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Toward distributed infrastructures for digital preservation: the roles of collaboration and trust
Toward distributed infrastructures for digital preservation: the roles of collaboration and trust
Toward distributed infrastructures for digital preservation: the roles of collaboration and trust
Toward distributed infrastructures for digital preservation: the roles of collaboration and trust
Toward distributed infrastructures for digital preservation: the roles of collaboration and trust
Toward distributed infrastructures for digital preservation: the roles of collaboration and trust
Toward distributed infrastructures for digital preservation: the roles of collaboration and trust
Toward distributed infrastructures for digital preservation: the roles of collaboration and trust
Toward distributed infrastructures for digital preservation: the roles of collaboration and trust
Toward distributed infrastructures for digital preservation: the roles of collaboration and trust
Toward distributed infrastructures for digital preservation: the roles of collaboration and trust
Toward distributed infrastructures for digital preservation: the roles of collaboration and trust
Toward distributed infrastructures for digital preservation: the roles of collaboration and trust
Toward distributed infrastructures for digital preservation: the roles of collaboration and trust
Toward distributed infrastructures for digital preservation: the roles of collaboration and trust
Toward distributed infrastructures for digital preservation: the roles of collaboration and trust
Toward distributed infrastructures for digital preservation: the roles of collaboration and trust
Toward distributed infrastructures for digital preservation: the roles of collaboration and trust
Toward distributed infrastructures for digital preservation: the roles of collaboration and trust
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Toward distributed infrastructures for digital preservation: the roles of collaboration and trust

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Presentation given at: Curating our Digital Scientific Heritage: a Global Collaborative Challenge, 3rd International Digital Curation Conference, Washington, D.C., December 11-13, 2007

Presentation given at: Curating our Digital Scientific Heritage: a Global Collaborative Challenge, 3rd International Digital Curation Conference, Washington, D.C., December 11-13, 2007

