Networking with Networks: What is the Landscape for Digital Preservation Communities like? Slideshow uri icon


  • Since the early 2000s digital preservation networks appeared all over the world. These are networks bringing together libraries, archives, museums and even private enterprises that have to cope with the challenge of preserving their digital content. It is nearly impossible to run a digital archive without contacts to colleagues and institutions because digital preservation it so complex and demanding concerning the technical surrounding that is needed. So networking keeps digital archives at the state of the art by fostering the national and international transfer of knowledge on this topic. However, not all digital preservation networks have been able to sustain themselves. While grant funded networks, such as DigitalPreservationEurope seized to exist post-project phase, first large membership funded networks, such as the US-based DPN (Digital Preservation Network) are now announcing their wind-down. The landscape of digital preservation networks can be described based on location – with regional, national or international networks – as well as based on the digital preservation topics a network covers. While some networks, such as nestor, the German Competence Network for Digital Preservation or the Digital Preservation Coalition dpc cover a wide range of subjects, others, like the Open Preservation Foundation (OPF) target a specific challenge within digital preservation. A third network category is that of distinct service-providing networks, such as the aforementioned DPN, which functioned as a broker between members’ storage nodes. Despite so many active digital preservation networks, a landscape overview is currently missing. The paper presents a nestor project which aims to close this gap via an in-depth analysis of these networks. Such a study within nestor as one of the key players in the wider landscape itself, serves a threefold purpose: (1) for nestor it is a means of self-reflection, evaluating where the networks sits within the larger international context (2) it presents a starting point for a closer national and international cooperation with these networks with the potential to support a bottom-up development of closer cooperation of networks by collecting information on these networks (3) it fulfills members’ and the wider communities information needs regarding different network acitivities The project forsees an initial desktop analysis as well as a survey of the different networks. While nestor will conduct the survey in the summer of 2019, the concept and results of a first stage analysis of these networks will be presented at the LIBER conference with the aim of making this idea public and asking for support for the survey that will follow. Thomas Bähr works in TIB Hannover. He is head of the preservation section in this special library Michelle Lindlar is working in the TIB Hannover and is responsible for digital preservation. Stefan Strathmann coordinates the digital preservation activities of the SUB Göttingen. He is active in training for digital preservation within the nestor school. Sabine Schrimpf is the head of the nestor office at DNB


  • Bähr, Thomas
  • Lindlar, Michelle
  • Schrimpf, Sabine
  • Strathmann, Stefan
  • Zarnitz, Monika

publication date

  • June 28, 2019

number of pages

  • 11