Research Questions and Findings of the Appraisal Task Force

Research questions:
  • What is the influence of digital technology on appraisal?
  • What is the influence of retrievability, intelligibility, functionality, and research needs on appraisal?
  • What are the influences of the medium and physical form of the record on appraisal?
  • When in the course of their existence should electronic records be appraised?
  • Should electronic records be appraised more than once in the course of their existence, and if so, when?
  • Who should be responsible for appraising electronic records?
  • What are the appraisal criteria and methods for authentic electronic records?

The major products of the work of the Appraisal Task Force were a literature review, procedures and methods in relation to the conceptual requirements for assessing authenticity developed by the Authenticity Task Force, and a model for the selection of electronic records. The major activities represented in the model are:

  1. managing the selection function,
  2. appraising electronic records,
  3. monitoring appraised electronic records, and
  4. carrying out disposition of electronic records.

In addition, main findings of the Appraisal Task Force include:

  • The assessment of authenticity of electronic records is critical to the appraisal of electronic records.
  • The determination of the feasibility of preservation is critical to the selection of electronic records.
  • It is important that electronic records be appraised early in their life cycle.
  • Monitoring the appraisal decision is a necessary activity in the process of selection of electronic records.

The Appraisal Task Force Final Report provides a detailed account of all aspects of the process of selection, with recommendations relating to the main requirements for implementation.


Public documents for the Appraisal Task Force are located here.


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