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Depositing with PARADISEC


Basic metadata describing PARADISEC's collection can be freely and easily searched through OLAC, ANDS or the LINGUIST LIST gateway.

Access to the collection and catalogue records is available here:

Access to data in the PARADISEC repository is available to those who have clicked the access agreement (see the access form). A nominal fee may be charged for files delivered on CD/DVD.

PARADISEC has been funded by the Universities of Sydney, Melbourne, New England, ANU the Australian Research Council and Grangenet.

View a glossary of acronyms used on this site.


To report broken links or for comments on this webpage, email PARADISEC.

Depositing with PARADISEC

Click here to see a video guide to using the PARADISEC catalog.
Amanda Harris and Tote Tepano sign the Paradisec deposit form for Tote's Rapanui materials  

PARADISEC does not currently have the resources to actively collect data. We rely on the community of linguists, ethnomusicologists and ethnographers to deposit material with us for safe keeping and long-term accessibility.

Because we have seen a number of collections that are part of deceased estates, we also urge current fieldworkers to make a will (see our information for depositors).

Depositors can specify conditions on the use of their data in a deposit form. Material stored in PARADISEC is available subject to the conditions set out by the depositor and only registered users can access primary records.

New depositors can fill out a minimal set of metadata (available here), that can be imported into the catalogue. Click here for further information for depositors.

Costing a deposit

Since its commencement in 2003 PARADISEC has digitised thousands of hours of analog audio, mainly financed by grants of various kinds, but also patching together funding from various sources to cover the work done for unfunded collections. In 2014, following a sharp increase in demand for digitisation and archival services, and in collaboration with the international network DELAMAN we are asking any grant writers who want to archive with us to include an allowance for that purpose. In discussion with the National Science Foundation in the USA it seems that 8% of the grant total is a reasonable amount to request, rather than trying to estimate exactly how much material will be deposited. Please contact us for more details.

Preferred deposit formats for PARADISEC

PARADISEC has so far focussed on digitising audio tapes, but we intend to build up a repository of digital objects including all the textual material that is currently being produced for theses, dictionaries, grammars, articles and so on.

The only non-digital materials we are able to convert are audio tapes (reel to reel and cassette). 

For existing digital material these are the formats for deposit:

Text: txt, xml, pdf, rtf (we can undertake to convert from MS Word to these formats if necessary)
Audio: DAT, .WAV (16bit 48khz, or as close to the archival standard of 24bit, 96Khz as possible). (At present we are not able to ingest 16-bit 32khz (LP mode) but depositors should contact us to discuss these options. We do not advocate the use of minidisc for recording but do have the capacity to ingest minidisc and can assist in archiving minidisc files.)
Images: TIF/ TIFF
Video: mxf, DV native format can be accessioned

Files created in Elan are in an xml format and the .eaf file can be deposited as it is, ideally named the same as the media file it is a transcript of. Fieldworks files need to be exported to xml (one for the lexicon and one for the text) and we can also accept the '.fwbackup' file created by Fieldworks.

Tapes submitited to PARADISEC are assessed based on PARADISEC’s established criteria including: the condition of the tape; the regional origin of the material and the status of the language recorded. Any tapes which are assessed as being outside of the scope of the PARADISEC project are labelled and stored until they can be returned to the depositor with the rest of the deposited tapes. Tapes that comply with PARADISEC’s criteria are accessioned into the collection. Each tape accessioned is catalogued and assigned a persistent identifier and labelled with this identifier. The tapes are then assigned a priority for digitisation according to the PARADISEC criteria and are placed in a queue to be digitised. 

Two digital files are created from the original tape: an archival standard 24bit/96khz file (filename.wav) and an MP3 file (filename.mp3). The archival standard version and the MP3 files are stored on a mass storage system. The digital files which are created can be accessed through the web via the individual filenames, for example the file 'AB1-002-A.mp3' will be accessed via: and the file 'YZ2-P8888-B.wav' via Unless the files are on open access, only those people with permission (specified by the depositor) will be able to download the audio files. Access is password protected and users have to click an agreement detailing conditions of access.

Here are two short videos that explain how to use Nabu, the PARADISEC catalog. The first video is aimed at users of the catalog, and the second is aimed at potential depositors.

To Download a summary of our format standards or for our deposit form, follow the links below:

PARADISEC Digital Standards rtf or pdf

PARADISEC Deposit Form pdf or rtf or html


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