Current work in digital preservation (DP) is dominated by the “Open Archival Information System” (OAIS) reference framework specified by the international standard ISO 14721:2003. This is a useful aid to understanding the concepts, main functional components and the basic data flows within a DP system, but does not give specific guidance on implementation-level issues. In this paper we suggest that there is a need for a reference architecture which goes beyond OAIS to address such implementationlevel issues - to specify minimum requirements in respect of the policies, processes, and metadata required to measure and validate repository trustworthiness in respect of the authenticity, integrity, renderability, meaning, and retrievability of the digital materials preserved. The suggestion is not that a particular way of implementing OAIS be specified, but, rather that general guidelines on implementation are required if the term “OAIS-compliant” is to be meaningful in the sense of giving an assurance of attaining and maintaining an operationally adequate or better level of long-term reliability, consistency, and crosscompatibility in implemented DP systems that is measurable, verifiable, manageable, and (as far as possible) futureproofed.
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