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Cost-Benefit Analysis of a Shared Digital Long-Term Preservation System


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This paper is a presentation of the cost-benefit analysis of digital long-term preservation (LTP) that was conducted as a part of the Finnish Na-tional Digital Library Project (NDL) in 2010. …

This paper is a presentation of the cost-benefit analysis of digital long-term preservation (LTP) that was conducted as a part of the Finnish Na-tional Digital Library Project (NDL) in 2010.
The analysis was based on the assumption that as many as 200 archives, libraries, and museums will share a LTP system. The term ”system” shall be understood as encompassing not only information technology, but also human resources, organiza-tional structures, policies and funding mecha-nisms.
The cost analysis shows that a LTP system will incur, over 12 first years, cumulative costs of 42 million euros, i.e. in average 3.5 million euros per annum. Human resources and investments on information technology are the major cost factors. – After the initial stages, the analysis predicts an-nual costs of circa 4 million euros.
The analysis compared scenarios with and without a shared LTP system. The results point to remarka-ble benefits of a shared system. In the costs of de-veloping and implementation stages, a shared sys-tem shows an advantage of 30 million euros, against the alternative scenario consisting of 5 independent LTP solutions. During the later stag-es, the advantage is estimated at 10 million euros per annum. The cumulative cost benefit over first 12 years would be circa 100 million euros.

