onsdag den 17. februar 2010

Preserving the 'Papers' of 21st Century Science

Our next seminar will address no less than the seminal question of how to document the present in the future. How, in the digital era, will we be able to preserve the raw material necessary for continuing to write history? An answer to this question, which is particularly urgent in the history of science, will require a close collaboration among a broad spectrum of people, including the creators (scientists), the future keepers (archivists), and the users (primarily historians) of the digital material, as well as computer scientists. I look forward to a fruitful and lively exchange of views after the talk, with representatives from all of these groups. I wish you all welcome.

Best wishes,
Finn Aaserud
The Niels Bohr Archive
History of Science Seminar
Thu 4 March 2010, 14.15
Aud. A, Niels Bohr Institute
Blegdamsvej 17, Copenhagen

Christopher Prom, Ph.D
Fulbright Distinguished Scholar
Centre for Archive and Information Studies
University of Dundee
Preserving the 'Papers' of 21st Century Science

We cannot understand the full impact of scientific work without access to the correspondence, notes, and other materials that scientists generate on a daily basis. But how, in the digital era, can we best preserve the 'papers' generated by scientists? Such records are stored as mere electronic impulses, distributed across many locations, and written in formats that cannot be rendered without machines and software. As a result, rich historical sources, such as correspondence in email format, are at risk. Recent events in East Anglia demonstrate that such records are susceptible to hacking and misrepresentation in the short term. In the long term, they may be even more susceptible to loss through corruption or neglect.

In a provocative and wide-ranging talk, Christopher Prom will review the current state of work in preserving digital records. He will provide some suggestions regarding methods and tools that archives, government, scientific or historic institutes, and other partners can use to help ensure that an adequate and usable record of 21st century scientific thought is accessible well into the future
Finn Aaserud, Director
Niels Bohr Archive, Home page: www.nba.nbi.dk

[tilføjet efter arrangementet: der er et referat af foredraget her]