ID: 100



MARTIN BERENDSE (1963) studied Law at the University of Utrecht and joined the office of the University Board between 1984 and 1986. He was consultant/account manager for one of the main advertising companies in Amsterdam, before he moved to the theatre business. Between 1989 and 1998 he was director of a theatre festival in Utrecht, a national agency for theatre and dance in Amsterdam and the Rotterdam Repertory Theatre Company. He started at the Dutch Ministry of Education, Culture and Science as head of general cultural policy division in 1998 and worked as (dep.) director of the Arts Department/deputy director-general Culture and Media.
Since 2008 he is general director of The National Archives of The Netherlands (Nationaal Archief) in The Hague and since 2009 national archivist. In 2010 he was elected as president of the International Council on Archives, a worldwide non-governmental organization of archival institutions and professionals, based in Paris.
Martin Berendse is married and father of 3 children.


PERSIST, the information society and digital sustainability, a UNESCO Memory of the World Program

Brief summary:

In this plenary session participants will be informed and discuss about PERSIST a project of UNESCO Memory of the WorldAnd furthermore, this session is a call on those present to take the message of PERSIST home and to help take this UNESCO project to the next stage.


The outcome of the Memory of the World Conference in Vancouver in 2012 was the pressing need to establish a roadmap for solutions, agreements and policies to ensure long term access and trustworthy preservation of digital information, including issues such as open government, open data, open access and electronic government.
The follow up in 2013 in The Hague was PERSIST, a Platform to Enhance the Sustainability of the Information Society Trans globally. UNESCO joins forces with the ICA and IFLA to enhance the sustainability of the information society. It aims at the cooperation between governments, social organizations and the IT-industry and create practical solutions in this area.
Within the PERSIST project three arenas have been identified. The policy arena  will raise awareness among governments and the IT-industry about the importance of sustainable digital preservation in light of good governance and the free flow of information. Parallel to this top down approach, the content curation arena and the technical requirements arena will develop pilots on the ground, to gather input for practical solutions. The content curation arena will address the question of  what  to preserve and the responsibility of heritage institutions in that respect. The technical requirements arena will support these findings with answers for issues of technology, such as backward and forward compatibility of data creation software.
Participants will be informed on the state of affairs of the Persist project and will be invited to discuss the important issues that arise from the three selected arenas. Furthermore, this session is a call on those present to take the message of PERSIST home and to help take this UNESCO project to the next stage.

Scientific contribution:

The outcome of PERSIST will be about:

- business models that can be adopted;

- reassessment of the role of industry, government and heritage institutions;

- the information society and democratic rights;

- practical answers to innovation.


UNESCO, digital sustainability, access to the information society, preservation, public-private partnership, standardization