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Subject: National Digital Library Federation

National Digital Library Federation

From: Maxine K. Sitts <mksitts>
Date: Wednesday, May 3, 1995
    **** Moderator's comments:   The mission statement and list of
    parties to the agreement are available in the CPA area of
    Conservation OnLine ( or, for the
    unwebbed, gopher://

National Digital Library Federation Agreement Signed
May 1, 1995 . Boston, MA

Leaders of fifteen of the nation's largest research libraries and
archives and the Commission on Preservation and Access today signed
an agreement that pledges collaboration toward the establishment of
a National Digital Library Federation.  At the signing held at
Harvard University, the founding members of the Federation--collectively
responsible for hundreds of millions of cultural, scholarly and
historical resources--agreed to cooperate on defining  what must be
done to bring together--from across the nation and beyond--digitized
materials that will be made accessible to students, scholars, and
citizens everywhere, and that document the building and dynamics of
United States heritage and cultures.

A primary goal of the Federation is the implementation of a
distributed, open digital library accessible across the global
Internet. The library will consist of collections--expanding over
time in number and scope--to be created from the conversion to
digital form of documents contained in founding member and other
libraries and archives, and from the incorporation of holdings
already in electronic form.

In support of that goal, the Federation will establish a
collaborative management structure, develop a coordinated funding
strategy, and formulate selection guidelines to ensure conformance
to the general theme of U.S. heritage and culture.  The Federation
also will adopt common standards and best practices to ensure full
informational capture and guarantee universal accessibility.

The agreement signed today recognizes and acknowledges the important
leadership role that the Library of Congress has played in raising
as a national issue the need for such a digital library.

The first phase of the Federation's work will be completed in six
months.  During that time, a task force coordinated by the
Commission on Preservation and Access and composed of senior members
of the staffs of the founding institutions will develop an action
plan to address, among other issues, funding strategies and the
involvement of additional institutions. The Commission will report
regularly on developments.

The primary mission of the Commission on Preservation and Access is
to foster, develop and support collaboration among libraries and
allied organizations to ensure the preservation of the published and
documentary record in all formats and to provide enduring access to
scholarly information.  It operates as a private, non-profit
corporation supported by foundation grants and the sponsorship of
colleges, universities, associations, libraries, and publishers.

Maxine K. Sitts
Program Officer
Commission on Preservation and Access
1400 16th St., NW, Suite 740
Washington, DC  20036

                  Conservation DistList Instance 8:87
                  Distributed: Wednesday, May 3, 1995
                        Message Id: cdl-8-87-001
Received on Wednesday, 3 May, 1995

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