Enclosed are two recent announcements from Neil Beagrie at JISC, pertaining to digital preservation.  These have been widely posted so please excuse the duplication, but they are important and I wanted to be sure we had all seen them.


Neil is part of the DLF Digital Formats Registry team, and we are coordinating closely with a range of non-US partners in this area.


1) Survey and assessment of sources of information on file formats and software documentation: Final Report


2) JISC Circular 6/03: Digital Curation Centre




1) Survey and assessment of sources of information on file formats and software documentation: Final Report


The above report commissioned by JISC has been released on the JISC website and can be downloaded in PDF format from: http://www.jisc.ac.uk/uploaded_documents/FileFormatsreport.pdf


Background to the Report


The aim of the File Format and Rendering Project is to support the implementation of the JISC Continuing Access and Digital Preservation Strategy 2002-5: in particular to contribute to the technical foundation for a long-term digital curation centre. The project is developing technologies, conceived by the Cedars and CAMiLEON projects.


In order to provide effective preservation of digital materials it is necessary to understand the formats in which the data is encoded. The specifications of these formats are not always made publicly available and information on obsolete formats is rarely retained. A survey and assessment of sources of information on file formats and software documentation has been undertaken. This includes research into what information is available, who owns the information and how accurate it is. Sources investigated include information available on the web and in published form.


Consideration is given to outcomes from related work on file format information for example in the Public Record Office PRONOM project and the Dutch Government Digital Preservation Testbed (Digital Bewaring). A specific investigation was made into the availability of text and word processor file format information.




JISC Circular 6/03: Digital Curation Centre

The above circular was dispatched today to Heads of UK Higher Education Institutions.


The JISC and e-science core programme are inviting bids from UK Higher Education Institutions to establish a Digital Curation Centre to develop key services and generic tools needed by researchers, institutions and archiving bodies to facilitate their management of digital resources over the long-term.  Funds of up to £750,000 per annum for three years initially, are available for the establishment of the Centre.


The key objectives of the Centre are to:


Pilot development of services for recording and monitoring file formats and preservation planning tools utilising these services;


Develop a reliable, sustained repository of generic tools, software, and documentation, to support curation, preservation and the use of research materials;


Develop testbeds and certification for systems, tools, and curation services;


Provide advisory services.


Submissions of interest in establishing the Centre should be submitted by 9.00 am on Monday 7 July 2003.  The deadline for the submission of full proposals is 9.00 am on Monday 8 September 2003.  A town meeting will be held on Wednesday 18 June in central London where further details about the circular will be available together with the opportunity to ask any questions regarding the bidding process.  Please contact Ann Lloyd to reserve a place (0117 931 7124, [log in to unmask]). The full text of the Digital Curation Centre circular can be found at http://www.jisc.ac.uk/index.cfm?name=circular_06_03



Neil Beagrie                        JISC Digital Preservation Focus

Programme Director            Secretary, Digital Preservation Coalition

JISC London Office,           Tel/Fax/Voicemail :+44 (0)709 2048179

King's College London        email:  [log in to unmask]

Strand Bridge House           url:  www.jisc.ac.uk/index.cfm?=pres_home

138 - 142, The Strand,               www.dpconline.org

London WC2R 1HH          email list:  www.jiscmail.ac.uk/lists/digital-preservation.html