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DigiCULT
R
E L AT E D
P
R O J E C T S A N D
A (
S M A L L
) S
E L E C T I O N
InterPARES - International Research on Perma-
nent Authentic Records in Electronic Systems
InterPARES 1:
The first phase of the project began in 1999 and
was concluded in 2001. It built on an earlier project
at the Vancouver, Canada, University of British
Columbia (UBC), `The Preservation of the Integrity
of Electronic Records' (1996), which addressed issues
surrounding the creation and maintenance of authen-
tic and reliable electronic records in their active, pre-
archival state. See: http://www.interpares.org/
UBCProject/index.htm
InterPARES 1 focused on the preservation of the
authenticity of records that are no longer needed by
the creating body to fulfill its own mission or purpo-
ses. Results from InterPARES 1 included guidance
on conceptual requirements for authenticity, models
of the processes of selection and preservation of authen-
tic electronic records, a glossary, and several other
documents are available on the project website.
The final text of the InterPARES 1 findings will
be electronically published on its website by Septem-
ber 2002 and published in book form by the Italian
Ministry for Cultural Properties and Activities in the
winter 2002-2003.
InterPARES 2:
The key aspects distinguishing the second phase of
the InterPARES project from the first are described
on the project website as `dramatically innovative'.
InterPARES 2 will not only address issues of authen-
ticity but also reliability and accuracy. It will study
them throughout the records' life-cycle from creation
to permanent preservation, unlike phase 1 that was
concerned only with non-current records destined
for permanent preservation. Importantly, InterPARES 2
will focus on records produced in new digital environ-
ments, experiential, dynamic, and interactive whereas
phase 1 was concerned only with records generated
in databases and document management systems.The
focus of InterPARES 2 will not be just on records
resulting from administrative and legal activities, but
those resulting from artistic, scientific and govern-
ment activities.
The InterPARES studies began in January 2002
and will continue until December 2006.
http://www.interpares.org/
Reference Model for an Open Archival
Information System (OAIS)
The Reference Model for an Open Archival
Information System provides a common framework
for describing and comparing architectures and ope-
rations of digital archives. It was developed by the
U.S. Consultative Committee on Space Data, and has
been adopted as ISO 14721:2002.
A useful short presentation and review of the refe-
rence model is provided in the Research Libraries
Group and Online Computer Library Center
(RLG/OCLC) report `Trusted Digital Repositories'
(2002) highlighting the necessary functions of a
long-term digital repository.The RLG proposes
compliance with this model as the defining attribute
of a trusted digital repository.
The OAIS reference model was used, for example,
by the Leeds University, England, Consortium of
University Libraries'(CURL) Exemplars in Digital
Archives (Cedars) project (http://www.leeds.ac.uk/
cedars/), whose participants discovered `the benefit of
adopting a shared vocabulary and set of concepts to
allow implementation across a number of different
local situations'. In fact, Cedars has provided one
important demonstrator project based on this model.
(cf. Russell, 2000; see: Literature)
Another major project using the OAIS reference
model is the new digital library system of the British
Library that is designed to provide long-term access
to digital collections.
Sources:
NASA: ISO Archiving Standards: Overview (this site
contains links and background information to the refe-
rence model and other archival standardization efforts)
http://ssdoo.gsfc.nasa.gov/nost/isoas/overview.html
Blue Book of the Reference Model: CCSDS
650.0-B-1: Reference Model for an Open Archival
Information System (OAIS). Blue Book. Issue 1.
January 2002.
http://ssdoo.gsfc.nasa.gov/nost/isoas/ref_model.html
Research Libraries Group: Open Archival
Information System (OAIS) Resources,
http://www.rlg.org/longterm/oais.html
Helen Shenton: From Talking to Doing: Digital Pre-
servation at the British Library. In: Preservation 2000,
http://www.rlg.org/events/pres-2000/shenton.html