Preservation (library and archival science)

Preservation (library and archival science)

Preservation is a branch of library and information science concerned with maintaining or restoring access to artifacts, documents and records through the study, diagnosis, treatment and prevention of decay and damage. [cite web |url=|title=A Glossary of Archival and Records Terminology|accessdate=2007-05-11 |publisher= [ Society of American Archivists] ]

It should be distinguished from conservation which refers to the treatment and repair of individual items to slow decay or restore them to a usable state. [cite web |url=|title=A Glossary of Archival and Records Terminology |accessdate=2007-05-11 |publisher= [ Society of American Archivists] ] Conservation is occasionally used interchangeably with preservation, particularly outside the professional literature. [cite web |url=|title=Preservation of Cultural Artifacts |accessdate=2007-05-11 |publisher= [ Southern Polytechnic State University] ]



Although preservation as a formal profession in libraries and archives dates from the twentieth century, its philosophy and practice has roots in many earlier traditions. [cite book | first=Mary Lynn | last=Ritzenthaler | year=1993 | title=Preserving Archives and Manuscripts | chapter= | editor= | others= | pages= | location=Chicago | publisher=Society of American Archivists | id= | url= | authorlink= ] In library science, preservation is treated as an active and intentional process, as opposed to the passive sense of preservation that might be applied to paleontological or archaeological finds. The survival of these items is a matter of chance, from an information science perspective, while the preservation of them after their discovery is a matter of intentional activity.

Human record-keeping arguably dates back to the cave painting boom of the upper paleolithic, some 32,000-40,000 years ago. More direct antecedents are the writing systems that developed in the 4th millennium B.C. Written record keeping and information sharing practices, along with oral tradition, sustain and transmit information from one group to another. This level of preservation has been supplemented over the last century with the professional practice of preservation and conservation in the cultural heritage community.

#Oral tradition or oral culture, the transmission of information from one generation to the next without a writing system.
#Antiquarian practices, including scribal practice, burial practice, the libraries at Pergamum, Alexandria and other ancient archives.
#Medieval practices, including the scriptorium and relic collection
#Renaissance and the changing conception of artists and works of art
#Enlightenment and the Encyclopedists
# Romantic movement’s imperative to preserve

ignificant events

*1933: William Barrow introduces the field of conservation to paper deacidification when he publishes a paper on the acid paper problem. In later studies, Barrow tested paper from American books made between 1900 and 1949 and learned that after forty years the books had lost on average 96 percent of their original strength; after less than ten years, they had already lost 64 percent. Barrow determined that this rapid deterioration was not the direct result of using wood-pulp fibers, since rag papers of this period were also aging rapidly, but rather due to the residual sulfuric acid produced in both rag and wood pulp papers. Manufacturing methods used after 1870 employed sulfuric acid for sizing and bleaching the paper. Earlier papermaking methods left the final product only mildly alkaline or even neutral. Such paper has maintained its strength for 300 to 800 years, despite sulfur dioxide and other air pollutants. [cite journal |last= Stevens|first=Rolland E. |coauthors= |year=1968 |month=October |title=The Library |journal=The Journal of Higher Education, (), |volume=39 |issue=7 |pages=407–409|url= |accessdate=2007-05-12 |doi=10.2307/1980093] Barrow's 1933 article on the fragile state of wood pulp paper predicted the life expectancy, or "LE," of this paper was approximately 40-50 years. At that point the paper would begin to show signs of natural decay, and he concluded that research for a new media on which to write and print was needed.
*1966: The Flood of the River Arno in Florence, Italy damaged or destroyed millions of rare books and lead to the development of restoration laboratories and new methods in conservation. Instrumental in this process was conservationist Peter Waters, who lead a group of volunteers, called "mud angels", in restoring thousands of books and papers. This event awakened many historians, librarians, and other professionals to the importance of having a preservation plan. Many consider this flood to be one of the worst disasters since the burning of the Alexandria Library in ancient Rome. It spurred a resurgence in the profession of preservation and conservation worldwide.
*1987: Terry Saunders releases the film which examines paper embrittlement resulting from acid decay
*1989: March 7 ["Commitment Day"] Major US print publishers convene at NYPL to endorse a community-wide commitment to utilizing ISO 9706 certified permanent durable paper in order to combat the acid paper epidemic.

