n.a persistent, actionable URL identifier scheme designed by the California Digital Library that can be applied to any information artifact, including real-world objectsKunze 2003, 1The ARK (Archival Resource Key) is the only persistent naming scheme for internet information objects that squarely faces the service issues underlying practical electronic permanence.Kunze 2003, 8Moreover, this proximity to fully expressive metadata shields the ARK scheme from internationalization pressures that are forcing the other identifier schemes (URI and Handle) to deal with the serious complications surrounding inclusion of language and character set indicators inside identifiers.Kunze 2004, 18The ARK naming scheme is designed to facilitate the high-quality and persistent identification of information objects.a URL conforming to the schemeCDL 2020aARKs are URLs designed to support long-term access to information objects. In 2001 ARKs were introduced to identify objects of any type: digital objects—documents, databases, images, software, websites, etc.; physical objects—books, bones, statues, etc.; living beings and groups—people, animals, companies, orchestras, etc.; intangible objects—places, chemicals, diseases, vocabulary terms, performances, etc.Kunze and Martin 2010, 34Outside of CDL’s bibliographic systems, ARK (Archival Resource Key) identifiers are used for most digital assets. (ARK is an actionable identifier optimized for persistence that the CDL was instrumental in developing.)
Implementation of ARKs within archives include identifiers for archival resources, especially digital resources, and identifiers for archival descriptions.