JAIC 2005, Volume 44, Number 2, Article 6 (pp. 127 to 141)
AN INTEGRATED APPROACH TO RISK ASSESSMENTS AND CONDITION SURVEYS
ABSTRACT—This article discusses the integration of risk assessment and collection condition surveys, with reference to the uncertainties inherent in each of these two procedures. While condition surveys provide information on a collection's immediate condition, risk assessments add predictive aspects on the collection's potential for deterioration. Looking at probable causes of damage in a condition assessment can provide a link to the agents of deterioration examined in a risk assessment. Combining these two complementary assessments can provide useful insights and clarify priorities for the collection's management goals. Comparison of the advantages and disadvantages of two types of evaluation processes in visual perception, top-down and bottom-up, are discussed as they apply to the integration of the two assessments. Additionally, the article describes the use of an integrated assessment approach for a survey of the English Heritage collections. In conclusion, it was found that integrating condition surveys with risk assessments could increase the knowledge and understanding of current and future expectations of a collection.