ignificant people in the history of preservation

*William Barrow (1904 – 1967) was an American chemist and paper conservator, and a pioneer of library and archives conservation. He introduced the field of conservation to paper deacidification through alkalization.
*Paul N. Banks (1934 - 2000) was Conservator and Head of the Conservation Department at the Newberry Library from 1964 to 1981, and published regularly on bookbinding, book and paper conservation and problems related to conservation. He designed and implemented a curriculum for Columbia University's School of Library Science that dealt directly with preservation training.
*Pamela Darling, author and historian, was Preservation Specialist for the Association of Research Libraries. Her works include materials to aid libraries in establishing their own comprehensive preservation programs.
*Carolyn Harris worked as head of Columbia University Libraries' Preservation Division from 1981 until 1987, where she worked closely with Paul Banks. She published extensive research throughout her career, especially dealing with mass deacidification of wood-pulp paper.
*Peter Waters, former Conservation Officer at the Library of Congress in Washington, DC, worked in the areas of disaster recovery and preparedness, and the salvaging of water-damaged paper goods.
*Nicholson Baker is a contemporary American novelist and author of "Double Fold", a criticism of libraries' destruction of paper-based media.
*Patricia Battin, as the first president of the Commission on Preservation and Access, worked to organize a national campaign both for the use of alkaline paper in publishing companies and for a national program of preservation microfilming.
*John F. Dean, Preservation and Conservation Librarian at Cornell University, has made contributions towards improving preservation efforts in developing countries. Specifically, Dean has created online tutorials for library conservation and preservation in Southeast Asia and Iraq and the Middle East.

The Paul Banks and Carolyn Harris Preservation Award for outstanding preservation specialists in library and archival science, is given annually by the [ Association for Library Collections & Technical Services] , a subdivision of the American Library Association. It is awarded in recognition of professional preservation specialists who have made significant contributions to the field. Banks/Harris award winners:
*Sally Buchanan 2001 - Buchanan received the award in recognition of years of service in the preservation field while an associate professor at the University of Pittsburgh School of Information Science
*Ellen McCrady 2002 - From 1975 to 2004, McCrady edited and published the " [ Abbey Newsletter] ", covering important information for preservation professionals. She also conducted research regarding papermaking and acid testing.
*John F. Dean 2003 - Since its inception in 1985, Dean has led the Department of Preservation and Conservation at Cornell University.
* [ Jan Merrill-Oldham] 2004 - As the Malloy-Rabinowitz Preservation Librarian at Harvard University, Merrill-Oldham oversees the Weissman Preservation Center and the Preservation and Imaging Department.
*Paul Conway 2005 - Conway is an associate professor in the University of Michigan School of Information and has worked with Yale and Duke University after beginning his career at the Gerald R. Ford Presidential Library. His research and educational work focuses primarily on digital preservation and electronic media.
*Gary Frost 2006 - Currently the University Conservator at the University of Iowa Libraries, Frost has been an educator and practitioner in the field of library preservation for almost 40 years. [cite web |url=|title=The University of Iowa Libraries Preservation Department|accessdate=2008-07-27 |publisher= [ The University of Iowa] ] Frost is actively involved in library preservation and maintains an online blog at [] . [cite web |url=||accessdate=2008-07-27 |publisher=Gary Frost]
* Walter Henry 2007 - Henry, a conservator at the Stanford University Libraries and Academic Information Resources, is the creator of [ Conservation OnLine] and the [ Conservation DistList]
* Janet Gertz 2008 - Director for Preservation, Columbia University Libraries has been chair of ALCTS' Preservation and Reformatting Section (PARS). She has taught, spoken and published widely on topics ranging from traditional library preservation, disaster preparedness, commercial binding, and preservation microfilming to digital preservation, audio preservation, preservation metadata and large-scale mass digitization. She is an adjunct faculty member in the Palmer School of Library and Information Science, Long Island University, and has been a a guest lecturer at Rutgers' Preservation Institute and at Queen's College.


Care and handling

#Circulating collections
#Special collections

Environmental controls

Environmental controls are necessary to facilitate the preservation of organic library materials and are especially important to monitor in rare and special collections. Key environmental factors to watch include temperature, relative humidity, pests, pollutants, and light exposure.

In general, the lower the temperature is, the better it is for the collection. However, since books and other materials are often housed in areas with people, a compromise must be struck to accommodate human comfort. A reasonable temperature to accomplish both goals is 65-68˚F however, if possible, film and photography collections should be keep in a segregated area at 55˚F. [Lull, W.P. (1990). "Conservation environment guidelines for libraries and archives; with the assistance of Paul N. Banks." Albany, NY: The University of the State of New York, The State Education Dept., The New York State Library, Division of Library Development.]

Books and other materials take up and give off moisture making them sensitive to relative humidity. Very high humidity encourages mold growth and insect infestations. Low humidity causes materials to lose their flexibility. Fluctuations in relative humidity are more damaging then a constant humidity in the middle or low range. Generally, the relative humidity should be between 30-50% with as little variation as possible, however recommendations on specific levels to maintain vary depending on the type of material, i.e. paper-based, film, etc. [cite web |url=|title=Temperature, Relative Humidity, Light, and Air Quality: Basic Guidelines for Preservation
accessdate=2007-12-09 |publisher= [ Northeast Document Conservation Center]
] .

