Ten Agents of Deterioration

The Canadian Conservation Institute developed a framework for the preventive conservation of heritage objects in museum and archive collections. This framework identifies the 10 primary threats – known as the “Agents of Deterioration” – specific to heritage environments, and encourages their prevention at the collections level first, by avoiding, blocking and detecting, and then by responding and treating. This integrated approach to conservation has also led to developments in risk assessment.

The framework addresses the agents of deterioration in the following order of importance according to their potential for damaging artifacts and collections:

Spanish version
Spanish translation provided courtesy of the International Centre for the Study of the Preservation and Restoration of Cultural Property (ICCROM) for their members from Latin America and the Caribbean (LATAM). Scientific coordination: Centro Nacional de Conservacion y Restauración, CNCR, Chile,and Universidad Externado de Colombia, Colombia. Translators: Claudia Alejandra PALMA RODRIGUEZ (CHILE), Alejandra CASTRO CONCHA (CHILE); reviewer: Mario Omar Fernandez (Universidad Externado de Colombia)