This fall, the Heritage Health Information (HHI) 2014 survey will launch to assess the state of the nation’s collections held by archives, libraries, historical societies, museums, scientific research collections, and archaeological repositories. The results of the survey will be used to recommend next steps in collections preservation. The Natural Science Collections Alliance is serving as an allied partner in the effort.

About 14,000 institutions that house collections will be invited to participate in the survey, which is administered by Heritage Preservation in partnership with the Institute of Museum and Library Services, the National Endowment for the Humanities, and the National Endowment for the Arts.

HHI 2014 will build upon the success of a 2004 report and will provide the field with the information
necessary to make preserving our nation’s heritage a top priority. The survey will also provide an opportunity to measure progress in the field over the last ten years through collecting comparable data—with a new emphasis on digital collections.

The first survey, conducted in 2004, and subsequent report, A Public Trust at Risk: The Heritage Health Index Report on the State of America’s Collections, shed light on the condition of the more than 4.8 billion artifacts held by more than 30,000 U.S. collecting institutions. The report discovered that immediate action was needed to prevent the loss of nearly 190 million artifacts. The report was the catalyst for extensive new funding in preservation including the IMLS initiative Connecting to Collections.

More information about HHI 2014 is available at http://www.heritagepreservation.org/HHI/.