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National Digital Information Infrastructure and Preservation ProgramLibrary of Congress
About the Program
Strategic Planning
  Convening Sessions 
  Scenario Planning 
Reports and Papers Program Announcement News & Events

Digital Sunrise Picture
Strategic Planning
Convening Sessions

During the summer and fall of 2001, the Library of Congress embarked on a program of listening and learning. An important component of this process were three convening sessions, held in November of that year. These sessions were supported by a series of interviews with a broad range of experts and six environmental scans. The report on the sessions, background information on the interviews and the scans themselves are available in the Background and Planning Documents section of this Web site.

One hundred forty individuals representing a range of stakeholder communities, primarily among content creators, distributors and users, were invited to participate in one of three 1-1/2 day sessions in Washington in November 2001. About 70 people attended one of the three sessions for all or part of the program. They represented media and entertainment (film, television, music); scholarly, textbook, commercial and newspaper publishing; research libraries; heritage preservation organizations; universities; private foundations and independent authors and artists as well as representatives of other interested federal agencies. Many attendees had experience across multiple functions and industries, enriching the conversations through their diverse personal experiences and informed perspectives. Dinner on the first night was followed by an all-day session, moderated by Peter Schwartz of the Global Business Network, who was assisted by Richard P. O'Neill.

Participants voiced consensus behind the initiative, willingness to seek collaborative solutions and a sense of urgency. There was also consensus behind some form of distributed or decentralized solution, involving multiple entities and possibly affording varying degrees of access according to groups of users. Frustrations were shared over the multiplicity of formats, rapid technological changes, hardware and software obsolescence, both too many and too few technical standards, the formal and informal standards-setting processes and problems associated with playback (which are particularly acute for film, television and sound as well as early computer files). Representatives of film, television and music industries agreed that there are substantial technical differences among the formats, despite commonalities, and there is a question as to whether it is better to subdivide and focus on the issues that arise within formats or to start by trying to solve the commonalities. From the perspective of the library community, one senior university official noted, the challenge is going from a model based on loaning information that the institution owns to a model based on providing access to information that the institution does not own.

The topics covered in the convening sessions include:
  • Archiving: Whose responsibility?
  • Protecting intellectual rights and other sources of tension
  • Who should pay?
  • Technology
  • Preservation and access
  • Priorities and next steps
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NDIIPP Makes Awards of $15 Million to 8 Institutions Press release

The National Strategy Advisory Board convened on June 28, 2004, in Washington, D.C. Presentations in Powerpoint, as well as a Webcast, are now available.

Digital Preservation Program Launches Research Grants Initiative
Library of Congress Partners with National Science Foundation. Click here to read more.

Library of Congress Announces Joint Digital Preservation Project With Four Universities
Library to Work with Old Dominion, Johns Hopkins, Stanford and Harvard Universities. Click here to read more.

New Section in Digital Preservation Web Site
There's a new section on this Web site, called News & Events. Here you will find a newsletter, a list of relevant links and a calendar of events for upcoming conferences, meetings, workshops and symposia related to digital libraries.

Many documents on this site are prepared in Adobe Acrobat format (PDF). A free reader can be downloaded from the Adobe site for viewing.