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An ICA standard. ISAD(G) (General International Standard Archival Description) defines the elements that should be included in an archival finding aid. There are 26 elements, of which 6 are mandatory: Reference code, Title, Name of Creator, Dates of Creation, Extent of the Unit of Description, Level of description

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The International Standard Archival Authority Record for Corporate Bodies, Persons and Families ISAAR(CPF). A content model and a companion standard to General International Standard Archival Description (ISAD(G)). ISAAR(CPF) provides guidelines for recording authority data for entities associated with archival materials. The model defines 27 elements in four areas of an authority record (Identity, Description, Relationships, and Control).

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International Standard for Describing Functions (ISDF). Provides guidance for preparing descriptions of functions of corporate bodies associated with the creation and maintenance of archives. Function definition includes subfunction, business process, activity, task, transaction or other term in international, national or local usage. The standard states that analysis of the functions of corporate bodies is important as the basis for many record keeping activities. Functions are recognised as generally being more stable than administrative structures. Description of functions plays a vital role in explaining the provenance of records.

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International Standard for Describing Institutions with Archival Holdings (ISDIAH). Provides general rules for the standardisation of descriptions of institutions with archival holdings to enable:

  • the provision of practical guidance on identifying and contacting institutions with archival holdings, and accessing holdings and available services
  • the generation of directories of institutions with archival holdings and/or authority lists
  • the establishment of connections with authority lists of libraries and museums and/or developing common directories of cultural heritage institutions at a regional, national and international level
  • and the production of statistics on institutions with archival holdings, at a regional, national or international level.

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Records in Context Content Model (RiC-CM) is a proposed standard from the International Council of Archives. It is a descriptive standards that incorporates the four existing ICA description standards, ISAD(G), ISAAR(CPF), ISDF, and ISDIAH. The standard recognises changing technologies and embraces graph technologies for description. The standard emphasises the preservation of the context in which records live. Overall, the standard exists to support the management of records; preservation of records and their context; and the reuse of records.

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Open Provenance Model

The Open Provenance Model is a model of provenance that is designed to meet the requirements:

  1. To allow provenance information to be exchanged between systems, by means of a compatibility layer based on a shared provenance model.
  2. To allow developers to build and share tools that operate on such a provenance model.
  3. To define provenance in a precise, technology-agnostic manner.
  4. To support a digital representation of provenance for any 'thing', whether produced by computer systems or not.
  5. To allow multiple levels of description to coexist.
  6. To define a core set of rules that identify the valid inferences that can be made on provenance representation.

What is...


  • Preservation Metadata: Implementation Strategies (Working Group), initially developed the PREMIS data dictionary as a specification with the goal of creating an implementable set of "core" preservation metadata elements, with broad applicability within the digital preservation community.
  • The PREMIS Editorial Committee coordinates revisions and implementation of the standard.
  • PREMIS is system and encoding, agnostic. It defines "what a preservation repository needs to know". As such the repository that implements PREMIS may find itself doing so in any way that is fit for that institution.


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Dublin Core

  • The Dublin Core Metadata Element Set is a vocabulary of fifteen properties for use in resource description.
  • The name "Dublin" is due to its origin at a 1995 invitational workshop in Dublin, Ohio; "core" because its elements are broad and generic, usable for describing a wide range of resources.
  • The fifteen element "Dublin Core" described in this standard is part of a larger set of metadata vocabularies and technical specifications maintained by the Dublin Core Metadata Initiative (DCMI).
  • The full set of vocabularies, DCMI Metadata Terms [DCMI-TERMS], also includes sets of resource classes (including the DCMI Type Vocabulary [DCMI-TYPE]), vocabulary encoding schemes, and syntax encoding schemes.
  • The terms in DCMI vocabularies are intended to be used in combination with terms from other, compatible vocabularies in the context of application profiles and on the basis of the DCMI Abstract Model [DCAM].

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ISO 15489-1:2016

Information and documentation -- Records management – Part 1: Concepts and Principles. ISO 15489 is the first standard devoted specifically to records management; providing an outline for comprehensive assessment of full and partial records management programs.

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ISO 15489-2:2016

Information and documentation -- Records management – Part 2: Guidelines. ISO 15489 is the first standard devoted specifically to records management; providing an outline for comprehensive assessment of full and partial records management programs.

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ISO 14721:2012

Space data and information transfer systems -- Open archival information system (OAIS) -- Reference model - a reference model for what is required for an archive to provide long-term preservation of digital information)

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ISO 16363:2013

Audit and certification of trustworthy digital repositories – sets out comprehensive metrics for what an archive must do, based on OAIS

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ISO 16919:2014

Requirements for bodies providing audit and certification of candidate trustworthy digital repositories – specifies the competencies and requirements on auditing bodies

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DIN 31644

EN: Information and documentation - Criteria for trustworthy digital archives
DE: Information und Dokumentation - Kriterien für vertrauenswürdige digitale Langzeitarchive

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Resource Description Framework (RDF) is a family of World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) specifications originally designed as a metadata data model. It is also used as a general method for conceptual description or modelling of information that is implemented in web resources. It is used in knowledge management applications.