A fundamental role of the National Library is to preserve Australia's documentary heritage, and to make sure it is available for people to use for as long as possible. Collecting material is only one step towards achieving this - the material also needs to be looked after if it is to remain useable. The aim of the National Library's preservation program is to maintain and preserve items according to their use and their significance.

The National Library’s preservation role is guided by its key objective to preserve and maintain all Australian and significant non-Australian library materials to ensure they are available for current and future use. This objective applies to both digital and non-digital information resources, although the Library recognises that it will use different methods and draw on different skills, procedures and partnerships, for managing digital and non-digital collections.

The ongoing focus of the National Library's web archiving activities is to understand the complex and evolving technical issues involved in preserving Australian online information and to develop both internal and national strategies to ensure future access to this information.

The aim of the National Library's preservation program is to maintain and preserve items according to their use and their significance. The collection consists of more than 6 million items in many different formats. The Library uses different methods and draws on different skills, procedures and partnerships to manage the preservation of both digital and non-digital collections.