Because good research needs good data

Preservation and Curation in Institutional Repositories Report released

Chris Rusbridge | 01 April 2010

We are very pleased to announce that a second State of the ART report from Alex Ball (a UKOLN-based DCC staff member) has been released, this time on Preservation and Curation in Institutional Repositories. It can be found under the Resources section of the DCC website, in the Technology Watch section of Briefing Papers.

View State of the ART report

In his Introduction Alex points out that repositories have existed as long as the web, with the lineage of the arXiv repository stretching back to 1991 at Los Alamos. He goes on to point out that the question of the preservation responsibility of repositories has long been controversial, with a strong focus seen on access. However, a broad reading of the term repository makes it clear that preservation responsibilities must form part of the responsibilities of at least some of them, perhaps a wider set than that select band of "trusted digital repositories" touted in various reports.

After investigating the state of the art, Alex is reassured however. He concludes that the prospects for "preservation and curation in institutional repositories are therefore positive. It is true that the current state of practice is not ideal, and that it will be quite some time before institutional repositories complete the transition from being tools of immediate access to trustworthy, long-term guardians of important digital assets. This transition is visibly underway, though, and provided that the momentum exhibited by the curation and repository communities is not lost, one can be cautiously optimistic about its completion in due course."