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Curation Costs Exchange

Understanding and comparing digital curation costs to support smarter investments

Cost Model for Digital Preservation (CMDP)

Creator and Funding
Developed by The Danish National Archives (DNA) and the Royal Danish Library in Denmark (KBDK) and fnded by the Danish Ministry of Culture.
The latest version of the CMDP is from 2012.
The purpose is to increase cost effectiveness of digital preservation activities and to provide a basis for comparing and estimating future cost requirements for digital preservation.
Information assets
Various types of office documents (unformatted/formatted text, spreadsheet, graphic, sound, video, hypertext, geodata, e-mail) and databases.
Pre-ingest, Ingest, Archival Storage, Preservation Planning, Data Management (partially), Administration (partially).
Capital (storage equipment, migration equipment), labour (3 levels).
Present, future (25 years).
Types of information assets (source/production format, destination/preservation format), volume per assets per year, type of storage system, number of copies of each information asset, salary level, person-hours per week.
Type of tool
Analysis, prediction, implemented in a spreadsheet with modest use of VBA.
Availability of tool
The CMDP tool and documentation is available for download at

Further reading

  • Kejser, U.B., Nielsen, A. B. and Thirifays, A., Modelling the Costs of Preserving Digital Assets, in Proceedings of the UNESCO Memory of the World Conference, Vancouver, Canada, 2012.
  • Kejser, U.B., A.B. Nielsen, and A. Thirifays, Cost Model for Digital Preservation: Cost of Digital Migration, The International Journal of Digital Curation 6, no. 1, 2011, 255-267, doi:10.2218/ijdc.v6i1.186.
  • Kejser, U.B, Nielsen, A.B., Thirifays, A., Cost Aspects of Ingest and Normalization, Proceedings of the iPRES2011 Conference, November 1-4, 2011, Singapore, 1-10.
  • Nielsen, A.B., Thirifays, A. and Kejser, U.B, Costs of Archival Storage, in Proceedings of the Archiving 2012 Conference, 2012, 205-210.