Digital curation

From an information lifecycle perspective, digital curation encompasses a number of processes geared to achieving trustworthiness of digital resources, organization, archiving and long-term preservation, and, added-value services and new uses for the resources. These processes are:

  1. Appraisal, involving the process of developing criteria and selecting resources that may become part of subsequent curation processes;
  2. Ingesting, involving the digital recording of image, sound, text and data, digitizing of analog recordings on various physical carriers, and importing digital resources from other sources, including repositories;
  3. Classification, indexing and cataloguing, producing logical indexes for information management, and, most importantly, subject indexes and indexes related to the intended or possible uses of digital resources;
  4. Knowledge enhancement, concerning the real-world entities, situations and events represented by digital resources, their wider context and domain, and digital resources themselves;
  5. Presentation, publication and dissemination, i.e., the process of generating new artefacts (scientific, scholarly, artistic, etc.) from existing primary or secondary digital resources;
  6. User experience, related to resource use and interaction between users and resources,as well the effects of this interaction;
  7. Repository management, concerning actual (centralized or distributed) or virtual repositories and including access mechanisms; and,
  8. Preservation, safeguarding against risks to longevity related either to physical causes or to technological evolution.

These processes of digital resource lifecycle management rely on three supporting processes:

  1. Goal and usage modelling, capturing, respectively, the intentions of the creators and the users of a given class of digital resources, and the patterns of use of the resources;
  2. Domain modelling, producing or refining representations of expert knowledge about a domain of interest; and,
  3. Authority management, dealing with the controlled vocabularies (e.g. geographic names, historical periods, chemical molecules, biological species, etc.) used by convention to denote concepts, properties and relations.