Themes & Topics

We invite original contributions that describe practice- and theory-informed approaches to scientific models, daily practice, collaborative efforts, creative solutions, and the progress your organization has made in digital preservation. Submissions should relate to the overall conference theme, Eye on the Horizon, describing the cutting edge of our domain and crossing into other domains.

We encourage submissions which describe collaborations across and beyond cultural heritage domains, and we welcome proposals that describe research and practice in agencies of all sizes and in all sectors.

The iPRES 2019 Programme Committee believes that the following themes and topics reflect the current state of thinking and development in digital preservation and encourages submissions in these fields of interest:

1. Collaboration: a Necessity, an Opportunity or a Luxury?

  • How do we pinpoint areas where collaboration has the greatest impact?
  • What are the ingredients for successful collaboration? Why do some collaborations fail?
  • How do we cultivate relationships with our end users that produce better outcomes for both preservation and long-term access?
  • How can we collectively demonstrate the societal value of preserving digital assets?
  • How can we articulate the relationship between vendors, end users and repositories in a way that highlights their interdependencies and results in more effective collaborations?
  • How have the digital technologies changed the nature of collaboration between and beyond memory institutions and cultural heritage agencies?
  • How might approaches in Research Data Management support approaches in the Cultural Heritage Domain and vice versa?

2. Designing and Delivering Sustainable Digital Preservation

  • What is considered baseline digital preservation and how do programmes mature, grow and scale over time?
  • What business and economic models facilitate or frustrate digital preservation?
  • Which frameworks for delivery and design of digital preservation have been successful across institutional and national boundaries? How can success be documented or measured? How can we learn from mistakes?
  • How have issues of scale been addressed within and across institutional boundaries?
  • How do we design digital preservation systems that embody our stewardship values? Which values do we want our digital preservation systems to reflect: inclusiveness, accessibility, usability, openness?
  • How do we sustain open source technologies and open standards for digital preservation?

3. Exploring New Horizons

  • What impact does digital preservation have on our broader institutional missions, communities, and nations?
  • What can the digital preservation community learn from long-lived digital services and infrastructures in commerce, industry and in the not-for-profit sector?
  • What is the effect of major policy developments (e.g. the FAIR data principles, Open Access requirements policies, Open Data policies ) on digital preservation programmes?
  • How can we successfully preserve private and confidential material for the long term, or how do we strike a balance between data sharing and privacy?
  • What communities are not represented in digital archives, or unable to participate in the safeguarding of their own legacy?
  • To what extent have assumptions of privilege and exclusion been embedded in digital preservation practice, and what can be done to address them?
  • How does the digital preservation community proactively address emerging user trends in content production (e.g. virtual reality), classification & description (e.g. machine learning), security (e.g. blockchain) and storage (e.g. distributed file systems)?
  • How do we know it is time for specific digital preservation standards, approaches, tools, programmes, and projects to vanish over the horizon? How do we foster community self-reflection and channel healthy critique towards the development of new or improved digital preservation standards and approaches?

4. Building Capacity, Capability and Community

  • What commonalities are there between analogue and digital preservation?
  • Do emerging digital preservation curricula prepare future digital preservationists sufficiently? How should educators (in both professional development and academic programmes) respond to this?
  • How can we ensure that our growing body of digital preservation literature and practice-based documentation is easily accessible to current and future practitioners?
  • What steps are needed to build capacity and skills for organizations of all sizes?
  • How can we successfully engage and involve decision-makers and executives in digital preservation?
  • How can we raise awareness and build digital preservation capacity for content developers, creators, researchers, students and private individuals? How can we get them involved in digital preservation approaches and programmes?
  • How do we ensure equity in the planning, design, and delivery of preservation services?

5. The Cutting Edge: Technical Infrastructure and Implementation

  • What are the latest developments in digital preservation tools and storage solutions?
  • What is emerging practice in software preservation and in emulation/virtualization?
  • How do we adapt existing digital preservation tools and strategies to address the latest developments in social media and Web-based content?
  • What are the latest developments in file format management, identification and migration?
  • How to ensure authenticity and secure custody of digital records?
  • How can we evaluate the impact of our digital preservation system and storage choices on the physical environment? How do we balance cost, security, and energy use?
  • How to reconcile ongoing maintenance with responsiveness to emerging trends in technology?
  • How can the digital preservation community better track technological developments and anticipate technical gaps?
  • What are digital preservation failures that have led to new insights and approaches?