Joint Workshop on Future-Proofing Institutional Websites

19 - 20 January 2006
Wellcome Library, London


Institutional websites have become an increasingly integral tool for disseminating key institutional information and for promoting institutional identities to the general public. The long-term survival, value, and usability of the information presented via institutional websites depends on numerous criteria such as the formats and codes selected for presentation, the capture and binding of associated metadata, the identification of the web resources, and the perceived quality of the web resources among current and future users.

This event focused on practical tools and techniques that can help to ensure that institutional websites are future-proofed against risks such as institutional change and technological obsolescence. In particular, we examined appraisal processes, formats for curation and preservation, international curation and preservation activity, and specific experiences through a series of case studies.

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Workshop Presentations and Documents

Workshop Mind Map

Chris Rusbridge, Director of the DCC, produced a mind map to identify the main issues that were raised during the workshop presentations and discussions. We encourage you to submit any comments or additions to this mind map through our DCC Forum: a Future-Proofing Institutional Websites thread has been created specially.

Chris Rusbridge's Mind Map of the workshop issues [PDF, 19KB]

Session One: Practical Approaches to future-proofing web sites

Future-Proofing in a Nutshell [PPT, 248KB] John Kunze, California Digital Library (CDL)

Formulating a Collection Development Policy for websites as collection items [PPT, 1.8MB] Richard Price, British Library

Standards for creating future-proof websites [PPT, 92KB] Rachel Andrew, The Web Standards Project,

Persistently identifying website content [PDF, 494KB] Andy Powell, Eduserv Foundation Note: The third bullet point on slide 16 implies that ARKs will typically be implemented using HTTP redirects. This is not necessarily the case. Although, as the example on slide 14 shows, ARKs could be implemented using techniques based on HTTP redirects, it is more likely that they will be implemented using server-side URL re-writing rules and that no external HTTP redirect will take place. Therefore, the problems of assigning multiple URIs to a single resource may not arise with ARKs until such time in the future as the original Name Mapping Authority Hostport is replaced by a new service provider.

Metadata for web archiving [PDF, 1.5MB] Julien Masanes, IIPC

Session Two: Tools and Current Archiving Activity

Selecting and Appraising website content for long-term preservation [PPT, 717KB] Hans Goutier, Dutch Ministry of Transport, Public Works and Water Management

International Internet Preservation Consortium (IIPC) tools [PDF, 1.4MB] Julien Masanes, IIPC

Preserving Project Web Sites: The Lessons Learnt [PPT, 365KB] Brian Kelly, UK Web Focus, UKOLN

PANDAS software for archiving institutional website content [PPT, 894KB] Matthew Walker, National Library of Australia

Preservation Strategies for institutional website content [PPT, 77KB] Robert Spangler, NARA

UK Web Archiving Project [PPT, 939KB] Dave Thompson, Wellcome Library

Session Three: International Activity and Legislation

The UK Government Web Archive [PPT, 3.5MB] Adrian Brown, Head of Digital Preservation, TNA

PANDORA [PPT, 212KB] Matthew Walker, National Library of Australia

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Benefits of Attendance

The workshop benefited everyone in the process of implementing or managing an institutional website.


The workshop was delivered over three sessions: international activity, practical tools and techniques, and selected use cases. Each session was chaired by a leading expert on the topic, who began each session by placing the topic into the context of digital curation and provided references to international efforts in the area. Following this introduction, each session highlight specific tools and techniques, practical experiences and/or emerging standards in the form of presentations. Each session concluded with an open question moderated by the session chair.

Key themes included:

  • Overview of international curation and preservation activities
  • Tools and techniques to create and persistently identify website content for curation and preservation
  • Examples of real-life experiences in web archiving

Programme Committee

  • Joy Davidson, Digital Curation Centre (DCC)
  • John Kunze, California Digital Library (CDL)
  • Dave Thompson, Wellcome Trust


This event was held in the Wellcome Trust Gibbs Building, 215 Euston Road. Find out more about the Wellcome Library [external] and the Wellcome Trust [external]. Find out how to get to the Wellcome Trust Gibbs Building [external].


See a list of hotels that are close to the venue [PDF, 67KB].


Registration fees were £75 for DCC Associates Network members and £125 for non-members. These fees included all workshop materials and handouts, lunch on both days and refreshments.

Membership of the DCC Associates Network is FREE! For more information on becoming a member, see our Associates Network page.

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