Sharing the data

Benjamin Ducke
Wed Jun 21 10:49:35 CEST 2006


the issue you are raising is, of course, of greatest importance
for anyone trying to assure the long-term availability of
cultural and/or scientific data, not just archaeologists.

The Archaeology Data Service has specialized on this sort
of thing in archaeology ( and so has
Oxford ArchDigital (

However, it's hard to believe that you can trust a private or
semi-private company for really, really long-term data storage.

Most national governments in Europe should have a public scheme for
achieving this. In Germany, the National Library is running
a secure digital archive where you can store all kinds of
digital publications, including your data. You get a unique
digital book number for your contribution and anyone interested
in it can locate your article and data via that number.
I am sure that there must be something like that in Italy, too.

If you don't want to trust your department for long-term storage,
try arranging something with your university's central IT.
In my case, it was not a problem to get them to install a content
management system on one of their web servers. They have systems that
are far more reliable, redundant and secure than anything an
individual department could come up with. Also, they care about
data archiving and migration to new hardware. That's a big load
of your shoulders!
Individual universities also circulate archive tapes among each
other, so even if your uni burns down completely, there will
be a copy of your data somewhere.

Whatever the solution: we cannot provide long-term storage ourselves
and I think the best thing to do is to leave it up to the professionals
in state-run storage centers.



Giancarlo Macchi wrote:
> Dear Friends,
> I just want to ask you some thing related with the topic of data sharing.
> In this moment I'm finishing an Landscape Archaeology article
> where I made some assumptions on the basis of point distribution
> maps. As Roberto correctly stated in one of his previous posts
> the data "should be available" to the reader in order to validate
> or refute my assumptions.
> So the question is very simple: is there a secure place to
> publish such files. I mean, even if my lab today run a web server
> and other services, I don't know if 20 years from now there will
> be an archaeology department, I will be still an archaeologist,
> the University of Siena will be interested on keeping my old
> files in some server etc etc etc.
> Do you know about the existence of institutions and repositories
> for such purposes?
> Thank you in advance,
>  Giancarlo

Benjamin Ducke, M.A.
(Archaeoinformation Science)
Institut für Ur- und Frühgeschichte
(Inst. of Prehistoric and Historic Archaeology)
Christian-Albrechts-Universität zu Kiel
Johanna-Mestorf-Straße 2-6
D 24098 Kiel

Tel.: ++49 (0)431 880-3378 / -3379
Fax : ++49 (0)431 880-7300

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