The Image Permanence Institute provides a downloadable calculator to assist in determining the ideal indoor temperature when taking into account the outdoor dew point. This calculator also provides information on the risk on condensation and how many days to mold based on the entered scenario. [“Dew Point Calculator.” Image Permanence Institute. Retrieved April 23, 2008 from>]

Pests, such as insects and vermin, eat and destroy paper and the adhesive that secures book bindings. Food and drink in libraries, archives, and museums can increase the attraction of pests. [ [ UCSD Libraries Preservation Department. “Why is Eating and Drinking in the Library Discouraged?” 2006. UCSD. 18 June 2008] ] An Integrated Pest Management system is one way to control pests in libraries.

Particulate and gaseous pollutants, such as soot, ozone, sulfur dioxide, oxides of nitrogen, can cause dust, soiling, and irreversible molecular damage to materials. Pollutants are exceedingly small and not easily detectable or removable. A special filtration system in the building’s HVAC is a helpful defense.

Exposure to light also has a significant effect on library materials. It is not only the light visible to humans that can cause damage, but also ultraviolet light and infrared radiation. Measured in lux or the amount of lumens/m2, the generally accepted level of illumination with sensitive materials is limited to 50 lux per day. Materials receiving more lux than recommended can be placed in dark storage periodically to prolong the original appearance of the object [Thomson, G. "The Museum Environment". 2nd ed. London: Butterworths, 1986] .

Recent concerns about the impact of climate change on the management of cultural heritage objects as well as the historic environment [cite web |url=|title=Climate change and the historic environment
accessdate=2008-04-27 |publisher= [ Centre for Sustainable Heritage, University College London.]
] has prompted research efforts to investigate alternative climate control methods and strategies [cite web |url=|title=From the Outside in: Preventive conservation, sustainability, and environmental conservation |accessdate=2008-04-25 |publisher= [ Getty Conservation Institute] ] that include the implementation of alternative climate control systems to replace or supplement traditional high-energy consuming HVAC systems as well as the introduction of passive preservation techniques [cite web |url=|title=Collections care, human comfort, and climate control: A case study at the Casa de Rui Barbosa Museum |accessdate=2008-04-25 |publisher= [ Getty Conservation Institute] ] .

Decision making and criteria

Making a proper decision is an important factor before starting preservation practices. Decision making for preservation should be made considering significance and value of materials. Significance is considered to be comprised of two major components: importance and quality [cite web |url= |title=A Significance Recognition Scheme for Non-National Museums and Galleries in Scotland |accessdate=2007-10-08 |publisher= [ Scottish Museums Council] ] . “Importance” relates to the collection’s role as a record, and “quality” covers comprehensiveness, depth, uniqueness, authenticity and reputation of the collection. Moreover, analyzing the significance of materials can be used to uncover more about their meaning [Citation | last =Dorner | first =Daniel | last2 =Young | first2 =Sophie | publication-date = 2007 | title = A Regional Approach to Identifying Items of National Significance Held by Small Cultural Institutions in New Zealand | url = | accessdate=2007-10-08] . Assessment of significance can also aid in documenting the provenance and context to argue the case for grant funding for the object and collection [cite web |url= |title=Significance - A Guide to Assessing the Significance of Cultural Heritage Objects and Collections |accessdate=2007-10-08 |publisher= [ Heritage Collections Council (Australia)] ] .

Forms of significance can be historically, culturally, socially, or spiritually significant. In the preservation context, libraries and archives make decisions in different ways. In libraries, decision-making likely targets existing holding materials, where as in archives, decisions for preservation are often made when they acquire materials. Therefore, different criteria might be needed on different occasions. In general, for archive criteria, the points include: 1) the characteristics of a record (purpose, creator, etc.); 2) the quality of the information in the record; 3) the record in context (part of a series or not); 4) potential use and possible limitations; and 5) the cost against the benefits from its existence [Citation | last =Ham | first =Daniel | last2 =Young | first2 =Sophie | publication-date = 2007 | title = A Regional Approach to Identifying Items of National Significance Held by Small Cultural Institutions in New Zealand | location=Chicago | publisher= [ Society of American Archivists] ] . For library criteria, the following are evidence of significance: 1) uniqueness, 2) irreplaceability, 3) high level of impact – over time or place, 4) high level of influence, 5) representation of a type, and 6) comparative value (rarity, completeness, integrity relative to others of its kind) [cite journal |last= Pymm |first=Bob |coauthors= |year=2006 |month= |title=Building Collections for All Time: the Issue of Significance |journal=AARL (Australian Academic Research Libraries) |volume=37 |issue=1 |pages= 61–73] .


