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A centre of expertise in data curation and preservation RMS Annual ConferenceBrighton01 May 2007 Funded by: This work is licensed under the Creative Commons.

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Presentation on theme: "A centre of expertise in data curation and preservation RMS Annual ConferenceBrighton01 May 2007 Funded by: This work is licensed under the Creative Commons."— Presentation transcript:

1 a centre of expertise in data curation and preservation RMS Annual ConferenceBrighton01 May 2007 Funded by: This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.5 UK: Scotland License. To view a copy of this license, visit sa/2.5/scotland/ ; or, (b) send a letter to Creative Commons, 543 Howard Street, 5th Floor, San Francisco, California, 94105, USA. Excludes images. Scaling the mountain A records managers guide to curation Maureen Pennock Digital Curation Centre, UKOLN, University of Bath

2 a centre of expertise in data curation and preservation RMS Annual Conference Brighton01 May 2007 The first telegram… Source: The American Memory the Library of Congress Library of Congress

3 a centre of expertise in data curation and preservation RMS Annual Conference Brighton01 May 2007 The first telephone call… Source: American Treasures the Library of Congress Library of Congress

4 a centre of expertise in data curation and preservation RMS Annual Conference Brighton01 May 2007 The first … … QWERTYIOP? … ASDFGHJK? [But it included information on using symbol] Announcing the availability of networked mail… … exact words unknown

5 a centre of expertise in data curation and preservation RMS Annual Conference Brighton01 May 2007 Contemporary use 100% of businesses use for business purposes (AIIM Survey 2003) Administrative and commercial activities Contracts and agreement negotiations Financial issues Legal issues Tendering processes Recruitment activities Both records and non-records

6 a centre of expertise in data curation and preservation RMS Annual Conference Brighton01 May 2007 Legal drivers Data Protection Act (1998) Freedom of Information Act (2000) Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act (2000) Human Rights Act (1998) Intellectual property legislation Trade Secrets/Law of Confidentiality Copyright Law Database Rights

7 a centre of expertise in data curation and preservation RMS Annual Conference Brighton01 May 2007 Risk management & business drivers Risks of failure to curate: Legal consequences Financial consequences Loss of public credibility Loss of organisational memory Loss of accountability Loss of transparency Reduced efficiency Should be addressed by risk management framework Based on information compliance & risk assessment exercises

8 a centre of expertise in data curation and preservation RMS Annual Conference Brighton01 May 2007 Contemporary challenges (I) Unclear responsibilities: as personal domain, not organisational property User reluctance to manage inbox Clash between IT and RM policies (if any) Enforcement problems Inappropriate content Undesirable content Embarrassing content

9 a centre of expertise in data curation and preservation RMS Annual Conference Brighton01 May 2007 Contemporary challenges (II) discovery carries inherent problems… Dispersed locations: IMAP; POP; Forwarded messages; mailbox; shared drive; ERMS; EDMS… Some may be inaccessible to systems admin or records managers Relevant data may (or may not) be In subject line In message content In message attachment (difficult to search) Sheer scale of challenge Not indexed for fast searching … high discovery costs

10 a centre of expertise in data curation and preservation RMS Annual Conference Brighton01 May 2007 Contemporary challenges (III) Coherence of message threads Admissibility of printed versions of s? Improper deletion/destruction procedures This is not just an issue for records Information (mis)management Risk (mis)management Can lead to all sorts of problems...

11 a centre of expertise in data curation and preservation RMS Annual Conference Brighton01 May 2007 TV Chief lets rip in snappy birthday A good day to bury bad news…

12 a centre of expertise in data curation and preservation RMS Annual Conference Brighton01 May Digital Curation & s What is digital curation? How does it apply to s? Life cycle roles & responsibilities

13 a centre of expertise in data curation and preservation RMS Annual Conference Brighton01 May 2007 What is digital curation? Digital Curation: …The activity of, managing and promoting the use of data from its point of creation, to ensure it is fit for contemporary purpose, and available for discovery and re-use. Lord & MacDonald (2003)

14 a centre of expertise in data curation and preservation RMS Annual Conference Brighton01 May 2007 Why curate s? All records must be curated to ensure they remain fit for use and re-use: including s To combat: Technological obsolescence Bad creation & management practices To help differentiate between records and non-records (and treat accordingly) To help meet legal obligations To be cost effective and efficient To secure viability and reliability of messages for future

15 a centre of expertise in data curation and preservation RMS Annual Conference Brighton01 May 2007 Curation & the life-cycle Meaningful chain of custody Requires compatibility of different stages Requires input from range of stakeholders Takes control over the records throughout lifetime Records Disposal?

