Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Digital Preservation Reading List

One of the challenges of learning about digital preservation can be finding good information on the subject. When I was just starting to learn about the field, one of my research strategies was to find syllabi for graduate courses in digital curation and copy the course reading lists. I found a lot of great resources that way (and many thanks to the professors who made their syllabi publicly available online). In order to help make it easier for others to find good sources of information, here are some of my top resources on the topic of digital preservation:

Digital Preservation Management: Implementing Short-term Strategies for Long-term Problems
This tutorial created by the ICPSR is a fantastic, incredibly detailed breakdown of the issues involved in digital preservation. It covers major concerns, foundational documents, and explains how institutions can plan and build a sustainable long-term digital preservation program.

Digital Preservation Handbook
Published by the Digital Preservation Coalition, this handbook gives a broad overview of issues and strategies surrounding digital preservation. It has sections specifically intended for non-specialist target audiences (such as institutional administrators) with content that could easily be pulled and used to advocate for digital preservation initiatives.

DCC Curation Lifecycle Model
This model (in graphic, colorful format!) demonstrates how digital materials can and should be managed over the course of their lifecycles, from creation onward. It can help explain why digital preservation is always an ongoing management process, not just a one-time event. It also highlights the various levels of involvement, from identifying and describing the bits to community-based review and assessment of concerns and solutions.

The Digital Curation and Preservation Bibliography (2010)
This massive resource, available in an open-access PDF version, provides a comprehensive list of publications on digital preservation issues. The contents are arranged by categories such as formats, metadata, and policy. If you’re looking for a reading list that will keep you busy from now until the end of time, this is your one-stop shop for all things digital preservation.

While those resources are great comprehensive overviews, it's also nice to gather information about digital preservation in smaller, bite-sized pieces. To that end, here are some of my favorite recent blog posts relating to digital preservation:

Written by Helen Bailey.

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