Since the 1970s, the Northeast Document Conservation Center has stated that the study of understanding the needs of the library is inherently important to the survival of archives and libraries. In order for the preservation of a collection to survive for a long time it is important that a systematic preservation plan is in place. The first step in planning a preservation program is to assess the institution’s existing preservation needs. This process entails identifying the general and specific needs of the collection, establishing priorities, and gathering the resources to execute the plan. [ Citation | last =Patkus | first = Beth| publication-date = 2003 | title = Assessing Preservation Needs, A Self-Survey Guide | publication-place = Andover| publisher =Northeast Document Conservation Center| ]

Because budget and time limitations require priorities to be set, standards have been established by the profession to determine what should be preserved in a collection. Considerations include existing condition, rarity, and evidentiary and market values. With non-paper formats, the availability of equipment to access the information will be a factor (for example, playback equipment for audio-visual materials, or microform readers). An institution should determine how many, if any, other repositories hold the material, and consider coordinating efforts with those that do. [ Citation | last =Nichols | first =Stephen G. | last2 =Smith | first2 =Abby | publication-date = 2001 | title = The Evidence in Hand: Report of the Task Force on the Artifact in Library Collections | publication-place =Washington, D.C. | publisher =Council on Library and Information Resources | isbn = 1887334882 | oclc = 48623491 | url =]

Institutions should establish an environment conducive to preservation changes, involve staff, and create an understanding among administration and staff. The first steps an institution should implement, according to the NEDCC, are to establish a policy that defines and charts the course of action and create a framework for carrying out goals and priorities.

There are three methods for carrying out a preservation survey: general preservation assessment, collection condition surveys, and an item-by-item survey. [ Citation | last =Matthews | first =Graham | publication-date = 1995 | title = “Surveying Collections: The importance of Condition Assessment for Preservation Management” | publication-place =Washington, D.C. | publisher =Journal of Librarianship and Information Science 27, no. 4 | ]

Selection for treatment determines the survival of materials and should be done by a specialist, whether in relation to an established collection development policy or on an item by item basis. [ Citation | last=Harris | first=Carolyn | author-link=Carolyn_Harris | year=2000 | contribution= Selection for Preservation | editor-last=Banks | editor-first=Paul N. | editor2-last=Pilette | editor2-first=Roberta | title=Preservation: Issues and Planning | place=Chicago | publisher=American Library Association | pages=206-224 | isbn = 0585376263 9780585376264 | oclc= 48139650] Once an object or collection has been chosen for preservation, the treatment must be determined that is most appropriate to the material and its repository. If the information is most important, reformatting or creation of a surrogate is a likely option. If the artifact itself is of value, it will receive conservation treatment, ideally of a reversible nature. [ Citation | last =Nichols | first =Stephen G. | last2 =Smith | first2 =Abby | publication-date = 2001 | title = The Evidence in Hand: Report of the Task Force on the Artifact in Library Collections | publication-place =Washington, D.C. | publisher =Council on Library and Information Resources | isbn = 1887334882 | oclc = 48623491 | url =]

Research and testing

With old media deteriorating or showing their vulnerabilities and new media becoming available, research remains active in the field of conservation and preservation. Everything from how to preserve paper media to creating and maintaining electronic resources is being explored by students and professionals in library and information science. The two main issues that most libraries tend to face are the rapid disintegration of acidic paper and water damage (due to flooding, plumbing problems, etc). Therefore, these areas of preservation, as well as new digital technologies, receive much of the research attention.

The American Library Association has many scholarly journals that publish articles on preservation topics, such as "College and Research Libraries, Information Technology and Libraries," and "Library Resources and Technical Services". Scholarly periodicals in this field from other publishers include "International Preservation News, Journal of the American Institute for Conservation", and "Collection Management" among many others.


Conservators should refer to the AIC Code of Ethics and Guidelines for Practice, [ [ " AIC CODE OF ETHICS AND GUIDELINES FOR PRACTICE"] ] which states that the conservation professional must “strive to attain the highest possible standards in all aspects of conservation.”

Ethics will play an important role in many aspects of the conservator's activities. When choosing which objects are in need of treatment, the conservator should do what is best for the object in question and not yield to pressure or opinion from outside sources.

Preservation of Cultural Objects

One instance in which these decisions may get tricky is when the conservator is dealing with cultural objects. The [ AIC Code of Ethics and Guidelines for Practice] has addressed such concerns, stating “All actions of the conservation professional must be governed by an informed respect for cultural property, its unique character and significance and the people or person who created it.” This can be applied in both the care and longterm storage of objects in archives and institutions.

The [ AIC Code of Ethics and Guidelines for Practice] also states: “While recognizing the right of society to make appropriate and respectful use of cultural property, the conservation professional shall serve as an advocate for the preservation of cultural property.” This statement speaks to the conservator’s need to balance his or her duty to conserve objects and maintain a collection with society’s right to have access and use of objects for their own cultural/religious purposes. While it is obvious that a member of a religion should be able to have access to an object or text that has spiritual value to them, it would be against the conservator’s ethics to then allow that object to incur damage from such use. The conservator should make sure that the care of the object is kept in mind when access to an object is granted. The object should remain in the best condition possible not only so it is preserved for prosperity, but also so that it can be studied by researchers and by members of the cultural or religious group that created it.