Published in: Technology, Education
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  • 1. Toward distributed infrastructures for digital preservation: the roles of collaboration and trust Michael Day DCC Research Team UKOLN, University of Bath Bath BA2 7AY, United Kingdom [email_address]
  • 2. Presentation outline
    • Thinking about infrastructure requirements for the present and future
    • Not primarily about technologies, but about the need for inter-organisational collaboration
    • Main foci:
      • Collaboration, specifically research collaboration models and their potential influence on data curation practices
      • The role of of trust in collaborative networks
  • 3. The need for deep infrastructure
    • Recognised as far back as 1996 by the Task Force on Archiving of Digital Information:
      • Digital preservation involves the "grander problem of organizing ourselves over time and as a society ... [to manoeuvre] effectively in a digital landscape" (p. 7)
      • Also identified the need for infrastructures that could support distributed networks of digital repositories (and other services)
  • 4. Intra-organisational collaboration
    • Intra-organisational collaboration is increasingly important in many different contexts, e.g.:
      • Commerce (public-private partnerships, outsourcing, strategic alliances, etc.)
      • Institutional repository networks
      • Scientific research and development
        • Research collaboration is a well-established phenomenon that has been studied by sociologists of science (and others)
        • Collaboration has an influence on data sharing and curation
  • 5. Research collaboration (1)
    • The nature of collaboration differs markedly between academic disciplines
    • Collaboration exists on a continuum that includes:
      • Informal social networks
        • Helps to define disciplinary norms and interpretational paradigms
      • Formalised, semi-permanent organisations
        • Traditionally most common in "big-science" domains, e.g. high energy physics, space science
        • The growth of e-science has emphasised the collaborative nature of research
  • 6. Research collaboration (2)
    • A study of the physical sciences (Chompalov, et al ., 2002) broadly identified four different organisational models:
      • Bureaucratic - formalised and hierarchical structures with clear lines of authority
      • Leaderless - formalised structures, but collegiate
      • Non-specialised - Broadly hierarchical, but with unspecialised division of labour
      • Participatory - fundamentally egalitarian
  • 7. Research collaboration (3)
    • Chompalov, et al . found that collaboration models may have an influence on knowledge production and data sharing
      • Suggestion that non-specialised collaborations were most representative of domains where data collection needs to be standardised across several collecting sites
      • Relationships between collaboration type and data acquisition and sharing practices were quite complex
  • 8. Research collaboration (4)
    • It is unclear what all this might mean for data curation:
      • Collaborative data curation facilities might emerge first in sub-disciplines that have a more participatory collaboration pattern or otherwise have a strong emphasis on data sharing
      • Need for more systematic research into this across all research domains
        • The Digital Curation Centre's SCARP studies will provide detailed accounts of selected domains
  • 9. Collaboration for data curation (1)
    • Currently focused at the disciplinary or sub-disciplinary level
    • Embedded within particular research communities
    • Takes advantage of the specialised knowledge available within particular "designated communities"
    • Common standards emerge where there is a need for data sharing
    • The existence of common standards make data centres and repositories viable
  • 10. Collaboration for data curation (2)
    • The nature of the traditional research enterprise (and its funding structures) means that there was little demand for collaboration on data curation across disciplinary borders
    • The fundamentally collaborative nature of e-research should make us challenge this:
      • A need to pool resources and expertise
      • A need for supporting infrastructures
    • Infrastructure requirements are often overlooked and are likely to be problematic
  • 11. Collaboration for preservation
    • Growing interest in the socio-economic and cultural processes that underpin digital preservation
      • Strategic alliances
        • National initiatives, e.g. DPC, NDIIPP, nestor
        • European Alliance for Permanent Access
      • Co-operative ventures
        • Many different models for national networks
        • International co-operation can be focused through organisations like IFLA or CDNL
        • International co-operation on specific challenges through initiatives like the International Internet Preservation Consortium (IIPC)
  • 12. Collaboration for repositories (1)
    • Institutional repositories:
      • Development of IRs has helped to focus attention on the importance of collaboration
      • Interoperability (currently based on OAI-PMH) means that IRs rarely work in isolation
      • IRs work in a 'service-oriented' context
        • Services that enhance metadata, improve subject access (terminology services), that support citation linking and research assessment
        • Services that provide long-term preservation (e.g. the DARE programme in the Netherlands)
  • 13. Collaboration for repositories (2)
    • SHERPA DP:
      • Proposed disaggregated model for a shared preservation environment
      • Developed framework based on OAIS reference model
    • PRESERV:
      • IR interaction with multiple third-party services
        • Bit-level preservation, preservation planning, object characterisation and validation (e.g., using registry tools like PRONOM-DROID)
  • 14. The role of trust in collaborations
    • Trust is a concept explored extensively in management science
      • Defined in terms of the confidence that parties have in the actions, intentions and goodwill of others, within a given context
      • Understood in terms of vulnerability:
        • "The willingness of a party to be vulnerable to the actions of another party based on the expectation that the other will perform a particular action important to the trustor, irrespective of the ability to monitor or control that other party" (Mayer, et al ., 1995, p. 712)
  • 15. Trust and control
    • Trust in inter-organisational networks
      • Parties accept a level of vulnerability, in exchange for certain benefits, e.g. in sharing risk or knowledge
      • Inter-organisational trust is developmental
        • Successful partnerships have higher levels of trust
        • High-levels of trust can have risks (e.g. Enron)
      • Trust is contrasted with 'control,' i.e. the processes used to monitor and enforce actions
        • "Trust is good, control is better" (adapted from Lenin)
        • Trust and control can work together (a duality)
  • 16. Trustworthy repositories (1)
    • The main current focus is on the development of criteria for the evaluation of repositories and other preservation services
      • A requirement articulated by the Task Force on Archiving of Digital Information (1996)
      • Current initiatives include:
        • Trusted Repositories Audit & Certification (TRAC) framework
        • Digital Curation Centre and Digital Preservation Europe's DRAMBORA toolkit takes an approach to self-assessment based on risk assessment
        • Proposed ISO standard
  • 17. Trustworthy repositories (2)
    • Audit and certification frameworks
      • Are examples of control mechanisms
      • Focus not just on technical suitability, but on organisational and financial viability and sustainability
      • Two main approaches
        • External audit (ISO model)
        • Self-assessment
      • Enables the development of shared organisational cultures that are focused on solving problems in an incremental way
  • 18. Conclusions
    • Trust is an important factor in collaborative networks, e.g.:
      • Strategic alliances, research projects and shared infrastructures
    • Established cultural heritage organisations can build on their existing competences (and legal mandates)
    • Scientific data archives gain trust by their close integration into disciplines
    • Collaboration and trust are important topics that will repay further investigation
  • 19. References cited
    • Chompalov, I., et al . (2002). "The organisation of scientific collaboration." Research Policy , 31: 749-767.
    • Mayer, R.C., et al . (1995). "An integrative model of organisational trust." Academy of Management Review , 20: 709-734.

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