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Stepping Stones: Project Research

Statewide & Regional Stepping Stones to the National Digital Platform

Project Links

To Learn More Contact
Scott Garrison
Executive Director
Midwest Collaborative for Library Services (MCLS)

With Grand Valley State University (GVSU) Libraries as the lead institution, along with participation from the Library of Michigan; the Digital Public Library of America Service Hub at the University of Michigan; the Council of Library Directors (COLD); the Mid Michigan Digital Practitioners (MMDP); each of the major state associations for the professions of libraries (Michigan Academic Library Association), archives (Michigan Archival Association), and museums (Michigan Museums Association); and the regional Midwest Collaborative for Library Services (MCLS), the Statewide & Regional Stepping Stones to the National Digital Platform Project will have carried out the following research activities:

  • Gathered and analyzed statewide data on digital preservation readiness and organizational needs 
  • Hosted a project symposium to discuss findings and plan for project deliverables 
  • Engaged expert consultants from leading national distributed digital preservation networks;
  • Conducted national-level field research on successful state/regional networks; and
  • Carried out workshop intensives to develop the final project deliverables

Research Progress and Outputs-to-Date

The project's Statewide Survey Data and preliminary Analysis Report are made freely available and will continue to be consulted throughout the project's transition to the new Michigan Digital Preservation Network (MDPN). The original Survey Questions used in the project are also being made available as a supporting resource and can be used/adapted by other state/regional initiatives to carry out similar investigations. 

The Project Symposium held on March 4th & 5th at Grand Valley State University spotlighted the results of the first statewide survey on digital preservation, updated attendees on the ongoing field research into other successful state/regional networks at the national level, and provided an opportunity to hear from other experts in distributed digital preservation. A Symposium White Paper was produced summarizing the first conversations and recommendations for launching the new statewide/regional digital preservation network and community of practice for Michigan.

In conjunction with the 2019 Michigan Archival Association Meeting, the Stepping Stones Project also held a half-day workshop geared towards exploring viable governance models for the newly proposed Michigan Digital Preservation Network. Several institutions from each of our cultural heritage sectors met, discussed, and documented options. These are now summarized in the Community Governance White Paper