It is important that preservation specialists to be respectful of cultural property and the societies that created it, it is also important for them to be aware of international and national laws pertaining to stolen items. The [ AIC Code of Ethics and Guidelines for Practice] also states that:

"The conservation professional should be cognizant of laws and regulations that may have a bearing on professional activity. Among these laws and regulations are those concerning the rights of artists and their estates, occupational health and safety, sacred and religious material, excavated objects, endangered species, human remains, and stolen property."
In recent years there has been a rise in nations seeking out artifacts that have been stolen and are now in museums. In many cases museums are working with the nations to find a compromise to balance the need for reliable supervision as well as access for both the public and researchers. ["Rightful Owners." "Nature", Vol. 440 (6) 2006.]

Conservators are not just bound by ethics to treat cultural and religious objects with respect, but also in some cases by law. For example, in the United States, conservators must comply with the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act (NAGPRA). The [ First Archivists Circle] , a group of Native American archivists, has also created [ Protocols for Native American Archival Materials] . The non-binding guidelines are suggestions for libraries and archives with Native American archival materials.

With all these issues of respect and cultural sensitivity to consider, conservation and preservation issues are sure to arise. The care of cultural and sacred objects often affects the physical storage or the object. For example, sacred objects of the native peoples of the Western United States are supposed to be stored with sage to ensure their spiritual well being. The idea of storing an object with plant material is inherently problematic to an archival collection because of the possibility of insect infestation. When conservators have faced this problem, they have addressed it by using freeze-dried sage, thereby meeting both conservation and cultural needs.

Some individuals in the library science community have explored the possible moral responsibility to preserve all cultural phenomena, in regards to the concept of monumental preservation. [Cloonan, Michele V. [ "The Moral Imperative to Preserve"] , "Library Trends", Winter 2007. Retrieved on 2008-04-25.] Other advocates argue that such an undertaking is something that the indigenous or native communities that produce such cultural objects are better suited to perform. Currently, however, many indigenous communities are not financially able to support their own archives and museums. Still, indigenous archives are on the rise in the United States. [Cooper, Amy. "Issues in Native American Archives" Collection Management, Vol. 27 (2) 2002.]

Preservation and the library as a sacred institution

* In her book "Sacred Stacks: The Higher Purpose of Libraries and Librarianship," Nancy Kalikow Maxwell discusses how libraries are capable of performing some of the same functions as religion. Citation | last=Maxwell | first=Nancy Kalikow | title= Sacred Stacks: The Higher Purpose of Libraries and Librarianship | place=Chicago | publisher=American Library Association | year=2006 | isbn = 0838909175 ] Many librarians feel that their work is done for some higher purpose. The same can be said for preservation librarians. One instance of the library's role as sacred is to provide a sense of immortality: with the ever changing world outside, the library will remain stable and dependable. Preservation is a great help in this regard. Through digitization and reformatting, preservation librarians are able to retain material while at the same time adapting to new methods. In this way, libraries can adapt to the changes in user needs without changing the quality of the material itself. Through preservation efforts, patrons can rest assured that although materials are constantly deteriorating over time, the library itself will remain a stable, reliable environment for their information needs. Another sacred ability of the library is to provide information and a connection to the past. By working to slow down the processes of deterioration and decay of library materials, preservation practices help keep this link to the past alive.

Regional centers

*The Conservation Center for Art and Historic Artifacts in Philadelphia, PA. CCAHA is a non-profit conservation laboratory specializing in the treatment of art and historic artifacts on paper. The Center also trains museum and library professionals in disaster planning, records and archives management.

*The Northeast Document Conservation Center in Andover, MA. Since its inception in 1973, the Center has instructed institutions and organizations, as well as librarians, conservators, preservationists and museum professionals in preservation care and procedures. From 1995 to 2007, NEDCC presented its School for Scanning conference eleven times in cities across the United States. The school takes a leading role for digital preservation.

*The Southeastern Library Network is a not-for-profit membership cooperative of libraries and other information organizations in the southeastern United States. Established in 1973, as the largest regional library network in the U.S., SOLINET provides a variety of preservation education programs and workshops.

Vendor services

Many private entities have provide preservation and conservation services and supplies. Listed here are many of these businesses.

Conservation supplies

* [ ArchapeX]
* [ Archival Methods]
* [ Archivart]
* [ Carr McLean]
* [ Conservation Resources]
* [ Demco]
* [ Gaylord]
* [ Light Impressions]
* [ Hollinger Corp.]
* [ Metal Edge]
* [ Paige Company]
* [ Preservation Technologies]
* [ Talas]
* [ University Products]

Library binding

Library binding is a common preservation practice. The Library Binding Institute is the trade organization for library binders, and works with the American Library Association to maintain the [ Library Binding Standard] , ANSI Z39.78-2000.
* [ the Library Binding Institute]
* [ The HF Group]
* [ ICI Binding Corporation]
* [ Bridgeport Library Binding Services]
* [ Ocker & Trapp Library Binding, Inc.]
* [ Acme Bookbinding]

