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Friday, October 14, 2011

TRAC: A1.1: Mission statement

A1.1 Repository has a mission statement that reflects a commitment to the long-term retention of, management of, and access to digital information.

The mission statement of the repository must be clearly identified and accessible to depositors and other stakeholders and contain an explicit long-term commitment.

Evidence: Mission statement for the repository; mission statement for the organizational context in which the repository sits; legal or legislative mandate; regulatory requirements.

Here is our mission statement: 

ICPSR provides leadership and training in data access, curation, and methods of analysis for a diverse and expanding social science research community.

The important word in the context of TRAC requirement A1.1 is curation.  My recollection is that as we were crafting the mission statement, it originally contained many, many more words, and one of the most time-consuming tasks was for the group to pare it down.  I think the term curation was meant to imply not passive storage of content, but active management of our content, beginning with its receipt in the deposit system, and then onward.

Along with a mission statement we also have a strategic plan (which is getting a little long in the tooth now that it is 2011), and the commitment to long-term retention and management of digital information also appears in several places therein.

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