union.


Europeana Transcribe on

Europeana Transcribe on (INT) started with the first prototype of the Transcribathon tool that was created in 2014 by Facts & Files and Olaf Baldini and funded by the German Federal Government Commissioner for Culture and the Media (BKM). This tool was further developed in 2016 into the Transcribathon Europeana 1914-1918 website, which focused on the transcription of crowdsourced materials form the time of the First World War, gathered in over 200 collections days by the Europeana 1914-1918 project from all parts of Europe. During two EU-projects with eleven partner institutions (EnrichEuropeana 2018-2020, (EnrichEuropeana+ 2021-2023) the platform was redeveloped to open up to all materials available on Europeana and continuously added with new functionalities and features.