Conservators in private practice and conservation centers

* [ Conservators in Private Practice] from the American Institute for Conservation.
* [ Conservation Center for Art and Historic Artifacts]
* [ Northeast Document Conservation Center]

Exhibition and storage

* [ Benchmark]
* [ Casewerks]
* [ Delta Design Cabinets]
* [ Glasbau Hahn]
* [ Helmut Guenschel, Inc.]
* [ Small Corp]

Branches of preservation

tandard functions of preservation programs

*Collections Care refers to the general maintenance and preventive care of a collection as a whole. This can include activities such as security, environmental monitoring, preservation surveys and more specialized activities such as mass deacidification.
*Conservation refers to the treatment and repair of individual items to slow decay or restore them to a usable state. Conservation is occasionally used interchangeably with preservation, particularly outside the professional literature.
*Digital preservation refers to the maintenance of digitally stored information. This should not be confused with digitization, which is a process of creating digital information which must, in turn, be digitally preserved. Means of digital preservation include refreshing, migration, replication and emulation.
*Disaster Preparedness (RT: Disaster Plan / Business Continuation / Disaster Recovery / Disaster Mitigation Plan) refers to the practice of arranging for the necessary resources and planning the best course of action to prevent or minimize damage to a collection in the event of a disaster of any level of magnitude, whether natural or man-made.
*Reformatting refers to the practice of creating copies of an object in another type of data storage device. Reformatting processes include microfilming and digitization.

Media specific issues and treatments

**Leather Binding
*Ephemera and Realia
**Acid-free paper
**Japanese tissue
**Mummy paper
**Paper Splitting
**Parchment repair
**Preservation of Illuminated Manuscripts
*Moving image
**Moving Image Preservation Education
**Video recording
*Sound recording
**Preservation of magnetic audiotape
*Oral history preservation
*Language Preservation
*Visual material
**Still Photography
**Architectural reprography, a variety of technologies and media used to make multiple copies of original drawings or records created by architects, engineers, mapmakers and related professionals.
*Optical media preservation


One of the biggest challenges in the field of preservation today is educating a library's community, especially librarians and other staff, in the best ways to handle materials as well as the conditions in which particular materials will decay the least. This challenge is exacerbated by the fact that preservation is a peripheral element of most library science curricula; indeed, there are few places where one can receive a specialized education in preservation.

The primary degree granting institution for library and archival preservation is the University of Texas at Austin's School of Information Science. The conservation and preservation program is offered in partnership with the Kilgarlin Center for Preservation of the Cultural Record and trains both conservators and preservation administrators. Other conservation programs in the United States focus on Art Conservation and are considered to be more museum focused than library focused. These programs are all part of the Association of North American Graduate Programs in the Conservation of Cultural Property (ANAGPIC). [cite web |url=|title=Association of North American Graduate Programs in the Conservation of Cultural Property|accessdate=2007-05-11 |publisher= [ University of Texas School of Information] ]

The Rutgers Preservation Management Institute provides post-graduate training in preservation administration for working librarians who have already completed a Master's degree. [cite web |url=|title=Rutgers Preservation Management Institute |accessdate=2007-05-11 |publisher= Rutgers School of Communication, Information, and Library Studies] UT Austin also offers certificates of advanced study in conservation [cite web |url=|title=Conservation Program |accessdate=2007-05-11 |publisher= [ University of Texas School of Information] ] and preservation to librarians who already hold their MLS. [cite web |url=|title=Preservation Administration Program |accessdate=2007-05-11 |publisher= [ University of Texas School of Information] ]

Another educational resource available to preservationists is the Northeast Document Conservation Center or NEDCC. [cite web |url=|title=NEDCC |accessdate=2007-05-11 |publisher= [ Northeast Document Conservation Center] ] This institution was founded in 1973 as a reaction to the growing problem of paper deterioration occurring in repositories in the New England area. The Center provides institutions and organizations, as well as librarians, conservators, preservationists, and museum professionals, with help in learning proper care and procedures to better preserve the integrity of their collections. The institution provides a variety of services such as imaging, surveys and consultations, and digitation. They also assist with disaster planning. The educational opportunities it provides include provision of workshops, conferences, and specialized trainings. Additional online courses are also available. For instance, some of the workshops offered by the NEDCC include: Basic Preservation, Collections Care, Emergency Preparedness, Integrated Pest Management (IPM), Identification and Care of Photographs, Basic and Intermediate Book Repair, Basic Paper Repair, Preservation of Scrapbooks, Preservation Technologies, Holdings Maintenance, Creating and Maintaining Digital Collections, Scanning Training, and Grant Writing. [cite web |url=|title=Workshop Offerings|accessdate=2007-05-11 |publisher= [ Northeast Document Conservation Center] ] Additionally, the NEDCC is responsible for the creation of a Preservation Education Curriculum, which has been made available online to serve as an instructional aid for introductory preservation courses taught at Library and Information Science schools. [cite web |url=|title=Preservation Education Curriculum|accessdate=2008-07-27 |publisher= [ Northeast Document Conservation Center] ]

