Eun G. Park and Sam Oh have published "Examining Attributes of Open Standard File Formats for Long-Term Preservation and Open Access" in the latest issue of Information Technology and Libraries.
Here's an excerpt:
This study examines the attributes that have been used to assess file formats in literature and compiles the most frequently used attributes of file formats in order to establish open standard file format selection criteria. A comprehensive review was undertaken to identify the current knowledge regarding file format selection criteria. The findings indicate that the most common criteria can be categorized into five major groups: functionality, metadata, openness, interoperability and independence. These attributes appear to be closely related. Additional attributes include presentation, authenticity, adoption, protection, preservation, reference and others.