Vision Statement

Our overall goal is to stem the tide of the loss of precious anthropological data comprised of qualitative and quantitative research materials, both digital and non-digital. We aim for a discipline-wide plan for digital preservation and access (DPA). This includes gaining acceptance in the anthropological community for common reference standards and metadata.

Long-term Goals

• Advance digital re-use and interoperability of data within and between the four broad divisions of anthropology to encourage integrative research.

• Stimulate future continuity, adoption and cumulative improvements of DPA by developing open-source tools and online services that build on state of the art technologies to assist anthropologists in applying accepted DPA standards for legacy conversion and future data ingestion.

• Establish a community of anthropologists engaged in finding solutions to digital preservation and access problems in anthropology

• Establish a network of trusted digital open-access archives for the anthropological community designed for interoperability and long-term preservation following recommendations of a anthropological standards body.

• Integrate individual “silo” projects of digital data preservation and access both within and across the subfields.

Short Term Goals

• Promote the outline of a strategic plan through the web, list-servs, newsletter reports, conference papers, liaising with anthropological organizations and with additional organizations engaged in or planning DPA activities.

• After obtaining commentary and suggested revisions, post a revised plan online in the spring of 2010.

• In the absence of a coordinated network of trusted digital archives, promote better practices for digitization and preservation using existing resources.

• Apply for funding to advance this agenda.

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One Comment

  1. Joel Halpern says:

    In this time of extreme budget retrenchment do such projected efforts have any reasonable chance of funding?

    Wouldn’t a more useful approach be to pursue a very specific goal that could be achieved?

    Wouldn’t the American Anthropological Association in general and perhaps certain of its sub-organizations such as the Assn. of Senior Anthropologists (I think I have the title right) perhaps be of some use to collect basic information on this problem. Maybe with the right focus a private non-governmental foundation might be interested in purusing one aspect of thesse diverse goals?

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