The Image Permanence Institute (IPI) is a university-based, research center in the College of Art and Design at Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT) dedicated to supporting the preservation of cultural heritage collections in libraries, archives, and museums around the world.
IPI achieves this mission by maintaining 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. IPI resides in a 7,000 square foot space in the Gannett building of the College of Art and Design and staff members include preservation research scientists, environmental management specialists, a materials testing researcher, web application and publication designers, and business operations personnel. The staff provides a wide range of expertise including research and dissemination skills applied collaboratively in conducting research initiatives, creating professional workshops and webinars, developing web applications and publications, and providing consulting services. All of these activities focus on assisting cultural institutions with improving their preservation programs and in most instances could not be duplicated by any other existing organization.
IPI's resources are recognized by cultural heritage professionals worldwide. An online survey conducted in 2017 by the International Centre for the Study of Preservation and Restoration of Cultural Property (ICCROM) in collaboration with the Canadian Conservation Institute (CCI) explored the learning preferences and working contexts of cultural heritage professionals internationally and ranked IPI’s resources fifth in the top-fifteen favorite preventive conservation tools and resources used by survey participants from Asia and the Pacific, Latin America and the Caribbean, Europe and North America. IPI was the only university-based research center identified in the top fifteen along with national and private institutions including the Canadian Conservation Institute (CCI), US National Park Service (NPS), the Getty Conservation Institute (GCI) and the American Institute for Conservation (AIC).
IPI is a unique preservation research center within an academic environment. Our research-informed resources and services are used internationally to support the preservation of cultural heritage collections in libraries, archives, and museums.