The codex, which is more than 500 years old, contains ritual and divination calendars, astronomical and meteorological tables, ritual practices and numerous representations of deities of the Mayan culture. Visiting the exhibition is also of great interest for guests from South America. They travel several thousand kilometers to see the original, although the codex has been available free of charge in digital form and in high resolution online since 2008.
The study is part of the current research project Cultural Heritage at Risk, which discusses, among other things, the value of originals and the need to preserve material cultural assets in times of digitization. The scientists in the Innovation Acceptance Unit at Fraunhofer IMW have already been analyzing the social value of cultural heritage for several years in the Cultural Heritage Research Alliance, an initiative founded jointly by the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft, the Leibniz Association and the Prussian Cultural Heritage Foundation in 2008. Since 2014, the Dresden State Art Collections and the Dresden State and University Library have also been involved in this cooperation.
The current survey on the Dresden Maya Codex is available in five languages, in German, English, French, Spanish and Russian, and can be completed on site or online. Over the course of the year, the research team will regularly evaluate the responses together with the SLUB. In addition to the on-site survey, another representative online survey is planned in Germany on the digitization of museum visits.