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Subject: Examples of risks to objects and data sought

Examples of risks to objects and data sought

From: Robert Waller <rwaller<-a>
Date: Monday, August 8, 2005
    **** Moderator's comments: Please respond directly to the

The Canadian Conservation Institute is planning a publication on
preservation of museum collections. A section of this publication
describes the agents of deterioration that cause damage and losses
to cultural property. We are writing to you now to ask for your help
in identifying as fully as possible, the diversity of specific
problems that fall within an agent that has variously been termed
"custodial neglect", "loss", or "dissociation".  This agent gathers
together all ways that data are dissociated from objects and
collections and that objects are dissociated from collections and
institutions that are not the result of criminal activity (dealt
with elsewhere).

The following are examples of issues that would fit into this

    *   Misfiling of objects with consequent inability to relocate
    *   Objects confiscated due to lack of permits for
    *   Objects lost due to failure to assure legal title transfer
    *   Value of sacred objects diminished by contact with
        non-sanctioned persons
    *   Linkage of object to provenance data lost
    *   Mixing of samples from separate sample lots
    *   Dissociation of unique data on labels from objects
    *   Failure to migrate digital information to current hardware
        and software systems

We would very much like to add your ideas to this list to help us
ensure we are being comprehensive in defining the issues. Do you
have anything to add to this list? Can you help in better defining
the terms we have used? Is there a more general or clearer structure
for this kind of activity? Do you have concrete examples of any of
these issues you can share?  Do you have particular insights into
mitigating the risk of dissociation you would share with us?

Please respond to rwaller<-a t->mus-nature< . >ca rwaller<-a t->mus-nature< . >ca> and
pcato<-a t->sdnhm< . >og pcato<-a t->sdnhm< . >og>.

Robert Waller and Paisley Cato

Robert Waller, Ph.D.
Chief, Conservation
Canadian Museum of Nature
PO Box 3443, Stn D
Ottawa ON K1P 1P4
Fax: 613-364-4027

                  Conservation DistList Instance 19:10
                Distributed: Wednesday, August 17, 2005
                       Message Id: cdl-19-10-040
Received on Monday, 8 August, 2005

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