Academic libraries and archives have always played an important role in the long-term preservation of society’s documentary heritage. And while maintaining large collections of print resources over time is not without its difficulties, the challenges of managing digital materials for the long-term are enormous, including proprietary software and data formats, software and hardware obsolescence, storage media longevity, and threats arising from complexity and volume, to name a few. And while most academic institutions have digital records and other information that they must retain for more than 10 years, most organizations are not storing their long-term digital assets in a manner sufficient to ensure their long-term protection and accessibility.
This presentation will define digital preservation as a complex set of systems and organizational activities required to ensure the long-term viability of digital materials over time, and provide an update on a variety of shared services being developed and deployed by research libraries in Canada in support of digital stewardship and preservation activities. It will also address the critical need for library and IT staff to work together to tackle the substantial challenges associated with preserving digital information over the long term.
Digital Preservation Network Manager, University of Victoria