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Moscow Declaration on Digital Information Preservation adopted by the international conference, organized in the framework of Russian chairmanship in the UNESCO Information for All Programme

 

2011-13-10

 

Participants to the International Conference “Preservation of Digital Information in the Information Society: Problems and Prospects” unanimously adopted the Conference final document – the Moscow Declaration on Digital Information Preservation. The conference became a first-ever major international cross-subject forum dedicated to the topic – both for Russia and for UNESCO.

 

The Declaration highlights the importance and relevance of the issues raised at the conference and offers a set of measures and efforts to be taken in such spheres as politics, awareness-raising and education, scientific research, economics, ICT industry, partnership and coordination. The draft document is now being refined by a working group that united a pool of high-level experts from Argentine, Denmark, India, Italy, Russia, South Africa, etc.

 

The event took place in Moscow on 3-5 October, 2011. It gathered over 150 participants from 37 countries – heads and leading experts of major libraries, archives, museums, research and educational institutions, international organizations, governmental bodies, mass media, publishing houses, centres for scientific and technical information, ICT industries and other stakeholders involved in long-term preservation of digital information.

 

The Ministry of Culture of the Russian Federation, the Federal Agency for Press and Mass Communications, Commission of the Russian Federation for UNESCO, Russian Committee of the UNESCO Information for All Programme, Interregional Library Cooperation Centre (ILCC) and State Tretyakov Gallery were the conference organizers.

 

Greetings to the conference organizers and participants were received from Alexander Avdeev, Minister of Culture of the Russian Federation; Sergey Lavrov, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation, Chair of the Commission of the Russian Federation for UNESCO; Mikhail Seslavinsky, Head of the Federal Agency for Press and Mass Communications; Jānis Kārkliņš, UNESCO Assistant Director-General; Ingrid Parent, IFLA President.

 

The conference opening gala and the first plenary meeting at the State Tretyakov Gallery were chaired by Evgeny Kuzmin, Chair of the Intergovernmental Council and the Russian Committee of the UNESCO Information for All Programme and President of the ILCC.

 

At the conference opening the necessity of active comprehensive discussions on the issues of digital information preservation was highlighted by Vladimir Grigoriev, Deputy Head of the Federal Agency for Press and Mass Communications; Ekaterina Chukovskaya, State Secretary – Deputy Minister of Culture of the Russian Federation; Svetlana Zhurova, Deputy Chair of the Russian State Duma; Sanjaya Mishra, Programme Specialist of the UNESCO Communication and Information Sector; Grigory Ordzhonikidze, Executive Secretary of the Commission of the Russian Federation for UNESCO; and Sinikka Sipilä, IFLA President-Elect, Secretary General of the Finnish Library Association.

 

The first plenary meeting provided a review of general approaches to the problems of digital information preservation and relevant activities in that field.

 

Dietrich Schüller, Vice Chair of the Intergovernmental Council of the UNESCO Information for All Programme, made a general statement on information preservation. Peter Lor, Extraordinary Professor of the University of Pretoria spoke on ethical and political-economic issues of the long-term preservation of digital information. Alexander Visly, Director General of the Russian State Library shared his view on searching for balance between rights and aspirations in digital preservation. Oleg Naumov, Deputy Head of the Federal Archival Agency, focused on coordination problems of archives dealing with digital content. The plenary meeting concluded with a communication by Yakov Shraiberg who spoke on issues and options of digital information preservation in libraries.

 

The conference continued its work at the Atlas Park Hotel. Three plenary meetings were held:

  • Information Preservation: Digital Landscape (chaired by Evgeny Kuzmin);
  • Policies and Education for Digital Information Preservation (chaired by Peter Lor);
  • National Approaches, Solutions, Vision (chaired by Winnie Witzansky, IFLA International Library Adviser, Member of the Danish National Commission for UNESCO)

  

Fascinating reports were present and discussed within two thematic sections:

  • Digital Preservation of Text Documents (moderated by Yakov Shraiberg and Elena Kozlova, Director of the INFORMREGISTR Research and Technology Centre), and
  • Digital Preservation of Audiovisual Documents (moderated by Dietrich Schüller)

 

The communications made during the conference pointed to the need for further in-depth studies on the subject. Their results should be present on national and international level in both political and professional context. All the participants united in the certainty that conference issues were of great importance and topicality.

