A (born digital) health check in New Zealand

(20 March 2017) Collecting, managing, and preserving born digital collections creates new challenges and opportunities for New Zealand’s cultural heritage organisations. This work often requires learning new and different technology skills, and the use of specialised computer hardware and software.

The National Library has had a digital collecting program for over fifteen years. In 2016 it undertook an environmental scan of the current state of born digital archival and special collections material across the country.

Highlights of the survey include:

  • The vast majority of New Zealand cultural institutions hold born-digital archival material (81%) and even more (86%) expect to be collecting and managing born-digital material in the next two years. 100% of university libraries report they expect to be collecting born-digital content in the next two years.
  • Survey respondents identified lack of staff expertise as their main impediment to collecting and managing born-digital materials, and ranked building staff expertise as their highest requirement for future born-digital collecting.
  • The majority of New Zealand institutions are collecting or are responsible for born-digital archival material, but only 32% reported having a plan or strategy already in place.
  • 53% of institutions have one or fewer persons responsible for working with born-digital content.
  • 70% of respondents reported users requesting access to at least some of their born-digital collections.

Read the full survey report

The announcement in full is here.

Join the National Library in Auckland on April 27, 2017 for more on managing digital collections

Or in Dunedin on May 4, 2016