AADDA is an 18-month project to enhance the sustainability of a substantial dark archive of UK domain websites collected between 1996 and 2010 by the Internet Archive, copies of which were recently acquired by the JISC and are stored at the British Library on their behalf. The project team will work with researchers in contemporary history in particular, and digital humanities in general, to obtain feedback on the feasibility of using web archives at an analytical level. The project will build on this feedback and on the existing UK Web Archive interface in order to develop new forms of analytical access to this collection, thereby enabling researchers to carry out unique and hitherto impossible research queries. This will make a significant contribution to the global understanding of the research value of web archives, particularly for collections that span over a decade and more. Proven clarification of the utility of web archives for scholarly research will significantly enhance the long-term sustainability of the collection and provide valuable data about use cases for justification of ongoing funding.
The project will assess and aim to increase the acknowledged value of domain web archives for scholarly research. Following a survey of current perceptions and consultation with researchers, it will develop prototype tools for the exploitation of domain web archives, raise awareness of the material and services available, promote discussion and debate among key stakeholders, and inform future scholarly access arrangements at a domain level.
The project is led by Dr Jane Winters (IHR), and managed by Dr Peter Webster (IHR), working closely with Maureen Pennock and colleagues at the British Library and Dr Anne Alexander (University of Cambridge). Evaluation will be undertaken by Simon Tanner (King's College London).