Purpose and Goals

The project has two interrelated goals necessary to move forward both the Electronic Records program in the California State Archives specifically, and research in electronic records in general. The project plans to acquire the necessary hardware and software infrastructure at the California State Archives (CSA) to preserve California's geospatial records created by the California Spatial Information Library (CaSIL), a division of the California Resources Agency. The project will test the emerging preservation infrastructure initially developed at the San Diego Supercomputer Center and further refined at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill through the NHPRC's funded Persistent Archives Testbed (PAT), and apply the results within the broader technological structure of the state of California. This preservation infrastructure is based on "data grid" and "persistent archives" technology. Initially, the project will deploy technology at three sites (CaSIL, CSA, and UNC/RENCI). Because of this project, the California State Archives will have the appropriate infrastructure for the management of electronic records transferred from a state agency to ensure their archival preservation.

Simultaneously, State Archives will appraise and accession the archival geospatial records held by CaSIL into CSA. This accessioning will constitute the first structured receipt of electronic records by CSA. To do this, the project staff will incorporate the existing methods of electronic records appraisal developed by the National Archives and other geospatial projects to appraise California's geospatial data. In addition, because of the many formats for the records stored by CaSIL, we plan to experiment with data conversion and migration to ensure that we understand how to preserve the integrity of these records. Based on these experiments and on the results of studies from other archives and institutes, we will adopt a set of guidelines for geospatial records to be preserved by CSA and develop a set of transmission requirements for geospatial records. With an appraisal completed and these standards in place, the project staff will transmit selected archival record series from CaSIL to CSA's implemented technological infrastructure. The large size of, complexity of, and different uses for these geospatial records will permit us to test the effectiveness of this infrastructure. With the help of a project advisory board that brings knowledge of geospatial use and creation for the state of California and best practices for archival preservation of electronic records, the result will be a robust infrastructure for the electronic records program at the California State Archives and the preservation of important geospatial records.

Partners involved include:
  • State Archives: California
  • GIS Agency: CaSIL
  • Cyberinfrastructure Partners: RENCI, SILS/UNC