ARK (Archival Record Key) identifiers are widely used for objects and abstractions related to scientific and scholarly heritage. ARKs were developed at the California Digital Library (CDL) especially, but not exclusively, for the library, archive and museum community. Their built-in flexibility and ease-of-use has proven popular with researchers and scholars across all academic disciplines, as well as government, commercial and nonprofit sectors. Indeed, over 550 institutions across the world have registered to use ARKs, conservatively estimated to number 175 million.
We (CDL) are launching this pilot project as a first step toward ensuring the ongoing health and development of the ARK infrastructure. By “ARK infrastructure,” we mean open source software tools and systems, the ARK specification, and production-grade resolver services. Community ownership of ARK identifier assets has been under discussion for over a decade, and the project makes a start by establishing an active ARK community group with the aims of
Maintaining two key assets: the ARK specification and the NAAN registry, and
Submitting the current ARK specification to the IETF as in Internet Informational RFC.
CDL plans to be a core member of the ARK community and invites anyone with an interest in promoting long-term access to information objects to join us.
How to Get Involved
Talk with us (and each other): https://groups.google.com/forum/#!forum/arks-forum
Express your interest in this project: http://bit.ly/2C4fU8f
Give us feedback on our Project Vision: https://wiki.duraspace.org/display/DSP/Project+Vision
Learn more about ARKs: http://n2t.net/e/ark_ids.html
Short term - what we're working on now
Developing the pitch
Assembling and convening an ARK advisory group to
Review the pitch, revise after feedback
Develop procedures for shared maintenance of the organizational registry
Assembling a sub-group of the advisory group (or different team) to work on the ARK IETF specification
Longer term - working on these soon!
Defining a governance model
Defining a financial model
Guiding the ARK specification through the IETF Informational RFC process
Consult with the ARK specification team
Developing a process to gather requirements, priorities and models for shared community and infrastructure management
Consult with the wider ARK community
Launching an initiative to measure ARK usage world-wide
- Consider how to use this as a community outreach mechanism
- Make the survey/measurement repeatable so that watching long-term trends is possible
- Prepare a proposal for the Advisory Group
- Develop a dissemination plan
Aspirational items - we imagine ourselves working on these!
We envision an active and involved global community that sustains ARK identifiers as part of the open scholarly and research infrastructure.
Automating regular processes, including assignment of organizational NAANs
Creating an active open source project around the N2T resolver code base
Creating and maintaining an open source library of ARK integrations with external systems