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Exemplar repositories: positioned for preservation?

How well positioned and adaptable are our exemplar repositories for digital preservation practices? In the next couple of weeks I’ll be visiting each of them to find out. It’s important that we identify the requirements of the repository and build on what is there, rather than trying to transform them for another purpose. Preservation has to be integral but consistent with the core objectives.

To structure this intial investigation the following issues will begin to answer the opening question:

  • Current status of repository
  • Management structure and decision-making, reporting tree
  • Staffing (no. FTE)
  • Policy (documentation, e.g. mandate, format policy, retention policy, take down policy?)
  • Planning the repository (formal planning approach?)
  • Budget (contingency for preservation?)
  • Infrastructure (institutional, network, etc.)
  • Tools, services and support (which v. EPrints?)
  • Storage (current, strategy?)
  • Content profile – volume, types, formats (content control?)
  • Growth projections (scaling up?)
  • Future plans for the repository (any major changes planned?)
We’ll report the findings for each repository in a series of subsequent blogs. This is our starting point. There are no instant solutions for preservation, and over the period of the project we will take the repositories through a series of stages to develop preservation strategies that work for them. Each is likely to be different, and the results of this analysis will tell us on which stages we need to focus our efforts.

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