The Life Cycle of Electronic Theses and Dissertations
How will institutions address the entire lifecycle of ETDs, ensuring that the electronic theses and dissertations they acquire from students today will be available to future researchers? One of the most important new responsibilities for academic libraries that has emerged in recent years is curatorial responsibility for ETDs, yet we are only slowly accumulating experience with long-term curatorial practices for this important genre of digital content. This is the context for this keynote, which uses the phrase lifecycle management of digital data in the broad sense defined by the Library of Congress to refer to the “progressive technology and workflow requirements needed to ensure long-term sustainability of and accessibility to digital objects and/or metadata”, as well as in the more detailed senses of the digital lifecycle management model as articulated by the Digital Curation Centre in the UK. A national interuniversity project in ETD lifecycle management funded by IMLS will be described.