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Analyzing Costs - Types

Q. What types of costs can I analyze?

You can attempt to analyze virtually any component of the curation life cycle. However, you must keep in mind how you will allocate indirect costs and overhead, or administrative, costs. Indirect costs are costs that can be attributed to two different processes (or components) and overhead costs are costs that cannot be clearly allocated to any specific process or groups of processes, but are incurred by the organization (or infrastructure) as a whole. However, attempts have been made to analyze the costs of metadata, curation, digital migration and emulation, among other aspects of the entire digital curation lifecycle.


Use Cases

  • Amazon. Amazon Glacier Pricing.

    Provides information on storage costs for Amazon Glacier Pricing. This includes both the inexpensive cost of storage itself and the cost for transferring data in and out of the service.
  • Amazon. Amazon S3 Pricing.

    Provides information on storage and transfer costs for Amazon S3.
  • DuraSpace. DuraCloud Subscription Plans.

    Provides information on service costs for DuraSpace subscriptions
  • Moore, Reagan et al. "Disk and Tape Storage Cost Models". Archiving 2007, 29-32.

    "This paper describes [then-] current estimates of both disk and tape storage based on operational experience at the San Diego Supercomputer Center which operates a large-scale storage infrastructure. These costs include not only the storage hardware costs, but also the costs of supporting servers and related infrastructure, hardware maintenance, software licenses, floor space, utilities and labor costs. A brief discussion of projected cost trends in both disk and tape is provided, as well as a comparison to current web-based commercial storage services."
  • San Diego Supercomputer Center. Chronopolis Pricing.

    Provides the pricing for the Chronopolis data storage offered by U.C. San Diego.
  • Stephens, Andy. "The Application of Life Cycle Costing in Libraries: A Case Study Based on Acquisition and Retention of Library Materials in the British Library." IFLA Journal, 1994, 20(2): 130-140.

    Examines the full life-cycle costing of the British Library's collection management activities.
  • University of Southern California. USC Digital Repository [website]

    Website providing information on the services and prices offered for digitization, preservation, and storage by USC Digital Repository.



  • Bradley, Kevin. APSR Sustainability Issues Discussion Paper. National Library of Australia, 2005.

    Discusses the full range of sustainability issues for digital preservation, but "The Economics of Digital Sustainability," starting on page 15 discusses cost models.
  • Chapman, Stephen. "Counting the Costs of Digital Preservation: Is Repository Storage Affordable?" Journal of Digital Information, 2004, 4(2).

    Older article that compares the rates per gigabyte for storage of digital objects assessed by Harvard University Library and OCLC.
  • Goldstein, Serge J. and Mark Ratliff. DataSpace: A Funding and Operational Model for Long-Term Preservation and Sharing of Research Data, 2012.

    "In this paper we propose that long-term data storage be funded by one-time payments that cover the current costs of storage, and leave enough excess funds to cover on-going replacement and management of that storage. This is made possible by the steady decline in the cost of physical data storage over time, as well as the steady increase in the amount of storage that can be managed by a given number of staff."
  • Kejser, Ulla Bøgvad, Anders Bo Nielsen, and Alex Thirifays. "Cost Model for Digital Preservation: Cost of Digital Migration." The International Journal of Digital Curation , 2011, 1(6): 255-267.

    This article describes a project that built a cost model based on the preservation planning and digital migration components of the OAIS Reference Model and tested the model on two projects at the Danish National Archives.
  • Nationaal Archief. Costs of Digital Preservation.

    Development of a list of indicators that influence the overall costs of digital preservation.
  • Rosenthal, David S. H. et al. "The Economics of Long-Term Digital Storage". Memory of the World in the Digital Age: Digitization and Preservation, Vancouver, September 26-28, 2012.

    Argues that the rate of reduction in the costs of storage over the next decade will slow, and may even stop. If this is true, it implies that disk storage costs will rise in comparison to tape costs and suggests that the current economies of scale afforded by cloud computing storage will decrease significantly.
  • Shenton, Helen. "Life Cycle Collection Management" Liber Quarterly 2003, 13(3/4): 254-272.

    Takes a look at long-term digital preservation, specifically examining the British Library's collections. Includes monographs and serials to come up with a life-cycle cost.

Last updated on 08/26/13, 9:31 pm by callee


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