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Digital preservation policy

1. Purpose

The purpose of this policy is to outline State Library Victoria’s approach to digital preservation.

2. Scope

Digital material includes:

  • born-digital and turned-digital objects acquired for the Library’s collections
  • turned-digital objects created from the Library’s collections
  • digital items published in Victoria and provided to the Library under legal deposit legislation
  • digital publications originally published on physical carriers acquired for the Library’s collections
  • electronic publications selected by the Library and preserved on PANDORA by the National Library of Australia
  • electronic publications (other than those selected for PANDORA)

3. Definitions

Born-digital: Born-digital refers to objects that originate in a digital form.

Digital object: Digital objects are compound artefacts that wrap digital material in terms of its content, metadata, relationships with other objects and behaviour.

Digital preservation: Digital preservation is the term given to strategies and actions to guarantee that digital objects remain useable and accessible over time.

PANDORA: Australia's web archive is a collection of online publications hosted by the National Library of Australia. It receives contributions from a number of Australian institutions, including several state and territory libraries.

Turned-digital: Turned-digital refers to objects which are a digital representation that did not originate in digital form.

Trusted digital repository: A system to provide reliable long term access to managed digital resources now and into the future, which complies with the architecture as outlined in the open archival information system (OAIS) reference model. The OAIS reference model provides the ideal of the environment, functions and data types for implementing a digital repository and is an official ISO standard (ISO 14721: 2003).

4. Roles and responsibilities

The Director Collections and Access has responsibility for advising the Library Board of Victoria on matters relating to digital preservation and storage.

5. Policy contents

In the digital environment the Library ensures that all Victorians have ready access to comprehensive collection material and information resources to enrich their cultural, educational, social and economic lives, through access to both digital and physical objects. Turned-digital objects created from the Library’s collection are created solely for access purposes. All other categories of digital material (as listed in section 2.0) form part of the collection and will be digitally preserved as part of the Library’s commitment to the preservation of the collection and making it accessible as articulated in the Libraries Act 1988 (Act no. 80/1988).

The Library has an active digitisation program resulting in an expanding digital collection and adheres to legal requirements specified in the Commonwealth Copyright Act 1968 (as amended) with specific reference to sections 51A, 51B, 110A, 110B, 112, 112AA and 200AB. All copying and reformatting activities undertaken by the Library will be in accordance with the Act or with the copyright owner's agreement.

The Library’s digital object management system (DOMS) was implemented to store and provide effective access to and delivery from collections digitally, and to enable the Library to safeguard digital collections providing infrastructure for preservation of digital information. The DOMS represents the Library’s strategy to ensure preparation for readiness to invest in a long term preservation solution for digital materials – a trusted digital repository. To extend the life of digital content, the digital repository will be used to collect, arrange and preserve a wide variety of digital objects in different formats and structures while storing and archiving digital objects and ensuring access through continuous preservation actions. The Library already contributes to a trusted digital repository through PANDORA.

The Library is committed to achieving international digital preservation standards and best practice in the delivery of digital objects.