At CNI’s Fall Meeting in December, we had the pleasure of presenting some of the highlights from the recent Ithaka S+R brief on the state of digital preservation. It was one of the talks selected for recording and is now available on CNI’s YouTube and Vimeo channels.

At CNI, we shared some of what we have learned to gather feedback and additional perspectives as we continue to explore the current landscape of digital preservation programs and services. The discussion was lively and identified several important  issues, including:

  • The complexities involved in archiving enhanced electronic publications, such as multimedia ebooks, as relevant preservation services and expertise are fragmented
  • The importance of investing in digital preservation technical and organizational competencies and knowledge-base and supporting the development of new training programs and opportunities for practicing and learning on the ground
  • The durability of some preservation services and organizations and the need to engage in systematic and transparent organizational assessment processes to monitor and ensure long-term stability and build confidence in their longevity
  • The need to engage in more diverse collaborations that bring together different expertise and organizational missions, representing both commercial and non-profit entities
  • Challenges in scaling the current preservation programs, services, and resources in libraries and archives
  • Understanding and assessing the role of cloud computing in digital preservation, especially as it is increasingly closely coupled with digital asset management systems

The digital preservation community has deep expertise and participates in a robust exchange of best practices, standards, preservation techniques, tools, and systems. Nevertheless, given the complexity of designing preservation strategies at scale, it is inevitable that there is lingering anxiety. We hope that the issues raised in the brief and the CNI presentation will be stimulating We look forward to hearing your comments as Ithaka S+R seeks to develop a research agenda of benefit to our wider community.