 

The conference showed that traditional keepers of analogue information – libraries, archives and museums – are still unable to cope with the tasks of digital information preservation. And in fact they are the ones to raise the alarm. Policy-makers do not possess due understanding of the necessity of creating a new infrastructure for the preservation of digital information, probably on the basis of the infrastructure of information preservation on traditional carriers by modernizing and strengthening it.

 

The discussions made it clear that most countries of the world possess neither regulatory framework, that would oblige relevant institutions and structures to be engaged professionally in the process of information preservation in digital format, nor drawn up distinct policies that might lead to the creation of such a framework.

 

However both developed and developing countries are trying to determine what exactly should be preserved, and for what reasons, who, where and when should do it, by which means and to what extent.

 

The participants came to a conclusion that it is necessary to take urgent measures on political and practical levels. Otherwise we may soon face the fact that:

  • Huge amounts of digitized information are lost either because the processes of its digitization were not properly provided, or it was not catalogued in time and in the right way and therefore may not be found, or it was unduly preserved.
  • Huge amounts of network and other information were not gathered and were therefore irretrievably lost, including information on history, culture and research (content of portals and websites, blogs, social networks, e-mails of eminent personalities, private and institutional digital archives, etc.).

 

For that exact reason many world experts describe the time to come as “information dark ages”, using terms like “digital Alzheimer”, “digital amnesia” and so on.

 

The conference determined not only the problems but also new professional approaches to the preservation of rapidly growing amounts of digital information. Information production is accompanied by ever growing variety of information presentation formats, types and kinds of digital objects, while constant IT changes reduce the period of those objects’ existence.

 

The conference participants repeatedly pointed out that the UNESCO Information for All Programme, regarding information preservation as one of its five key action lines, should be used as an international, cross-disciplinary and interinstitutional platform for the establishment of policy frameworks, for discussions and best practice exchange.

 

The conference became the first preparatory meeting of the UNESCO international forum on digital heritage preservation to be held in Vancouver, Canada, in September 2012.

 

 

 

 

Vladimir GRIGORIEV, Deputy Head, Federal Agency for Press and Mass Communications (Russian Federation)

 

 

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Ekaterina CHUKOVSKAYA , State Secretary-Deputy Minister, Ministry of Culture of the Russian Federation and Vladimir GRIGORIEV  

 

 

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Svetlana ZHUROVA, Deputy Chair, Russian State Duma

 

 

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Evgeny KUZMIN, Chairman, Intergovernmental Council and Russian Committee of the UNESCO Information for All Programme; President, Interregional Library Cooperation Centre

 

 

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Sanjaya MISHRA, Programme Specialist, Communication and Information Sector, UNESCO 

 

 

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Grigory ORDZHONIKIDZE, Executive Secretary, Commission of the Russian Federation for UNESCO

 

 

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Sinikka SIPILÄ, President-Elect, IFLA; Secretary General, Finnish Library Association

 

 

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Dietrich SCHÜLLER, Vice Chair, Intergovernmental Council of the UNESCO Information for All Programme; Consultant, Vienna Phonogrammarchive, Austrian Academy of Sciences  

 

 

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Sergey BAKEYKIN, Executive Director, Interregional Library Cooperation Centre, Vice-Chair, Russian Committee of the UNESCO Information for All Programme, presents the conference organisers' publications to Ekaterina CHUKOVSKAYA

 

 

Yuri PULYA, Head of Division, Federal Agency for Press and Mass Communications of the Russian Federation (left) and Alexander VOROPAYEV, Head of Department, Federal Agency for Press and Mass Communications of the Russian Federation

 

 

