Open Preservation Foundation Annual Report

The Open Preservation Foundation has recently published its 2014-2016 Annual Report.  Open Preservation Foundation develops, sustains and promotes open source technology and open knowledge for the long-term management of digital heritage.

“Digital Preservation is everyone’s problem … but it isn’t the same problem for everyone” (Digital Preservation Case Studies).

Much has been written and discussed about the preservation of digital information and objects. There is a plethora of projects and initiatives in this area trying to find solutions for the problem that digital information is volatile, intangible and mutable. A typical example: if a digital object comes from address not supported by persistent identifier(s), - allowing globally unique, unambiguous, and permanent identification of a digital object -  after some time there is a high probability that the system will no longer provide access to that object.

It is experienced not only in traditional memory organizations such as libraries, archival institutions, and museums, but also in broadcasting companies, institutions with audio-visual collections, business companies, research institutions with huge amounts of research data that should be citable and whose use should be measurable.

Whereas “Digital data preservation should be a key aspect of all research projects” (Digital Curation Center), community members - working to support open science and interoperability - are encouraged to use persistent identifiers to measure, evaluate, and report on the effectiveness of research infrastructure and communication whenever possible.

The Digital Curation lifecycle

Various issues connected with digital preservation

- as a key component of Digital Curation processes (see: What is Digital Curation? DCC) -

are motivating many in the community (e.g., the Digital Preservation Coalition, APARSEN, IMPACT Centre of Competence, Open Preservation FoundationEUDAT)

to continue serious conversations about improving digital preservation strategies and about creating more complete open solutions for these issues facing us now.

For example, an international not-for-profit membership organization Open Preservation Foundation: OPF (founded in 2010) sustains open technology and knowledge for the long-term management of digital heritage providing its members with reliable solutions to the challenges of digital preservation.



Access and use

Appraise and select



Preservation action



Access and reuse




We believe that openness is a fundamental pillar of digital preservation ”, - Joachim Jung, OPF Executive Director.

While providing stewardship for leading open source digital preservation tools in its software portfolio, the OPF ensures their long-term sustainability that can be funded directly from projects or through new memberships.

On June 8, 2016, the OPF released its Annual Report ­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­2014-2016, whose highlights include OPF’s software maturity models based on five complementary approaches: Quality, Visibility, Training, Open Licensing, and Community Integration.

The Technology: stewardship and sustainability’ section of the report evidences that all of OPF’s software is released under open licenses to encourage adoption, reuse, and to ensure the contribution of further enhancements back to the community.

The Knowledge’ section of the report points out that OPF facilitates open best practice knowledge exchange through its webinars, events, blogs and interest groups. In addition to software, OPF also preserves supporting material from digital preservation projects including websites, reports, documentation and training materials.

The Annual Report mentions the recent OPF participation in the SCAPE (Scalable Preservation Environments; with a number of open software and non- software outputs) and SPRUCE (outputs are available under open terms ) projects.

The veraPDF PREFORMA project has been a crucial technical success for the OPF by providing the definitive implementation of an open source PDF/A validation tool, which has been released recently in version 0.16.

Since February 2015, the Foundation has taken over stewardship of JHOVE, the open source  file format identification, validation and characterization tool for digital preservation work routine.

Another open source tool in the OPF software portfolio is FIDO (format identification for digital objects, latest version) that can be easy incorporated in different  digital preservation systems.

The OPF hosts DigiPres Commons which includes COPTR (Community Owned Tools Registry) and the Digital Preservation Q&A site.

The Foundation presents at international conferences raising awareness of the importance of digital preservation. These include: iPRES, PASIG, and Open Repositories.

In the past two years, the OPF ran an online survey to assess the current state-of-the-art in digital preservation software and practices. The Digital Preservation Community Survey – freely available to download - explores the adoption of digital preservation approaches and technology. 

Currently, the OPF has 23 members from different countries comprising archives, libraries, research and technology organizations working together to preserve our digital heritage. To become a member or read about other ways you can support the Foundation – as well as promote synergies in the development of digital practices and tools to reduce duplication of effort –  visit JOIN page.


The Annual Open Preservation Foundation Report is open to public and can be downloaded here.


Related contents:

PERICLE Digital Preservation project (2013-2017).

(In the last PERICLES FP7 newsletter  you can learn more about an open-source tool developed within the project that focuses on capturing content semantics and environment). 

Might be of your interest:

Digital Preservation and Access of Agricultural Materials (access from AGRIS)

Archiving Agricultural Information (Center of Research Libraries-Global Resources Network)

Implementing the FAO Open Archive based on Fedora Commons and FRBR (AIMS blog)

Save the date:

The 13th International Conference on Digital Preservation iPRES2016  will be held on October 3-6, 2016 in Bern, Switzerland

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