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Controlled LOCKSS: A Trusted Community Archive Ensuring Long-term Access to Digital Content




CLOCKSS website


CLOCKSS (Controlled LOCKSS) is a not for profit joint venture between the world’s leading scholarly publishers and research libraries whose mission is to build a sustainable, geographically distributed dark archive with which to ensure the long-term survival of Web-based scholarly publications for the benefit of the greater global research community.

The University of Edinburgh

The University of Edinburgh is participating in CLOCKSS with three distinct roles.

  • A CLOCKSS steward library acting as an Archive Node and Delivery Host, preserving and making available web-published content following a failure to provide access from more traditional sources.
  • CLOCKSS Board member helping to determine procedures, priorities, and when to trigger content. The CLOCKSS archive is managed by and for its members, with representatives from participating publishers and library organisations
  • A host platform for triggered content via EDINA, a Jisc funded national data centre based at the University of Edinburgh. Triggered content refers to the collection of orphaned and abandoned content that is made available free and open access to all, when it ceases to be available via any publisher and following authorisation from the CLOCKSS Board.

Business Model

Through CLOCKSS, publishers and libraries are working to achieve a sustainable and globally distributed solution to a long-term problem. Over the next five-years CLOCKSS aims to raise an endowment to sustain ongoing costs and mitigate the risks of preserving materials during hard economic times. The endowment, which is intended to lower participatory fees over time, is being built by supporting libraries and publishers who pay annual fees.

CLOCKSS deploys the LOCKSS software as a 'private LOCKSS network', globally distributed across a number of long-lived steward libraries that have agreed to take on an archival role on behalf of the wider international community. Use of open access reduces costs and serves all the world’s scholars, not just member libraries. There is a growing bank of triggered content.

Get Involved

Contributions from libraries are based on the size of the materials budget and range from US$450 to US$15,000 per annum. Support from library consortia is encouraged. UK institutions who wish to get involved can find out more here: Jisc Collections CLOCKSS page

EDINA Contacts

Peter Burnhill, for the University of Edinburgh (Information Services) as a 'CLOCKSS Archive Node' and for EDINA acting as a 'CLOCKSS Delivery Host'.

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EDINA, University of Edinburgh
Argyle House, 3 Lady Lawson Street
Edinburgh, United Kingdom EH3 9DR
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EDINA is the Jisc centre for digital expertise & online service delivery at the University of Edinburgh.