November 2010

10th Anniversary of the Digital Preservation List

The JISCMail Digital Preservation list passes a significant milestone this month – its 10th birthday and there is a lead item on the anniversary in the November issue of the JISCMail Newsletter . Today there are some 1300 subscribers in over 30 countries.

The first message was posted on 13th November 2000 and there have been many thousands of postings since then. Just for fun some randomly selected events from the archives of the last 10 years:

  • 2000 In December 2000, US Congress appropriated $100 million for NDIIPP.
  • 2002 In February of 2002 a newly formed Digital Preservation Coalition in the United Kingdom addressed the House of Commons about the importance of considering long term digital preservation.
  • 2004 The Digital Curation Centre had its public launch in November 2004.
  • 2005 First Digital Preservation Award presented at the British Museum on 22 November 2005.
  • 2006 In August 2006, the European Commission adopted a Recommendation on the digitisation and online accessibility of cultural material and digital preservation.
  • 2008 The Guardian Newspaper on Tuesday 30th September devoted an editorial “In praise of…preserving digital memories” to digital preservation and the iPRES 2008 conference in London.

HEFCE, REF, and the Impact of Research

The Report from the Research Excellence Framework (REF) institutional pilots of impact assessment were published recently by HEFCE.

There was also some discussion in Times Higher with articles  on the general implications and the other on specific implications for the humanities.

Having read the report, I think the REF Impact assessment is highly relevant and important for many UK research data projects and probably of interest to others internationally.  For me the main points of interest were:

  • The introduction of the Impact component of REF can support the business case for research data infrastructure as that infrastructure could help institutions promote/record impact;
  • The REF timeline 2011-2014;
  • The pilot exercise affirmed the use of case studies as the best approach for REF;
  • Use of “reach” and “significance” to assess impact in REF and the initial draft list of impact indicators in Appendix G (draft ‘common menu’ of impact indicators) from the REF draft guidelines;
  • The KRDS Benefits Taxonomy has a good fit to a lot of its discussion with dimension 1 (direct/indirect), dimension 2 near-term/long term, and dimension 3 private/public – although for REF only non-academic stakeholders are in scope;
  • The “Best Practice” (section 7) and “Bad Practice” (section 8 ) of the report provide good generic guidance on completing impact case studies.

The Pilot report notes that the impact element in the REF has the potential to create a number of positive incentives, including:

  • Encouraging collaboration between HE and industry, the public sector and third sector.
  • Encouraging institutions to support their researchers in more fully realising the wider benefits of the research they undertake. This should include support for realising the benefits from ‘pure’ or ‘basic’ research, as well as supporting research with more immediate potential application.

consultation deadline (12 November) for JISC e-Journal Archiving Draft White Paper

Dear all

A quick reminder to anyone wishing to respond to the JISC consultation on the draft e-Journal Archiving White paper that the deadline for comments is the end of next week (Friday 12 November).

Details of the consultation and the draft white paper are available here.