This project has received funding from the European Union’s Seventh Framework Programme under grant agreement no 619568


The activities of PREFORMA are divided into two main parts:

Coordination Activities: these include carrying out the tender procedure and defining the functional and performance criteria for suppliers, including the legal and financial issues; setting up a wide network of stakeholders (memory institutions and research groups); and disseminating the outcomes of the tender.

Collaborative Activities: these constitute the core part of the project where the suppliers design, develop and test the software components.


Under the PREFORMA Coordination and Support Action (CSA), the PREFORMA memory institutions specify requirements and performance criteria for issuing an open tender to procure suppliers as partners in the Collaborative Project (CP).

The CSA is also responsible for the overall PREFORMA project management, and for wide dissemination of the project results. In particular, dissemination of the results of testing commonly available content generation tools for standard file formats. This will contribute to ensuring better future standards that are easier to implement in a conforming manner. In addition, the analysis of how the most commonly used archival file formats can be implemented under open source (copy-lefted) licenses will highlight the importance of open standards and enable future-proof open source licensing alternatives.


Project Management (Leader: RIKSARKIVET)

Requirements phase (Leader: PACKED): Financial and legal aspects will be discussed among the partners and external stakeholders in an open dialogue activity.

Procurement phase (Leader: UNIVERSITA DEGLI STUDI DI PADOVA): The pre-commercial procurement (PCP) tender will be published and evaluated; individual framework contracts will be awarded to the selected suppliers.

Network Expansion phase (Leader: RIKSARKIVET): Starting with the PREFORMA memory institutions, academic partners and the organisations that have signed letters-of-interest during the preparation of the proposal, more stakeholders will be invited to act as a reference group during the project. Some of them will also participate in the Advisory Board (AB) and will contribute to the peer review of key project deliverables. The aim is to establish a sustainable, long-term network of common interest for pre-commercial and commercial procurement for digital preservation.

Outreach phase (Leader: PROMOTER): The project results will be disseminated widely with the aim of gaining broad acceptance for use of the open source tools, recruiting more stakeholders to the PREFORMA network of common interest and contributing to the coordination of the research in this domain. Preparation and organisation of the final conference is included in this phase.


The Collaborative Project (CP) part is organised along three work packages that constitute the core research and development (R&D) work procured by the participating memory institutions:

Design of the PREFORMA system and tools, where the suppliers describe their solutions in terms of detailed functions (Leader: FRAUNHOFER)

Prototyping of the services, where the suppliers develop prototypes of their solutions, satisfying the agreed functional and performance criteria (Leader: HOGSKOLAN I SKOVDE)

Scientific testing of the results, where the prototypes are subjected to scientific testing against datasets provided by the memory institutions (Leader: UNIVERSITA DEGLI STUDI DI PADOVA).

Each phase is executed by the suppliers selected through the tender procedure. The CP work packages are led by academic partners to ensure scientific quality. Memory institutions are task leaders that provide pilot workflows and datasets for the suppliers to test their solutions.

It is foreseen that the prototyping will start at the end of the design phase. A redesign phase will take place on the basis of the results of the first release of the prototype. The second release of the prototype will then be developed and eventually passed to the test phase.

Six suppliers will be selected at the end of the tender procedure (two for each media type) to carry on the first design phase that will last for four months and will  conclude with the ranking of the delivered designs. The suppliers of the best three designs (one for each domain) will be requested to proceed to the prototyping phase. This will include two releases and the re-design phase and will last for 22 months in total. The suppliers will then be requested to proceed to the testing phase that will last for six months.

Assessment of the results of each phase will be carried out under the supervision of the respective WP Leaders and will be based on the competitive evaluation criteria published in the tender procedure.

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