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From left to right: Vyacheslav BERESNEV, Executive Secretary, Boris Eltsin Presidential Library (Russian Federation); Yuri PIMOSHENKO, Director of Backup Centre, Boris Eltsin Presidential Library (Russian Federation); Boris LOGINOV, Director General, LIBNET National Information Library, member, the Russian Committee of the UNESCO Information for All Programme; Vera NIKOLAYEVA, Deputy Head of the Library and Archive Department, Ministry of Culture of the Russian Federation; Tatiana MANILOVA, Deputy Director, Department of Science, Education and Information Technologies – Head of the Library and Archive Division, Ministry of Culture of the Russian Federation, member, the Russian Committee of the UNESCO Information for All Programme 

 

 

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Peter LOR, Extraordinary Professor, University of Pretoria (South Africa)

 

 

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Alexander VISLY, Director General, Russian State Library

 

 

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Oleg NAUMOV, Deputy Head, Federal Archival Agency (Russian Federation)

 

 

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Yakov SHRAIBERG, Director General, Russian National Public Library for Science and Technology; member, Russian Committee of the UNESCO Information for All Programme

 

 

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Alfredo RONCHI, Secretary General, MEDICI Framework of Cooperation (Italy)

 

 

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Grethe JACOBSEN, Head of Department, the Royal Library (Denmark) 

 

 

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Magdy Hussein NAGI, Head of ICT Sector, Bibliotheca Alexandrina (Egypt)

 

 

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Tatiana BOGOMAZOVA, Head of the IT Department, Museum of Anthropology and Ethnography of the Russian Academy of Sciences

 

 

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Svetlana KNYAZEVA, Advisor for Communication and Information, UNESCO Moscow Office

 

 

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Andris VILKS, Director, National Library of Latvia

 

 

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Winnie VITZANSKY, International Library Adviser, IFLA; Member, Danish National Commission for UNESCO

 

 

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Susana FINQUELIEVICH, Senior Researcher, National Council for Scientific and Technical Research (Argentina)

 

 

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Barbara FORD, Director, Mortenson Center for International Library Programmes; Distinguished Professor, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (USA) 

 

 

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Natalia GENDINA, Director, Research Institute of Information Technologies in the Social Sphere, Kemerovo State University of Culture and Arts; member, Russian Committee of the UNESCO Information for All Programme 

 

 

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Sabine SCHRIMPF, Scientific Officer, Deutsche Nationalbibliothek

 

 

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Grzegorz GAUDEN, Director, Polish Book Institute

 

 

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Ramesh GAUR, Librarian&Head, Kala Nidhi Division, Indira Gandhi National Centre for the Arts (India)

 

 

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Mechthilde FUHRER, Programme Adviser, Directorate of Culture and Cultural and Natural Heritage, Council of Europe

 

 

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Leonid KUIBYSHEV, Director General, Centre on the Problems of Informatization in the Sphere of Culture (Centre PIC); Member, Russian Committee of the UNESCO Information for All Programme

 

 

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Kalju TAMMARU, Collection Management Officer, Repository Library of Estonia

 

 

Marek HOLYNSKI, President, Polish Committee of the UNESCO Information for All Programme

 

 

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Yuri ARSKY, Director, All-Russian Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of the Russian Academy of Sciences; member, Russian Committee of the UNESCO Information for All Programme (right), and Valentina TSVETKOVA, Deputy Director, All-Russian Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of the Russian Academy of Sciences

 

 

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Giovanni BERGAMIN, Head of the Information Systems, National Central Library of Florence (Italy)

 

 

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Sergey KLESHCHAR, Head of Department, Research Institute of Reprography (Russian Federation)

 

 

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Tatiana MANILOVA, Deputy Director, Department of Science, Education and Information Technologies – Head of the Library and Archive Division, Ministry of Culture of the Russian Federation; member, Russian Committee of the UNESCO Information for All Programme 

 

 

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María ALARCÓN RENDÓN, Information Technology Director, Archivo General de la Nación (Mexico)

 

 

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Members of the Russian Committee of the UNESCO Information for All Programme: Vyacheslav YUDIN, Deputy Head of Department, Federal Guard Service of the Russian Federation (left), and  Nadezhda ZAIKOVA, Vice Rector, North-Eastern Federal University;  

 

 

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Anton LIKHOMANOV, Director General, National Library of Russia

 

