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Infrastructure Development: Multiple Digital Content Types in a Single Collection

Sokolova, Dina V.; Gorjevsky, Jane

In 2011, CUL received a grant to permanently preserve and provide access to the archives of the Ford Foundation International Fellowships Program (IFP). The program offered fellowships for post-graduate study to social justice leaders from underserved communities in Asia, Africa, Latin America, Russia, and the Middle East who lacked access to higher education. One of the key objectives of the grant was to build a set of repository-based preservation, management, and access systems and services, which can later be utilized for other digital and hybrid collections. The project covers all areas of concern addressed in the 2014 National Digital Stewardship Agenda pertaining to Digital Content Areas. The electronic component of the IFP archive contains both born-digital and digitized records and includes office documents, research data, websites, moving images, and recorded sound. It comprises 3.6 TB of materials received from 22 countries in 245 file formats and 10 languages, including 7 non-Roman character sets. The IFP project is also particularly illustrative of the challenges mentioned in the Technical Infrastructure Development area of the National Agenda, such as working with multiple file formats and character sets, using digital forensic tools for content appraisal, ensuring content integrity at the earliest possible stage, even prior to the content transfer, and addressing privacy and confidentiality concerns. The presentation focuses on the project workflow and decision-making as well as technological tools, utilized in the process, within the framework of current digital preservation standards and best practices.

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