16 a centre of expertise in data curation and preservation RMS Annual Conference Brighton01 May 2007 Stakeholders & Roles The range of stakeholders that affect the survival of digital material cuts across the whole lifecycle; everyone plays an important role Management & policy-makers Users - creators & receivers of messages Records Managers IT staff System & mail-server administration LAN Manager Archivists Re-users 'Curators'

17 a centre of expertise in data curation and preservation RMS Annual Conference Brighton01 May 2007 Issues for Creators & Recipients s must be: Well-formed Well-managed (even sent items!) Accessible Important elements: Good creation/response practices Inserting metadata Headers – subject line, addresses Message body - context Message formats Attachments Complying with house-style Good inbox management Compliance with organisational policy

18 a centre of expertise in data curation and preservation RMS Annual Conference Brighton01 May 2007 Issues for Curators s must be: Whole - comprising message body, headers & attachments Captured as appropriate into organisational document/records/archives management system Destroyed as appropriate Important policy and practical elements: Identification & selection of records from non-records Proper filing & integration of records Deletion of transient/unnecessary s Saving records independently of client Determining authenticity requirements Archiving & preservation Guidance and Training for users ( at all levels) Communication across the board

19 a centre of expertise in data curation and preservation RMS Annual Conference Brighton01 May 2007 Issues for Re-users s must be: Accessible for appropriate re-users Exported in an appropriate and usable format Things to consider: Legal access and re-use restrictions may be different & must be observed Appropriate re-use software may be needed Resource Discovery Access Rights Management Different re-users may have different re-use requirements s can be re-used for very different purposes to why they were originally created

20 a centre of expertise in data curation and preservation RMS Annual Conference Brighton01 May Practical Steps

21 a centre of expertise in data curation and preservation RMS Annual Conference Brighton01 May 2007 Develop an policy One or more policies to cover: Creation practices Using business accounts for private use & vice versa Responsibilities & shared access Levels of organisational monitoring Legal issues Integrated records retention & preservation Disposal

22 a centre of expertise in data curation and preservation RMS Annual Conference Brighton01 May 2007 Provide education & training On composition – Meaningful messages Formats Attachments Context On storage & transfer Both sent and received mails Relationship between inbox management and records management On legal responsibilities

23 a centre of expertise in data curation and preservation RMS Annual Conference Brighton01 May 2007 Implement a solution Consistent application of appropriate strategy May be best determined by strategic working group with representatives from different stakeholder groups Should take entire life-cycle into account Should be integrated with organisation RM – not a stand alone solution Must consider issues raised in this presentation Requires consistency across life-cycle stages Assess compliance regularly! Revisit regularly to keep up-to-date

24 a centre of expertise in data curation and preservation RMS Annual Conference Brighton01 May Management & Preservation Options

25 a centre of expertise in data curation and preservation RMS Annual Conference Brighton01 May 2007 The First Solution

26 a centre of expertise in data curation and preservation RMS Annual Conference Brighton01 May 2007 The First Solution… ? ? ? ? ? ? Doesnt solve all the problems… … and may even create extra ones!

27 a centre of expertise in data curation and preservation RMS Annual Conference Brighton01 May 2007 Coming a close second… […also known as the do-nothing approach]

28 a centre of expertise in data curation and preservation RMS Annual Conference Brighton01 May 2007 A more realistic option Convert or save in Standard formats The best thing about standards is that there are so many to choose from! Which are most appropriate for s? PDF? TIFF? RFC 2822/Plain text? XML?

29 a centre of expertise in data curation and preservation RMS Annual Conference Brighton01 May 2007 Other issues to consider What about attachments? Dealing with digital signatures Preservation metadata Long term storage and archiving Audit and certification

30 a centre of expertise in data curation and preservation RMS Annual Conference Brighton01 May 2007 The future? Changes to interface New applications Alternative search functionality Visualisation for re-use Alternative technologies Instant Messaging SKYPE RSS (Really Simple Syndication) Discussion forums Blogs, wikis, texting…

31 a centre of expertise in data curation and preservation RMS Annual Conference Brighton01 May 2007 Further reading & references (I) Policy: Institutional Records Management & s project (2003) Sample University Guidelines & Advice Edinburgh University – exemplar Developing a policy for managing (2004) Guidelines from TNA

32 a centre of expertise in data curation and preservation RMS Annual Conference Brighton01 May 2007 Further reading & references (II) Technical solutions for preservation: Digital Preservation Testbed XMaiL and preservation recommendations (2003) Antwerp City Archives preservation template & advice (2003 – 2006) National Archives of Australia: XENA (2004 +) San Diego Super Computer Centre (1999 +)

33 a centre of expertise in data curation and preservation RMS Annual Conference Brighton01 May 2007 Further reading & references (III) DCC Digital Curation Manual Instalment on Curating Messages: A life-cycle approach to the management and preservation of messages Maureen Pennock Digital Curation Centre & UKOLN 2006

34 a centre of expertise in data curation and preservation RMS Annual Conference Brighton01 May 2007 Thank you. Questions? Maureen Pennock (Join the DCC Associates Network at


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