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Implementing PREMIS: a case study of the Florida Digital Archive

Devan Ray Donaldson (School of Information, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan, USA)
Paul Conway (School of Information, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan, USA)

Library Hi Tech

ISSN: 0737-8831

Article publication date: 15 June 2010




The purpose of this case study is to describe and interpret the PREservation Metadata: Implementation Strategies (PREMIS) implementation process, to gain more insight into why barriers to the adoption of PREMIS exist as well as how to overcome them.


This qualitative case study analysis highlights the Florida Digital Archive as an exemplar of an organization in the throes of deciding just how to implement the PREMIS metadata model in a working repository system.


Findings from this study suggest that use of PREMIS requires adaptation in which an organization must make changes in order to use PREMIS, and vice versa. Findings also suggest that there are clearly defined steps involved in the PREMIS implementation process, and that the nature of this process is iterative.

Research limitations/implications

This study is limited by a short data collection period. It is also limited by investigating only one institution during its implementation process. Future studies could test the validity of the model proposed in this study and include multiple institutions.

Practical implications

By providing context for the implementation process, this paper can help cultural heritage institutions interested in fully adopting PREMIS.


Exploring PREMIS implementation using DOI/MIS literature is novel in the digital preservation community and is proposed as particularly useful to digital preservationists who are considering adopting PREMIS. The paper suggests that seemingly innocuous decisions by developers have real implications for preservation.



Donaldson, D.R. and Conway, P. (2010), "Implementing PREMIS: a case study of the Florida Digital Archive", Library Hi Tech, Vol. 28 No. 2, pp. 273-289.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2010, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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