July 31, 2020
Thank you to everyone who contributed to our research and business assessment activities over the past ten months including online surveys, strategic conversations and working meetings with internal and external constituents, and an extensive evaluation of IPI’s existing business and fundraising practices.
In March and April, we hosted three working meetings that collectively engaged colleagues from academic libraries, conservation research centers, conservation and library science training programs, conservation regional centers, federal cultural institutions, fine art museums, and national membership organizations to inform IPI’s research agenda and strategic growth planning for 2021 and beyond. The agendas and roundtable discussions for those meetings were informed by the responses we received to our November 2019 survey. In May, we received more than 460 responses to an additional survey about environmental monitoring preferences. In June, we concluded our assessment activities.
One of the immediate outcomes of our thorough assessment is the decision to explore new possibilities for datalogger enterprises related to IPI’s work in preservation environmental monitoring and management. While we investigate new opportunities in this area, we have halted the production of PEM2® dataloggers and our inventory of dataloggers is limited. We continue to support and service PEM2s in the field and recently added enhancements to PEM2® technical support to improve those services, as shared in our May Newsletter. Our goal is to maximize the positive impact of IPI’s environmental data analysis software, consulting, and hardware services to support the field in sustainable preservation environmental management. In that respect we also continue to focus on strengthening IPI’s unique, web-based, preservation environmental management and analysis software, eClimateNotebook®, and have initiated efforts to expand the compatibility of eClimateNotebook® with a variety of monitoring devices.
IPI’s mission remains to support the preservation of cultural heritage collections in libraries, archives, and museums. We will continue to do so by leading an active preservation research program that informs and advances professional-level education and training activities, publications, consulting services, and the development of practical preservation resources and tools. There are many exciting opportunities to support IPI’s core mission while also strengthening institutional sustainability.
Your use of and investment in IPI services, resources, and tools supports our preservation research program. A successful growth plan will address current preservation field needs that IPI is uniquely qualified to meet while also supporting long-term institutional sustainability at IPI. We are grateful for the funding provided by The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation to support our assessment efforts and to our colleagues at Graham-Pelton for their partnership through the process. We look forward to sharing future updates as we transition from our assessment work to growth plan implementation.
In the summer of 2021, IPI distributed an online questionnaire about crate, crate preparation, and packing materials used by collecting institutions to transport paper-based objects. The questionnaire was posted to the American Institute for Conservation’s Global Conservation Forum and Member Community distribution lists in June and via this quarterly newsletter in July.
The Image Permanence Institute received a National Leadership Grant for Museums from the Institute of Museum and Library Services in the amount of $375,543 to support a three-year research project that will identify critical preservation challenges associated with 3D printed materials and technologies found in museums and develop resources that will support 3D printed object preservation.
In an effort to understand how changes in mechanical system operations in response to the COVID-19 pandemic impacted collections environments across institutions, IPI launched a field study through an online submission platform from October through November 2020.
IPI is thrilled to announce that Dr. Emma Richardson will start her role as Director of Research in July 2021. Emma is the first to hold this new leadership position, responsible for guiding IPI’s research agenda. Emma brings extensive research and leadership experience in the applied sciences, and an impressive professional record in higher education with a focus on cultural heritage.