RSS WMLG: Statistical modelling for safeguarding the nation’s digital memory

Date: Thursday 17 June 2021, 5.30PM
Location: Online
Online - joining instructions will be sent to those registered
Local Group Meeting

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Have you ever lost precious memories because of a hard drive or flash drive failure? What about that family wedding video sitting unseen on a VHS tape for which you no longer have a player? The National Archives have a responsibility to store and preserve government records and other material of national importance (for example, records of the London Olympics) for many decades. Whilst they have robust processes for paper records and for artefacts, more and more records are born digital or provided as digitised records. These are subject to all the frailties of obsolete hardware, deteriorating carriers and copying errors that we experience with our own data and records. In a joint project between the Applied Statistics & Risk Unit, Warwick and The National Archives we developed a probabilistic decision support system. Initially intended for UK use, lockdown serendipitously extended the project worldwide and allowed for the development of a professional GUI.  This tool is now being used to assess the effects of different strategies on the risk to digital collections.


Dr Martine Barons (University of Warwick)
David Underwood (The National Archives)