Topotheques are a collaborative online archive operated in local entities, mostly communities, based on Citizen Science. The focus is on securing, developing and making visible private historical material with the involvement of public institutions that act as motivators and publishers. In this way it is possible to have private cultural assets in the public administration in the long term and without monetization. They can be visible to everyone in a comprehensive synopsis and to leave them in the safekeeping of the owners. The findability of the content is simply given by the keywords, the date and point of view + angle on the map. The digital administration offers a modern search for all keyworded content and thus a quick finding of all searched content. The history of the sunglasses becomes just as possible as the stages of life of a certain deceased person, whose analogue documents are in different hands.
Starting from Lower Austria, there are now more than 450 communities and institutions in several European countries that successfully use the structure of a Topotheque and thus give citizens the opportunity to participate in a joint digital collection of local history.
The Topotheque sees itself as a pre-scientific source collection that, together with the public sector, offers the working basis for implementing and maintaining the workflow for the preservation of private cultural heritage in the form of photos, videos, stories and interviews in a community.