Overview

SPN was formed in 2016 during the Software Preservation Network Forum in Atlanta, Georgia, USA. SPN believes that  software should be curated and preserved because it is both: a dependency to access existing digital data and because it has intrinsic cultural value due to its mediating role in our lives. Software is critical information infrastructure.

Our growing network includes colleagues from design firms, public libraries, history of computing museums, research data archives, university libraries and the open source software community. Individual participants range in role and perspective, including legal scholar-practitioners, digital preservation specialists, metadata specialists, data curators, digital conservators, knowledge managers, archivists, software developers and data journalists.

SPN Coordinating Committee Goals 2021-2022

Finances & Human Resources

  • Create a financial plan (with fiscal milestones) and establish operating administrative costs and HR needs
  • Establish initial pilot pricing for services; understand and relate the value of a SPN membership

Engagement

  • Generate and track metrics related to programming and community resources
  • Develop an outreach strategy that meets the demonstrated needs of both members and non-members (via survey)

Vision

  • Establish, document, and coordinate both existing core and affiliated organizational work to assess and align past, current, and future work

Infrastructure

  • Document existing dependencies and exit strategies

Governance

  • Finalize governance procedures with an eye towards growing diverse community leadership
  • Coordinate and make transparent the output of the WGs

Values


  • Community

    SPN connects and engages the diverse communities of information and communication technology, cultural heritage preservation, law, public policy, social science, natural science, arts, and humanities organizations that create, use and curate software.

  • Sustainability

    Sustainability

    SPN encourages the software development and research communities to build tools; develop methodologies; create robust documentation; and adhere to practices for software that facilitate long-term access.

  • Access

    Access

    SPN enables long-term access to software and software-dependent cultural heritage through standards development, documentation, software development, and training.

  • Transparency

    Transparency

    SPN is dedicated to earning the trust of our broad community through open documentation, open processes, and open standards.

  • Advocacy

    Advocacy

    SPN raises awareness for the essential role of software preservation in effective digital stewardship through the combined efforts of collecting organizations, academic researchers, legal experts, software developers & vendors, archivists, media archaeologists, and information technology professionals.

Approach

SPN applies a Collective Impact approach as follows:

  • Common Agenda

    SPN connects and engages the diverse communities of information and communication technology, cultural heritage preservation, law, public policy, social science, natural science, arts, and humanities organizations that create, use and curate software.

  • Shared Measurement

    SPN members determine what specific, measureable steps the community can take towards the collective agenda. SPN currently has seed-funded goals for 2019 – 2020 which allow members to measure progress towards the collective agenda.

  • Reinforcing Activities

    Stakeholder-specific work (the work of a single organization or grouping of organizations within SPN) must be coordinated so that each group’s work bears an explicit, reciprocal relationship with the work of the whole collective.

  • Constant Communication

    Constant communication is necessary to demonstrate a commitment to fairness and evidence-based decision making overtime. SPN uses internal meetings, community events and the STACKTRACE Newsletter to exchange information.

  • Backbone Organization

    Paid staff undertake the coordination and management of the day-to-day facilitation work, including stakeholder engagement, communications, and data collection and analysis.

Staff

Our team of passionate, dedicated professionals represent varied perspectives and areas of expertise. We all share a commitment to long-term access for software and software-dependent materials.

Members

Founding Members

Join Us

The Software Preservation Network (SPN) is a collective action effort ensuring long term access to software through community engagement, infrastructure support, and knowledge generation. Network participation includes colleagues from design firms, public libraries, history of computing museums, research data archives, university libraries and the open source software community.

Learn more about the benefits of membership and sponsorship on the Get Involved page.