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NISO Announces Community Version of Framework for Good Digital Collections

Baltimore, MD - November 11, 2008 - NISO announces release of the online community version of the Framework of Guidance for Building Good Digital Collections, which establishes principles for creating, managing, and preserving digital collections, digital objects, metadata, and projects. The Framework will be useful to libraries and other cultural heritage organizations planning projects to create digital collections, and funding organizations that want to encourage development of good digital collections. The community version of the Framework was developed to allow for ongoing contributions, comments, and updates from librarians, archivists, curators, and other information professionals. The Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) supported development of the Framework, which is available on the NISO website at
IMLS, which developed the first version of the Framework in 2000, transferred maintenance of the guidelines to NISO in September 2003. A NISO advisory group issued the second edition in 2004 and the NISO Framework Working Group was formed in 2006 to create the third edition and to oversee the community version. The current (3rd) edition was issued in print (PDF) early in 2008 and is now available in the updatable community version. This edition not only includes new resources and examples, but the revision was undertaken with the particular awareness of the increased inclusion of digital-born objects in collections and the vital role that digital collection development plays in libraries and cultural heritage organizations.

According to Priscilla Caplan, Assistant Director of Digital Library Services at the Florida Center for Library Automation and chair of the Working Group, "The third edition was greatly expanded and improved. The Framework Working Group did a fabulous job, and now we're excited to let our colleagues enhance the content with their own knowledge and experience."

Resources cited in the Framework were selected to be authoritative, useful, and current. However, because of the dynamic nature of the digital information environment, the list of important resources is always changing.

"By incorporating community feedback into the standards, the Framework becomes a living document that grows and learns from the community most engaged in digital collections. This is increasingly important as cultural institutions digitize collections to preserve them for future generations," said IMLS Director Anne-Imelda Radice.

Todd Carpenter, NISO Managing Director, noted, "We encourage practitioners to share ideas and experiences, suggest resources, and evaluate those that have been suggested." Information on how to contribute can be found on the Framework website.

The Working Group for the Framework included Priscilla Caplan, Florida Center for Library Automation (chair); Grace Agnew, Rutgers University; Murtha Baca, Getty Research Institute; Tony Gill, Center for Jewish History; Carl Fleischhauer, Library of Congress; Ingrid Hsieh-Yee, Catholic University of America; Jill Koelling, Northern Arizona University; and Christie Stephenson, American Museum.

About NISO
NISO fosters the development and maintenance of standards that facilitate the creation, persistent management, and effective interchange of information so that it can be trusted for use in research and learning. To fulfill this mission, NISO engages libraries, publishers, information aggregators, and other organizations that support learning, research, and scholarship through the creation, organization, management, and curation of knowledge. NISO works with intersecting communities of interest and across the entire lifecycle of an information standard. NISO is a not-for-profit association accredited by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI). More information about NISO is available on its website:

About the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS)
The Institute of Museum and Library Services is the primary source of federal support for the nation's 122,000 libraries and 17,500 museums. The Institute's mission is to create strong libraries and museums that connect people to information and ideas. The Institute works at the national level and in coordination with state and local organizations to sustain heritage, culture, and knowledge; enhance learning and innovation; and support professional development. To learn more about the Institute, please visit