What was called the “basic certification” in the pyramid of standards for certifying your digital repository, will now be called “Core Certification”. This is not the only outcome of merging the Data Seal of Approval criteria with the World Data Systems guidelines. Resulting in the new standard Core Trustworty Data Repositories Requirements.
The new standard contains the same topics like ISO 16363 (on top of the pyramid) with Organizational Infrastructure, Digital Object Management and Technology. Still there are 16 requirements to follow, although some new ones are added like “Security” and “Expert Guidance”, and others must have been removed, but this is not easy to discover. There is no document with a comparison between the old and the new. The reference to the Open Archival Information System OAIS) , prominent in the former DSA Guidelines, is now changed in a requirement for “repositories with a preservation remit” and focuses only on “archival storage”. I personally regret this limitation, as in practice every digital repository could/should use the guidance of OAIS.
Recently it was announced that a new WDS–DSA Standards and Certification Board has now been established. This Board will take responsibility for the development and maintenance of the certification criteria and processes, and for the final approval of applicants for Core Trustworthy Data Repositories certification. So now the Core Certification can start!
Dutch activities on certification
Last year I participated in a working group in the Netherlands, organized by the Network Digital Heritage and focusing on Certification. We examined the concept of this new standard extensively, as several large Dutch organizations are preparing themselves for acquiring this certificate.
Originated in the social science environment (DSA) and mixed with the WDS-ICSU scientific data goals, the Requirements are not phrased so universally that you could do without “translating” it into your own environment. This translation will help you to a better understanding in your organization by using terminology your organization is familiar with. And to gather the right documentation, because the Requirements do not give you a list of the expected documentation, but leave it to your own interpretation.
The changes in the new standard also meant that we could not look at the examples from the past. All DSA certified organizations need to publish their documentation publicly and this was used as good guidance in determining what the auditor expected you to deliver, but there were no certified repositories under the new standard. In order to support the new (Dutch and Flemish) candidates, we made a translation of the standard into Dutch.
More about the results of our activities in the Netherlands at iPRES 2017 in Kyoto!