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  • 1. Cost-Benefit Analysis of a Shared Digital Long-Term Preservation (LTP) SystemLiber 2011 Keskitalo National Library of FinlandPL 26, 00014 University of
  • 2. Outline
    Context: the National Digital Library Inititative
    Tools and basicassumptions
  • 3. National Digital Library
    Improvingavailability, usability, and preservation of digitalmaterials in libraries, archives, and museums.
    Common userinterfaceinfrastructure
    Digitization of culturalheritagematerials
    Partof the development of national electronicservices and infrastructures. (UbiquitousInformationSociety action plan; GovernmentResolution on the Objectives of the National InformationSocietyPolicy)
  • 4. The National Digital Library
  • 5. NDL: Long-TermPreservation System
  • 6. FutureGovernance of the NDL
    Ministry of Education & Culture
    LTP System admin(to bechosen)
    User Interfaceadmin =The National Library
    CSC (infrastructure)
  • 7. NDL givens for the Future LTP System
    LTP Section Final Report
    NDL Enterprise Architecture; with the Standards Portfolio
    NDL System of Governance
    General acceptance of the concept of the LTP system
  • 8. Why LTP Costsare a Challenge?
    Digital materialsneedconstantcare
    Electricity, cooling
    Digital materialsneedriskanalysis and preservationprocedures
    Migration, emulation, etc.
  • 9. Cost Analysis
    LTP is aboutbuilding a system of funding and governancethatcanensureusability of materials.
    The path is chosenbybalancingcosts and benefits in the long run.
    Goodunderstanding of Life CycleCosts is a must.
    Set criteria, assumptions, limitations
    Identifycostfactors; estimatecosts; rankalternatives.
    Building costs, runningcosts, maintenancecosts
  • 10. Tools Used in Analysis
    LifecycleInformation for E-Literature (LIFE)
    Designed for digitalmaterials
    Standard CostModel (SCM)
    Life CycleCosts (LCC)
    Cost – Benefit Analysis (CBA)
  • 11. LIFE2
  • 12. Preliminary Surveys
    Preservation and Use of Digital Materials. Memorandum of the Working Group on Long-TermPreservation and Usability of Digital Materials. Ministry of Education: Reports 2008:2.
    ”IdentifyingBenefits of the LTP Project and IncreasingOrganizations’ Preparedness”, December 2009. Jaakko Asplund (Salivirta & Partners)
    Digital Materials in Archives, Libraries, and Museums. December 2009. Juhani Koivunen (Netum Konsultointi)
  • 13. Assumptions: Amount of Data
  • 14. Assumptions: Scale and GrowthRate
  • 15. Amount of data underestimated
    Especiallyresearch data badlyrepresented
  • 16. Assumptions: Level of Services
    Differentorganizations, differentmaterials
    Organizationsareresponsible to preparematerials for preservation
    Metadata minimumrequirementsmet
    METS packaging
    LTP System mayprovideadditionalconsultancy and services, e.g. METS packaging software service
    Level of involvement in LTP decision-making and operationmayvary
    Advanced disseminationup to the organizations
  • 17. Assumptions on Technology
    Severalcopies – on different media – in separatelocations
    E.g. One copy on disk (S-ATA), two on tapes (backup copy, archival copy)
    Twofull-servicelocations + oneinternalarchivelocation
    Materialsaccessible ”in a fewseconds”
    Fall of priceswillmatchincrease of volume
  • 18.
  • 19. Assumptions: Costs of Human Resources
    Averagesalaries for specialists, management, adminstrativesupport
    Estimation of annualincreases
    Employer’scosts (30 % of salary)
    Costs of premises (750 € / month / person)
    10 specialistsrequire 1 manager and 0.5 assistant
    10 % of the sum of salariesused in outsourcedtraining, consultancy, auditing, etc.
  • 20. CostFactors: Human Resources
  • 21. CostFactors: Investmens
  • 22. CostFactors: Fixed & VariableCosts
  • 23. Characteristics of the hypothetical LTP System
    200 institutionsparticipate (manyverysmall).
    Starts with 700 Terabytes, increases to 4,000 Tb in 7 years.
    Planning and implementationphasedoversixyears.
    Twogeographicallyseparatemirrorsites with allservicesavailable; plus a ”darkarchive”.
    Stores materials in severalcopies, in severallocations, on severaltypes of media.
    Conductsrisk management and preservationoperations
    10 % of contentsmigratedannually
    Materialsareowned, and ultimatelycontrolledby the participatingorganizations
    Differentlevels of service to diferentorganizations
  • 24. EstimatedCosts
    42 M€ for years 1-12 (planning and implementationstages)
    Plus 3,4 M€ for a ”darkarchive”
    Afteryear 12, runningcostsstable 4 M€ per annum
  • 25. Costs of a Shared LTP System
    Dark Archive (option)
    Total Costs
  • 26. Main Division of Costs
    Human Resources
    FixedCosts of RunningOperations
    VariableCostsof Operations and Systems
  • 27. QualitativeBenefits of a Shared LTP System
  • 28. QuantitativeBenefits
    Translation of qualitativebenefits into money values
    Types of savings:
    Savings in performance (goodsproduced)
    Comparativesavings (againstalternativescenarios)
    Major savingsby
    Lowercosts of LTP systems
    Cheaper management of materials
  • 29. LowerCosts of LTP Systems
    Implementationstage: 30 million € over
    Productionstage: 8 million € per annum
    Against 5 separate LTP systems
    Savings in humanresources and investments
  • 30. Cheaper Management of Materials
    In production, 2.5 million € per annum
    Compared to adminstartion, qualityassurance, and disseminationdone in the organizations
  • 31. BetterPreservationResults
    0.5 million € per annum
    Compared to
    2 % of digitizedmaterialsbeingdamaged in lack of LTP
    Digitizationcost: 1.3 € per an object
    ”Severalmillioneuros per annum”
  • 32. Balance of Benefits of a Shared LTP System
  • 33. Summary of Costs and Benefits
    42 M€ for years 1-12 (planning and implementationstages)
    Plus 3,4 M€ for a ”darkarchive”
    Afteryear 12, runningcostsstable4 M€ per annum
    Savings of a shared LTP system
    30 M€ duringyears 1-12
    10 M€ per annumafterthat
    Cumulativebenefitduringfirst 12 years: 100 M€
  • 34. LessosLearnedaboutCosts and Benefit
    Increase of costsovertime is tolerable
    Costsaremanageable in the scenarioused
    Digital preservationhasbenefits
    Sharedsystem is a feasible option
  • 35. LessonsLearnedabout the Process
    Therearemethodsthatlendthemselves to analysingcosts and benefits of LTP
    Inexactfiguresarebetterthan no figures at all
    Allvaluescan and mustbeexpressed in money
  • 36. Thankyou!