Additional preservation education is available to librarians through various professional organizations, such as:

*American Institute for Conservation of Historic and Artistic Works [cite web |url=|title=American Institute for Conservation of Historic and Artistic Works |accessdate=2007-05-11 |publisher= [ American Institute for Conservation of Historic and Artistic Works] ]
*American Library Association
*Amigos Library Services Preservation Service [cite web |url=|title=Amigos Library Services Preservation Service |accessdate=2007-05-11 |publisher= [ Amigos Library Services Preservation Service] ]
*Association for Information and Image Management (AIIM)
*Association for Recorded Sound Collections [cite web |url=|title=Association for Recorded Sound Collections |accessdate=2007-05-11 |publisher= [ Association for Recorded Sound Collections] ]
*Buffalo State College. Art Conservation Department, Buffalo, NY [cite web |url=|title=Buffalo State Art Conservation Department |accessdate=2007-05-11 |publisher= [ Buffalo State University] ]
*Campbell Center for Historic Preservation Studies, Mount Carroll, IL. [cite web |url=|title=Campbell Center for Historic Preservation Studies|accessdate=2007-05-11 |publisher= [ Campbell Center for Historic Preservation Studies] ]
*George Eastman House. School of Film & Video Preservation Rochester, NY [cite web |url=|title=George Eastman House |accessdate=2007-05-11 |publisher= [ George Eastman House] ]
*The Kilgarlin Center for Preservation of the Cultural Record [cite web |url=|title=The Kilgarlin Center for Preservation of the Cultural Record|accessdate=2007-05-11 |publisher= [ The Kilgarlin Center for Preservation of the Cultural Record] ]
*Library Binding Institute
*New York University. Conservation Center, Institute of Fine Arts, New York, NY [cite web |url=|title=Institute of Fine Arts|accessdate=2007-05-11 |publisher= [ New York University] ]
*North Bennet Street School. Boston, MA [cite web |url=|title=North Bennet Street School|accessdate=2007-05-11 |publisher= [ North Bennet Street School] ]
*Northeast Document Conservation Center (NEDCC)
* The Conservation Center for Art and Historic Artifacts in Philadelphia, PA
*Queen’s University. Master of Art Conservation Program, Ont, Canada [cite web |url=|title=Art Conservation Program |accessdate=2007-05-11 |publisher= [ Queen’s University] ]
* Rare Book School (RBS) at the University of Virginia
*Society of American Archivists
*Southeastern Library Network (SOLINET)
*University of Delaware. Winterthur Art Conservation Program, Newark, DE [cite web |url=|title=Winterthur Art Conservation Program |accessdate=2007-05-11 |publisher= [ University of Delaware] ]
*The National Archives [cite web |url=|title=Preservation Programs at the National Archives |accessdate=2007-05-11 |publisher= [ The National Archives and Records Administration of the United States of America] ]

Non-academic facilities and preservation

Public libraries: Limited, tax-driven funding can often interfere with the ability for public libraries to engage in extensive preservation activities. Materials, particularly books, are often much easier to replace than to repair when damaged or worn. Public libraries usually try to tailor their services to meet the needs and desires of their local communities, which could cause an emphasis on acquiring new materials over preserving old ones. Librarians working in public facilities frequently have to make complicated decisions about how to best serve their patrons. Commonly, public library systems work with each other and sometimes with more academic libraries through interlibrary loan programs. By sharing resources, they are able to expand upon what might be available to their own patrons and share the burdens of preservation across a greater array of systems.

Archival repositories and special collections: Archival facilities focus specifically on rare and fragile materials. With staff trained in appropriate techniques, archives are often available to many public and private library facilities as an alternative to destroying older materials. Items that are unique, such as photographs, or items that are out of print, can be preserved in archival facilities more easily than in many library settings. [cite web |url=|title=The Archival Paradigm—The Genesis and Rationales of Archival Principles and Practices|accessdate=2007-04-03 |publisher=Council on Library and Information Resources [] ]

Museums: Because so many museum holdings are unique, including print materials, art, and other objects, preservationists are often most active in this setting.

Legal issues

Reformatting, or in any other way copying an item's contents, raises obvious copyright issues. In many cases, a library is allowed to make a limited number of copies of an item for preservation purposes. In the United States, certain exceptions have been made for libraries and archives. [cite web |url=|title=U.S. Code: Title 17,108. Limitations on exclusive rights: Reproduction by libraries and archives|accessdate=2008-07-25 |publisher=Legal Information Institute [] ]


There is a longstanding tension between preservation of and access to library materials, particularly in the area of special collections. Handling materials promotes their progression to an unusable state, especially if they are handled carelessly. On the other hand, materials must be used in order to gain any benefit from them. In a collection with valuable materials, this conflict is often resolved by a number of measures which can include heightened security, requiring the use of gloves for photographs, restricting the materials researchers may bring with them into a reading room, and restricting use of materials to patrons who are not able satisfy their research needs with less valuable copies of an item. These measures can seem intimidating to less experienced researchers who might feel that these preservation measures are in place solely to keep materials out of the hands of the public.

