Arctos costs include data migration for new collections, annual operating expenses, and new developments.
Costs for initial data migration are a one-time expense, and are assessed and negotiated when a new collection joins Arctos (see Joining Arctos).
Annual Operating Expenses
Annual operating costs are shared by Arctos participants, and incoming collections must negotiate an understanding about costs with the Arctos Steering Committee. Because Arctos’s infrastructure is highly scalable, the addition of new institutions typically reduces the cost per participant. Currently, the annual operating budget of Arctos is ~$162,000. This cost covers the following expenses:
- Arctos hosting at the Texas Advanced Computing Center, including all hardware, backup, and security needs.
- Support for Arctos technical staff, including the Lead Programmer (100% time) and Database Administrator (25% time).
- Miscellaneous expenses, including Arctos-related travel as needed, hardware or software upgrades as needed, and domain name and web hosting fees.
Contributions by collections to the costs of operating Arctos are negotiable. As a starting point, we have developed a cost matrix that allocates costs according to institution size and whether the institution is considered “high maintenance” (frequent requests for development or data support by technical staff), “moderate maintenance,” or “low maintenance” (only occasional requests). This matrix is based on current institutions in Arctos, and will change (costs reduced) as new institutions are added. Collections should contact the chairs of the Steering and Advisory committees to negotiate costs.
Arctos is not a static archive. It is a dynamic collection management information system that is continually adding new features for querying, managing, and integrating diverse kinds of natural history data. Requests for major new developments in Arctos (major enhancements to existing features, completely innovative features) require external funding. Such developments are typically driven by grant proposals submitted by individual participating institutions. Any institution who submits a proposal with funding for new Arctos developments must obtain a letter of support from the Chair of the Arctos Steering Committee.