Digital Preservation is the act of preserving digital materials for long term access and use. This can involve digitized materials, such as scanned photographs and rare books, or born-digital materials, such as websites, emails, and data sets. Digital preservation is more than just storing objects, it is about ensuring proper storage and access over the long term.
Digital preservation is important because it:
For more information, watch the video created by the Library of Congress below.
Thought exercise: This video was created in 2010, and while the images of technology in the video seem outdated, it provides a good thought experiment: Think about what technology you were using at that time. Does any of it still work? Do you still have access to the files you created back then? How much data have you lost to your tech growing old?
See the Personal Preservation page for more info on how you can practice digital preservation with your own records and combat data loss.
Here are some basic digital preservation strategies that are broadly applied.
The design of this page was partly adapted from Research: By Course, Subject, or Topic, by University of Arizona Libraries, © 2020 The Arizona Board of Regents on behalf of The University of Arizona, licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.