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‘Preserving Digital Archives Step-by-step solutions’ Najla Semple Digital Preservation Coalition.

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Presentation on theme: "‘Preserving Digital Archives Step-by-step solutions’ Najla Semple Digital Preservation Coalition."— Presentation transcript:

1 ‘Preserving Digital Archives Step-by-step solutions’ Najla Semple Digital Preservation Coalition

2 2 Overview Digital Preservation Coalition & activities UK Needs Assessment Collaboration & examples Solutions Where to go next

3 3 Fuzzy end of the lollipop...

4 4 1. Promoting Digital Preservation  Efforts aimed at ensuring digital preservation is on the agenda of key stakeholders. This involves an advocacy and PR campaign, press articles, conference papers, the UK Needs Assessment, etc. 2. Acting to increase funding  Ensuring the nation’s investment in preservation 3. Fostering collaboration and forging strategic alliances  With relevant agencies nationally and internationally e.g. National Library of Australia, Library of Congress. Digital Preservation Coalition

5 5 4. Producing, providing, and disseminating information  Building expertise in digital preservation e.g. commissioning Technology Watch Reports and holding DPC forums. Developing the DPC website and producing quarterly reports of ‘What’s New in Digital Preservation’, monthly reports to members via Discussion lists 5. Promoting and developing services, technology, standards and training  E.g. Initiating training workshops, so far held in Edinburgh, London and Belfast, and producing Technology Watch Reports, developing intensive digital preservation training programme 6.Continuing to develop the Coalition’s activities  Recruiting membership and attracting resources to support DPC’s goals Six Work Packages

6 6 Digital Preservation Coalition: Internal Structure DPC Office DPC Board 12 Full members DPC Associates 16 Associate members DPC Work plan DPC Work plan Consultancies Website Public Relations Tech ? Surveys KJN

7 7 Members of the DPC Cross-Sectoral Membership Publishing & Media Libraries Archives Museums & Records Data services Government Research & Policy

8 8 ‘What’s New in Digital Preservation?’ A quarterly report prepared by the National Library of Australia’s PADI and the DPC (UKOLN compiles this for the DPC) PADI, set up in 1996, is a comprehensive subject gateway to international digital preservation resources The reports list a summary of international preservation activities Information compiled from the PADI gateway and mailing lists Activities – Regular events

9 9 Preservation management of Digital Material Handbook Developed by Neil Beagrie and Maggie Jones in Online version to be developed further Available free at: Used as a basis for workshops and tutorials, and may be used for more intensive training programmes Offers a practical step-by-step guide for those involved in all stages of digital preservation Activities – UK Initiatives

10 10 Technology Watch Reports: These are user-friendly reports the DPC has commissioned experts to write. Authors avoid complicated jargon-filled language so that reports are accessible to all Reports focus on emerging preservation standards, technical formats, and developments in tools which are critical in assisting digital preservation activities Reports available on the DPC website:  ‘Introduction to OAIS’ – Brian Lavoie/OCLC  ‘Institutional Repositories’ – Paul Wheatley  ‘Large-Scale Archival Storage’ – Jim Linden, Sean Martin, Richard Masters and Roderic Parker (British Library)  ‘Preservation Metadata’ Brian Lavoie OCLC Activities – Initiatives

11 11 How big is the problem? Challenge of quantifying the problem Challenge of articulating the danger –Between hysteria (Digital Dark Ages) and –Complacency (the problem is exaggerated) We need some more detail More facts and figures on which to base sustainable forward plans Information which will engage funders and decision makers

12 12 UK Needs Assessment Exercise: Activities – Initiatives UKNA Map of DPC Members Scenarios of Data Loss DPC Members Survey (2003) MLA Funded Regional Survey (2005) Surveys: Interviews Other Data Surveys: Interviews Other Data

13 13 UK Needs Assessment Building up a picture of what is (and isn’t) happening in the UK Gathering data on volumes and formats Identifying priorities Quantifying the problem Building sufficient knowledge base to be able to plan effectively

14 14 Influence over formats Limited influence over formats 6% Not aware of any influence over formats 22% Able to influence formats 25% No influence over formats 31% No data acquired from outside organisation 16%

15 15 Some Recent Developments & Trends Emphasis on learning by doing More practical projects and ongoing research to inform longer-term programmes Development of services and tools Emphasis on good practice in creating digital resources. Greater collaboration –With wider range of partners

16 16 UK Web Archiving Consortium

17 17 Digital Curation Centre

18 18 Digital Preservation Training Programme

19 19 Open-source Free software foundation Open source initiative Open source watch

20 20 Audit & Certification Collaboration on Certification for repositories – DCC E.g. certifiable emulation strategies Out-sourcing agencies – DPC information leaflet

21 21 All Organisations Preservation specialists Information Specialists Life-cycle responsibilities

22 22 Lessons learned to date We can’t rely on chance survival. Recovery of data will always be more costly than lifecycle management. It is much more cost-effective to manage data from creation. No single organisation will be able to manage the vast amounts of digital resources – need very high degree of cooperation and collaboration. There won’t be a single definitive solution.

23 23 UNESCO Guidelines 5.2.3Responsibility 6.Everyone does not have to do everything; everything does not have to be done all at once. 7.…it is usually better for non-comprehensive and non- reliable action to be taken than for no action at all. Small steps are usually better than no steps Management 33. Waiting for comprehensive, reliable solutions to appear before taking responsible action will probably mean material is lost.

24 24 Strategies Raise awareness for courses to contain digital preservation element There is knowledge in county councils Harnessing it Creating partnerships Shared tools and expertise

25 25 Cornell’s 5 Organizational Stages Acknowledge: understanding that digital preservation is a local concern Act: initiating digital preservation projects Consolidate: moving from projects to programs Institutionalize: incorporating the larger environment and rationalizing programs Externalize: embracing inter-institutional collaboration and dependency

26 26 Where do we go from here? Determine whether your institution has a need and sufficient interest to develop a digital preservation program. Determine if digital preservation could be added to or derived from your institutional mission statement or some other mandate. Seek support from senior management to make digital preservation commitment explicit and ongoing. Have senior management formally review and adopt a formal policy.

27 27 Where do you go from here? Promulgate and publicize policy. Maintain and update policy as living document. Develop 3-year preservation plan. Establish a digital preservation task force which includes key stakeholders within the institution.

28 28 Resources DPC, DCC PADI Training programme DPC Contracting out leaflet DPC List of preservation services TNA - PRONOM

29 29 Funding DTI Commercial sector ? Consortia approach Useful case-studies Network of contacts

30 30 Solutions  There are no clear-cut or definitive solutions  Progress depends on a mix of individual institutional responsibility combined with improved coordination at national, regional, and local level as well as internationally  Good practice is evolving and support mechanisms (e.g. DCC) are being developed  Good planning and documentation offer the best prospects in the interim

31 31 ‘Does it make sense to spend too much for perfection?’ - Clifford Lynch

32 32 Thank You!


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