(Archaeology Data Service, York,UK)

Keywords: data management, curation

The paper will present practical experiences and insight from the Archaeology Data Service (ADS), an accredited digital archive for UK-based archaeological fieldwork and research, in regard to the wider contexts of the large volumes of data being produced by emerging digital technologies. The paper will draw on 20 years of archiving large and complex data, often from the cutting-edge of the digital techniques employed by research, to offer insight on trends in digital deposition and the problems this presents the digital archive. These problems include the scale of data (i.e. storage) as well as the need to consider suitable long-term formats and the requisite metadata required for re-use and understanding. The paper will also offer a perspective on the difficulties of being a successful archive in this context, particularly in a commercial (i.e. development-led) framework. It will discuss the constant need to balance the technical requirements of the archive (file formats, metadata) with the practicalities of a depositor that are often limited by time and financial pressures. The paper will also look to examine and explore the often differing perceptions on the nature of, and what constitutes archives and data, particularly as both the archive and depositor look to enhance usability (i.e. potential re-use) and impact.

Relevance for the conference: The paper will provide a case study on the issues surrounding the archiving of cultural heritage data
Relevance for the session: The paper will provide insight on how ADS are tackling large and complex datasets
Innovation: The paper will examine how digital archives are addressing trends in preserving datasets from new technologies, principally 3D
• Richards, JD 2017, ‘Twenty Years Preserving Data: A View From the UK’ Advances in Archaeological Practice, pp. 227-237. DOI: 10.1017/aap.2017.11
• Meghini, C, Scopigno, R, Richards, JD, Wright, HE, Geser, G, Cuy, S, Fihn, J, Fanini, B, Hollander, H, Niccolucci, F, Felicetti, A, Ronzino, P, Nurra, F, Papatheodoridou, C, Gavrilis, D, Theodoridou, M, Doerr, M, Tudhope, D, Binding, C & Vlachidis, A 2017, ‘ARIADNE: A Research Infrastructure for Archaeology’ ACM Journal on Computing and Cultural Heritage, vol 10, no. 3. DOI: 10.1145/3064527