There is also controversy surrounding preservation methods. A major controversy at the end of the twentieth century centered on the practice of discarding items that had been microfilmed. This was the subject of novelist Nicholson Baker’s book "Double Fold", which chronicled his efforts to save many old runs of American newspapers (formerly owned by the British Library) from being sold to dealers or pulped. A similar concern persists over the retention of original documents reformatted by any means, analog or digital. Concerns include scholarly needs and legal requirements for authentic or original records as well as questions about the longevity, quality and completeness of reformatted materials. [See Robert B. Townsend, cite web |url=|title=“Google Books: What’s Not to Like?”|accessdate=2008-07-27 |publisher= [ American Historical Association] ] [See also Paul Duguid, cite web |url=|title=“Inheritance and loss? A brief survey of Google Books"|accessdate=2008-07-27 |publisher= [ First Monday] ] Retention of originals as a source or fail-safe copy is now a fairly common practice. Another controversy revolving around different preservation methods is that of digitization of original material to maintain the intellectual content of the material while ignoring the physical nature of the book. [Tanselle, G.T. (1998). Texts and artifacts in the electronic era. 21stC, 3.2. [] ] Further, the Modern Language Association's Committee on the Future of the Print Record structured its "Statement on the Significance of Primary Records" on the inherent theoretical ideology that there is a need to preserve as many copies of a printed edition as is possible as texts and their textual settings are, quite simply, not separable, just as the artifactual characteristics of texts are as relevant and varied as the texts themselves (in the report mentioned herewith, G. Thomas Tanselle suggests that presently existing book stacks need not be abandoned with emerging technologies; rather they serve as vitally important original (primary) sources for future study). [cite web |url=|title=Statement on the Significance of Primary Records|accessdate=2008-07-27 |publisher= [ Modern Language Association] ]

Many digitized items, such as back issues of periodicals, are provided by publishers and databases on a subscription basis. If these companies were to cease providing access to their digital information, facilities that elected to discard paper copies of these periodicals could face significant difficulties in providing access to these items. Discussion as to the best ways to utilize digital technologies is therefore ongoing, and the practice continues to evolve.


ee also

*Archaeological site
*Architectural conservation
*Archival science
*Art conservation and restoration
*Book Preservation in Developing Countries
*Digital preservation
*Disaster Recovery Plan
*Film preservation
*Historic preservation
*Information science
*Library and Information Science
*Mass deacidification
*Mummy Paper
*New media preservation
*Wood-pulp paper

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Игры ⚽ Нужен реферат?

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Archival science — is the theory and study of the safe storage, cataloguing and retrieval of documents and items. [cite web |url= details.asp?DefinitionKey=1814|title=A Glossary of Archival and Records… …   Wikipedia

  • Portal:Library and information science — Wikipedia portals: Culture Geography Health History Mathematics Natural sciences People Philosophy Religion Society Technology The Library and Information Science Portal …   Wikipedia

  • Library and Archives Canada — building in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada. Type National Library and National Archives Established …   Wikipedia

  • Preservation survey — (also known as condition survey, conservation needs survey or preservation assessment) is the process of collecting and analyzing data about the physical condition of library materials. Preservation surveys are used by libraries to determine the… …   Wikipedia

  • Preservation — may mean:* Cultural Heritage Preservation, which includes: **Preservation (library and archival science), maintenance of artifacts and the intellectual record **Art conservation, the retention of cultural heritage for the future. **Digital… …   Wikipedia

  • Library binding — is the term used to describe the method of binding serials, and re binding paperback or hardcover books, for use within libraries. Library binding increases the durability of books, as well as making the materials easier to use. A lower cost and… …   Wikipedia

  • Preservation of magnetic audiotape — There are multiple types of magnetic media, however this article focuses on recommended best practices for handling, cleaning and storage of magnetic audiotapes in an archival repository, either in the form of open reels or enclosed cassettes.… …   Wikipedia

  • Preservation Society of Newport County — The largest of the Preservation Society s mansions, The Breakers The Preservation Society of Newport County is a private, non profit organization based in Newport, Rhode Island. It is Rhode Island s largest and most visited cultural organization …   Wikipedia

  • Media preservation — Preservation of document, pictures, recordings, digital content, etc., is a major aspect of archival science. It is also an important consideration for people who are creating time capsules, family history, historical documents, scrapbooks and… …   Wikipedia

  • Digital preservation — is the set of processes, activities and management of digital information over time to ensure its long term accessibility. The goal of digital preservation is to preserve materials resulting from digital reformatting, and particularly information …   Wikipedia

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”