Our Mission and Services

Preservation Services Preservation Services supports the teaching and research mission of the University of Virginia by facilitating access to the Library’s research collections. We seek ways to maintain the physical integrity of all collection items, regardless of format. Where necessary, in order to provide access to intellectual content for the researcher, we reformat objects.  We preserve and ensure long-term access to digitized and born-digital content.

Preservation Services provides the following services to the University Libraries:

  • Audiovisual conservation: We have the equipment to repair and digitize most of the commonly held audio and video formats in the Library’s collections. We also have the ability to view, inspect, and repair motion picture film.
  • Book and paper conservation: Our Book and Paper Conservator cares for special collections materials.
  • Book repair for circulating collections: Activities include repairing books and paper, pamphlet binding, making protective enclosures (phase boxes, wrappers, and portfolios), and outsourcing a small number of preservation facsimiles for circulating collections materials.
  • Commercial binding: Materials prepared and routed from the 11 departmental libraries are processed and sent to a commercial bindery.
  • Consulting: For special projects, grant applications, and overarching preservation concerns.
  • Digital preservation: We stabilize incoming born-digital materials (including web-based materials) and ensure long-term access to digitized and born digital items.
  • Disaster preparedness and recovery: We provide preparedness instruction for staff and disaster/recovery supplies for every library building. We develop and disseminate collection recovery plans to guide staff responses should a disaster occur.
  • Environmental monitoring: Temperature, lighting, and relative humidity are regularly monitored in Alderman and Small Special Collections buildings.
  • Outsourcing of conservation treatment: Our Book and Paper Conservator and our Audiovisual Conservator oversee outsourced collections care as needed.
  • Preservation outreach: Activities include celebrating Home Movie Day, Preservation Week, and May Day, and hosting various preservation awareness events with donors and Friends of the Library.

Preservation Services is dedicated to maximizing the life expectancy and utility of all collections for current and future users of the Library. We follow a preservation strategy based on principles of care and stewardship.