State of Digital Preservation in 2018

The State of Digital Preservation in 2018, a recent report by Oya Y. Rieger, investigates today’s digital landscape through interviews with 21 experts and thought leaders in the field.  The stated goal of the interviews was to identify opportunities and needs in the field of digital preservation and not to celebrate successes. As such, the report focuses on gaps and challenges in this arena.  That is not to say there is no mention of what is working well in digital preservation, because that is not the case.  This first couple pages of the report does layout the successes in this area.  A majority of the report, however, identifies those areas in need of development or where challenges exist.  Some challenges identified in the report include determining the role of research libraries in the sphere, confusion about new preservation services, and concerns about the usability of archived research data.  The later part of Ms. Riegar’s report discusses three potential research areas.  This includes (1) the creation of a cohesive roadmap to guide the international community to investigate challenges in the realm in a holistically way; (2) investigation of the notions of ownership and control of digital information; and (3) outlining a case or many cases, that supports the need for digital preservation programs.

Through this report, Ms. Reiger hopes to engage others in this conversation with the goal of expanding the report’s preliminary findings and developing a potential research and policy agenda.

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