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Society of American Archivists Awards ANADP conference paper with the 2013 Preservation Publication Award

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The following is a guest post from Michael Mastrangelo, a Program Support Assistant in the Office of Strategic Initiatives at the Library of Congress.

During the Society of American Archivists Annual Conference in New Orleans in August, the NDIIPP-supported initiative Aligning National Approaches to Digital Preservation (ANADP), received the prestigious  Preservation Publication Award for 2013. ANADP is a 327-page collection of peer-reviewed essays that establishes 47 goals and strategies to merge the efforts of national digital preservation efforts of nations throughout the European Union and the United States.

The Preservation Publication Award goes to outstanding preservation works, nominated by peers and reviewed by an SAA committee. SAA awarded this paper because it, “…broadens and deepens its impact by reflecting on the ANADP presentations,” and “…highlights the need for strategic international collaborations.” ANADP is written for information professionals from librarians to administrators, so it will have a broad impact on the whole information field, sparking cross-industry collaboration in addition to cross-border collaboration.

The honor goes to ANADP’s volume editor Nancy McGovern, the Head of Curation and Preservation Services at the MIT Libraries, series editor Katherine Skinner, the Executive Director of the Educopia Institute, and the section co-authors including representatives of the publications main sponsor, The Library of Congress, as well as experts from the Joint Information Systems Committee, Open Planets Foundation and other national and international organizations.

The ANADP conference was conceived from brainstorming sessions between the Educopia Institute, the Library of Congress, the University of North Texas, Auburn University, the MetaArchive Cooperative and the National Library of Estonia. In 2011, 125 delegates from 20 countries met in Tallinn, Estonia where they shared their national digital preservation practices. Delegates divided the work to create an overarching plan for furthering international collaboration by authoring a number of separate “alignments” across organizations, legal regimes, technical issues, economic approaches, standards and education.

The technical alignment panel discussed infrastructure like LOCKSS (Lots of Copies Keep Stuff Safe), while the organizational panel covered cost-efficiencies and vendor relations. The standards panel noted that many standards are just impractical or overly detailed making them inaccessible to smaller institutions. The copyright/legal panel mentioned the complicated laws on orphan works across jurisdictions, noting that conflicting copyright laws complicate preservation even across Europe’s fluid borders.

On the final day, the education panel stressed internships for bridging theory and practice, and George Coulbourne of the Digital Preservation Outreach and Education initiative suggested corporate partnerships to fund hands-on post-graduate development. Finally, the economics panel tackled the difficult question of shrinking budgets and identified successful funding models in projects like congressionally-funded NDIIPP, and JISC, a public charity with non-profit arms.

ANADP II is planned for November 18-20, 2013 in Barcelona. International digital stewardship leaders will reconvene to track progress toward collaboration and develop specific preservation actions for each collaborator to implement.

“I hope that we’ll delegate specific tasks to all the representatives to get the ball rolling on the action items in ANADP I,” said Mary Molinaro, the Associate Dean for Library Technologies at the University of Kentucky and a member of the DPOE Steering Committee. “We created an exciting plan for international collaboration with that first publication, now we just need to execute it.”

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