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Deutsche National Bibliothek
Keep Solutions
National Library Estonia
The Royal Library
Statens Arkiver
UK Data Archive
University of Glasgow

Three milestones met for the 4C Project’s Curation Costs Exchange

The 4C Project has reported to the European Commission that it has met three of its milestones this week. The milestones underpin the development of the project’s Curation Costs Exchange (CCEx) which is deliverable by October this year, and are: MS16 - CCEx Pilot, MS17 - Draft Submission Template and MS18 - Draft Specification.

A central resource for the project, the CCEx will provide a means through which interested parties can access all other project deliverables, as well as information on the costs of curation, in exchange for a little information about their own digital curation activities.

“There is still a way to go in developing the CCEx, but with input from our stakeholders we have made considerable progress in achieving these milestones and they will lay the ground work for the phased pilot which will take place over the next 9 months,” explains Heiko Tjalsma of DANS who is jointly leading the CCEx Design Group alongside the DPC.

The Curation Costs Exchange Platform Pilot (MS16) will serve as a demonstration of how the submission and output processes combine in an exchange function, and will be used for further phased stakeholder requirements gathering and development until the full launch in October 2014 at the 4C Conference.

The CCEx will be an online community platform for the exchange of curation cost information which aims to gather and output cost information from partner organisations and stakeholders, submitted to the exchange using a Submission Form/Template (MS17).

The Draft Specification (MS18) draws together an initial set of requirements based on stakeholder consultations to date, and the use cases arising from these conversations. The specification will evolve throughout the remainder of the project, particularly during the CCEx pilot where additional requirements gathering will be undertaken.

The vision of the project team, made up of 13 European organisations with extensive experience with curation cost modelling issues and coordinated by Jisc, is to create a better understanding of digital curation costs through collaboration through the provision of useful, useable resources which support the process of cost management in digital curation, and the CCEx is just one of these.

One of the objectives of the CCEx is to enable comparison of stakeholders’ cost data across organisations and borders. Through its initial consultation the project has found that the main driver for using cost models is to reduce costs by enhancing efficiency. If the CCEx is able to offer this display of cost data, users will be able to start comparing costs straight away.

“We know that sharing cost data is a sensitive issue,” says Sarah Norris of the DPC, joint task leader for the development of the CCEx. “We can assure all contributors that all cost data shared with the 4C project will be treated confidentially and will be used solely for the purposes of building up data sets for the CCEx. Even as outputs for the CCEx, data will remain anonymous.”

As an ‘open and social’ project, 4C relies on input from stakeholders and practitioners to make sure the best resources are developed for the digital preservation community. The team are also looking for individuals to attend focus groups and take part in the CCEx pilot this year, in order to share thoughts and feedback on the resource.

To share cost data, experiences, or get involved with the CCEx pilot or any aspect of the project, contacts may be found on the project website: