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Preserving collections and samples in the era of Big Data

last modified Feb 23, 2016 02:33 PM
Jenny Bunn, University College London

In speaking of a ‘common assumption that only a small portion of that whole can be preserved’ it is also necessary to uncover our assumptions about the relationship between wholes and parts of wholes. Archivists have long sought to preserve wholes that are ‘greater than the sum of their parts’, but they have not always been clear about what that means. Melding archival theory with concepts from Cybernetics, I will outline how the whole we strive to keep is not synonymous with keeping everything, but with managing and using data in a certain way.