 

Sinikka SIPILÄ and Evgeny KUZMIN

 

 

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During the Section "Digital Preservation of Text Documents". From left to right: section co-moderator Elena KOZLOVA, Director, INFORMREGISTR Research and Technology Centre (Russian Federation); Vladimir FIRSOV, Deputy Director General for Research, Russian National Library, President, Russian Library Association; Igor LOSIEVSKY, Head of Research Department, Kharkiv State Research Library (Ukraine); Alisher ISHMATOV, Director, Information Library Centre of the Republic of Uzbekistan; Hayk Ojen KHANJYAN, President, “Bi Line” Ltd, Head of Division, Information Technologies Development Support Council of the Republic of Armenia; Viachaslau NASEVICH, Director, Belarusian Research Centre for Electronic Records; Andrzej BIERNAT, Deputy Director, Polish State Archives

 

 

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From left to right: Iulia SEMIONOVA, Vice President, Media Art Dialogue Centre, Editor-in-Chief, News Agency eNews.md (Moldova); Aleksandar SAMARDŽIĆ, Head of the Atelier for Photo Documentation, Republic Institute for Monuments Protection of Montenegro; Yishan WU, Chief Engineer, Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China

 

 

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Nadezhda BRAKKER, Chief Specialist, Centre on the Problems of Informatization in the Sphere of Culture (Russian Federation)

 

 

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During the Section "Digital Preservation of Audiovisual Documents"

 

 

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From left to right: Sergey CHERKALIN, Director, Rybinsk State Historical, Architectural and Art Reserve Museum (Russian Federation), and Lev NOL, Head of Department, Pushkin Museum of Fine Arts (Russian Federation)

 

 

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Jyldyz BAKASHOVA, Director, National Library of the Kyrgyz Republic

 

 

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Tatiana MUROVANA, Executive Secretary, Russian Committee of the UNESCO Information for All Programme, and Vladimir FIRSOV

 

 

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Members of the Russian Committee of the UNESCO Information for All Programme: Marina VEDENYAPINA, President, Pushkin Library Non-profit Foundation (left), and Alexander KUZNETSOV, Executive Director, National Electronic Information Consortium 
 

 

 

 

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Norehan JAAFFAR, Head of Digital Archives, National Archives of Malaysia

 

 

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Hildamar Coromoto FERNÁNDEZ PÉREZ, Legal Advisor, Ministry of Popular Power for Science, Technology and Intermediate Industries of Venezuela (left), and Gayane AMBARTSUMYAN, Head of the Mosfilm-Info Information Centre, Mosfilm Studio (Russian Federation)

 

 

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Nurbala TEKESBAYEVA, Head of the Digital Technologies Department, National Library of the Republic of Kazakhstan

 

 

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Abou Wally MBYE, Director General, Gambia National Library Service Authority

 

 

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Safo SAFAROV, Executive Director, Independent School of Journalism “Tajikistan – 21st Century”

 

 

 

  

The conference lobby:

 

 

 

 

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Ada KOLGANOVA, Director, Russian State Art Library (on the left), and Inna VAGANOVA, Deputy Director, Russian State Art Library

 

 

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Alexander PLEMNEK, Executive Director, Association of Regional Library Consortia (Russian Federation)

 

 

Tatiana MUROVANA and Mehdi ALIPOUR HAFEZI, Faculty Member, Iranian Research Institute for Information Science and Technology

 

 

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Elena DANYUK, Head of Department, State Russian Museum (left), and Alyona ANTIPOVA, Academic Secretary, Head of Department, State Russian Museum

 

 

Exhibition of publications by the Interregional Library Cooperation Centre and the Russian Committee of the UNESCO Information for All Programme

 

 

On the 3rd October the State Tretiakov Gallery was opened for the conference participants only

 

 

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The conference participants enjoyed the music of Chopin and Schumann performed by Irina Levina, graduate of the Music Faculty of the Moscow State Pedagigical University, laureate of all-Russian and international music competitions 

 

 

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Irina Shubina, Professor of the Music Faculty of the Moscow State Pedagigical University (right) and her student Irina Levina