Practical Digital Preservation: A How-to Guide for Organizations of Any Size

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  • Description
  • Table of Contents
  • About the author
  • Reviews

This very practical guide, offering a comprehensive overview of best practice, is aimed at the non-specialist, assuming only a basic understanding of IT and offering guidance as to how to implement strategies with minimal time and resources. Digital preservation has become a critical issue for institutions of all sizes but until recently has mostly been the preserve of national archives and libraries with the resources, time and specialist knowledge available to experiment. As the discipline matures and practical tools and information are increasingly available the barriers to entry are falling for smaller organizations which can realistically start to take active steps towards a preservation strategy. However, the sheer volume of technical information now available on the subject is becoming a significant obstacle and a straightforward guide is required to offer clear and practical solutions.  Each chapter covers the essential building blocks of digital preservation strategy and implementation, leading the reader through the process. International case studies from organizations such as the Wellcome Library, Central Connecticut State University Library in the USA and Gloucestershire Archives in the UK illustrate how real organizations have approached the challenges of digital preservation. Key topics include:

  • Making the case for digital preservation
  • Understanding your requirements  
  • Models for implementing a digital preservation service  
  • Selecting and acquiring digital objects
  • Accessioning and ingesting digital objects
  • Describing digital objects
  • Preserving digital objects  
  • Providing access to users
  • Future trends

This is an essential handbook for anyone involved in digital preservation and those wanting to get a better understanding of the process. It's also a useful guide to digital preservation basics for students studying library and information science, archives and records management courses and academics getting to grips with practical issues.

Read the Table of Contents and Chapter 1 of this book now!

Adrian Brown

Adrian Brown is Assistant Clerk of the Records at the Parliamentary Archives, UK, and has lectured and published widely on all aspects of digital preservation, including the book Archiving Websites: A Practical Guide for Information Management Professionals. He was previously Head of Digital Preservation at the National Archives, where his team won the International Digital Preservation Award in 2007.

"Each chapter is organized in a meaningful way, and the entire book flows with a natural progression through the complex stages of digital preservation. There is not a lot of technical jargon and the concepts outlined can be applied to small or large organizations that have a variety of assets. The author does an excellent job presenting complicated content in a digestible way, and offers useful case studies throughout the book."
— Library Resources & Technical Services

"Brown has combed through the often overwhelming deluge of information that comprises the current output of the digital preservation community and has extracted, synthesized, and presented the most relevant bits in a highly readable and readily comprehensive format that digital preservation practitioners and researchers will likely consult and cite frequently, well into the foreseeable future."
— Archival Issues

 "Comprehensive and accessible ... The greatest strength of Brown's work is his ability to break complex processes down in such a way as they can be easily understood and accomplished. This is further aided by his providing readers with numerous exemplars that fit institutions of a variety of sizes and missions. Likewise, his helping his readers take a close look at their own needs, experience, and context before they move forward into digital preservation establishes a strong foundation for their own preservation work."  — Journal of Library Innovation