December 21, 2014



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Digital Archiving and the National Archives and Records Administration


 Building an Electronic Records Archive at NARA: Recommendations for Initial Development This, the first of two reports from this project, recommends a strategy for engineering and acquiring NARA's Electronic Records Archives (ERA). The second and final report from the Committee is anticipated in early 2004.
 Building an Electronic Records Archive: Letter Report elaborates on issues discussed in the committee's first report, Building an Electronic Records Archive at the National Archives and Records Administration: Recommendations for Initial Development, tying the issues specifically to the NARA's draft request for proposals for its Electronic Records Archives program.
 Building an Electronic Records Archive at NARA: Recommendations for a Long-Term Strategy The final report from this project examines long-term issues related to electronic records archiving at the National Archives and Records Administration, including coping with technological change, reengineering archival processes for electronic records, partnering with other institutions, broadening research interactions, and assuring record integrity and authenticity.

Project Scope

CSTB will address the digital archiving needs of the National Archives and Records Administration by examining a proposed approach that the agency is considering implementing. CSTB's expert committee will undertake an assessment of technologies for long-term digital archiving and preservation, developing a picture of what is currently available commercially and what should be in the near term, as well as the feasibility of commercializing new ideas from research. It will draw on that assessment to develop an independent, technical review of the viability of the architecture and approach for persistent archiving proposed to the National Archives and Records Administration by a research team from the San Diego Supercomputer Center. It will consider the effectiveness (e.g., scalability, reliability, cost) of the proposed solution and which piece or pieces of the archiving problem would be solved for the National Archives and Records Administration through this approach.

The committee will also consider alternative proposals and key issues in meeting the digital archiving challenge of the agency, in order to provide perspective on the San Diego Supercomputer Center proposal and respond to the fundamental concerns of the National Archives and Records Administration. An intensive review will culminate in a brief report that will be presented to the National Archives and Records Administration. A final report will provide a more comprehensive discussion of the digital archiving and preservation issues and options confronting the National Archives and Records Administration.

Committee Members

Robert F. Sproull, Chair
Vice President and Fellow
Sun Microsystems

Howard Besser
Associate Professor
School of Education and Information Studies

Jamie Callan
Associate Professor
Carnegie Mellon University

Charles Dollar
Dollar Consulting

Stuart Haber
Hewlett Packard Laboratories

Margaret Hedstrom
Associate Professor
School of Information
University of Michigan


Jon Eisenberg, Senior Program Officer and Study Director
Jennifer M. Bishop, Program Associate
Charles N. Brownstein, Executive Director


National Archives and Records Administration


Mark Kornbluh
Associate Professor
Michigan State University

Raymond Lorie
Research Staff Member
IBM Almaden Research Center

Clifford Lynch
Coalition for Networked Information (CNI)

Jerome H. Saltzer
Professor of Computer Science, Emeritus
Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Margo Seltzer
Gordon McKay Professor and Associate Dean of Computer Science and Engineering
Harvard University

Robert Wilensky
School of Information Management and Systems
University of California, Berkeley



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