The Expert Group on Appraisal was set up in 2015 to represent archival interests on the Content Taskforce of the UNESCO/PERSIST (Platform to Enhance the Sustainability of the Information Society Transglobally) project.
The Content Taskforce is made up of two archivists - ICA representatives Rob Fisher and Sarah Choy - three librarians, and one museum curator, and is chaired by Ingrid Parent, on behalf of IFLA (International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions).
The Content Taskforce is drafting the Guidelines for the selection of digital content for long-term preservation by heritage institutions. The Guidelines are designed primarily for libraries, archives and museums, including professionals and administrators who deal with digital materials and plan to prepare a policy on selection of digital materials for long-term preservation.
The work of the Content Taskforce has highlighted the challenges of choosing digital heritage for long-term preservation across the museum, library and archival professions.
The ICA Expert Working Group on Appraisal has represented the archival importance of provenance, authenticity, and significance in choosing digital materials for long-term preservation, as well as access issues arising from the legal environment - such as the sensitivity of personal information and confidentiality of government records.
The first draft was presented to members of IFLA in its International Congress in Cape Town in late August 2015, and a revised draft was presented to members of the ICA at its Annual Conference at Reykjavik in September 2015. After further revisions, a new version of the Guidelines was presented to the UNESCO General Assembly in November.
The Content Taskforce will be soliciting further expert comment on the Guidelines in the next few months with the expectation of preparing a final draft in the second quarter of 2016.