The Digital Curation Institute (DCI) is an interdisciplinary unit at the Faculty of Information. It is based on a broad and inclusive perspective on the subject. The “active involvement in the management of digital information for future use” is not simply a task that data centers, libraries and archives and museums are solely responsible for, a task that can be assumed to be completed by distant service providers. It is a concern of central relevance to a multitude of stakeholders and can be found in a myriad of scenarios and systems, many of which are embedded into the fabric of organizations, communities and society as a whole. As such, digital curation becomes a design question, a decision problem, a policy issue, and a concern at the intersection of an array of connected disciplines. Information professionals, researchers, and organizations have a unique opportunity to play crucial, central roles in this complex ecosystem.
The DCI strives to be a focal point for digital curation and a world-class center of expertise in digital curation showing international leadership in interdisciplinary digital curation research, innovation, education, and advice. We focus on innovative research as the centerpiece of the Institute’s value proposition, expanding the frontiers of what we know about digital curation, identifying new areas of relevance, and challenging established conventions. In doing so, the DCI will “facilitate intra- and inter-divisional collaboration within U of T and across institutions, Canada-wide and internationally”, to borrow a phrase from the University’s Strategic Research Plan.
The Digital Curation Institute (DCI) provides a rich, interdisciplinary environment for investigating principles and theory building related to the creation, management, use, interpretation and preservation of digital resources; conducting research on digital curation issues; and developing technologies and tools to support best practice in this area. The DCI promotes innovative multifaceted research projects that involve collaboration among faculty, students, practitioners, and researchers both national, and international. It encourages research that utilize multi-methods approaches from the fields of critical information studies; library and information science; archives and record management; information systems, media, and design; cultural heritage; museum studies, knowledge management and information management.
The DCI was established in 2010 at the Faculty of Information. The newly established DCI organized an inaugural conference “Curation Matters” in June 2010. It was directed by Prof. Wendy Duff until 2014, and then by Prof. Christoph Becker (on sabbatical leave since July 2019). Prof. Costis Dallas currently serves as DCI director.