Grand Challenges in the Archival Field Redux

DeNeve Plaza Room A&B

Monday, July 9, 2012

9:00 am – 10:30 pm

Building on a plenary at AERI 2011 and workshops in AERI 2012, Sue McKemmish (Monash University) leads discussion on developing research and education agendas that address grand societal challenges.

AERI began an initiative in 2010 to develop an archival and recordkeeping research agenda associated with societal grand challenges. The first three columns of the Table below provide examples of societal grand challenges and associated archival challenges which were workshopped by AERI participants in the 2011 plenary.

In the 2012 plenary, we will map challenges in particular areas of archival research against the societal and archival challenges. The fourth column of the Table provides an example mapping of recordkeeping metadata and archival description research challenges. The mapping is an exemplar relating to one stream of recordkeeping and archival research.

In the plenary we will explore similar mappings for other streams of archival research, e.g. recordkeeping informatics, appraisal, digital curation and preservation, community archiving, theory building, modelling participatory archives, recordkeeping and archival law and policies.  Developing an agenda based on these kinds of mappings would both build upon and extend current research efforts while supporting various grand challenge areas.

The mapping underscores the fact that while research in the field has expanded, diversified and matured over the past 25 years, there is a vastly wider expanse of potential and valuable engagement that has not taken place to date.  The goal of the AERI initiative is to use this identification and mapping of challenges to identify and promote research and research collaborations capable of making significant and meaningful contributions across this global and societal expanse.

TABLE 1: Grand Societal Challenges and Archival Challenges

Area

Societal Challenge

Archival Challenge

Metadata Challenges

Climate Change

Building a green economy

Building an integrated global archive of records relating to climate change

Interoperability of Metadata Schemas and Encoding Schemes

Peace and Security

Decolonisation

Decolonising the archive, archival functionality and recordkeeping practice

Developing community-centered, value and culture-sensitive Metadata Schema and tools

Development

Democratisation

Transforming archival access

Transforming current Archival Access Metadata Frameworks and approaches to enable citizens to participate in the constitution of the archives and to fully exercise their rights to access archival sources of information.

Corporate Governance

Accountability and transparency

Developing recordkeeping and archival structures, strategies and tactics that support accountability and transparency

Ensuring that Recordkeeping and Archival Metadata and Frameworks & Standards fully support accountability and transparency requirements

Human Rights

Enabling Indigenous peoples, oppressed and marginalised communities to exercise rights of self-determination

Building participatory archival models that support the exercise of cultural, information and memory rights as human rights

Building Metadata Frameworks that support participatory archival models

Social Justice and Inclusion

Bridging the digital and information divides

Bridging the archival divide

Redeveloping mainstream archival Metadata Frameworks, Standards and Tools to be more inclusive of the requirements and diverse needs of our local, national and global communities

Health & Well Being

Addressing major health and well being issues, e.g. HIV/AIDS, malaria control, sexual violence

Developing recordkeeping and archival structures, strategies and tactics that support global health & well being initiatives

Ensuring that Recordkeeping and Archival Metadata and Frameworks & Standards fully support

Resilient Communities and Cultures

Recognising and valuing local community cultures and knowledge as critical components in building strong, healthy communities

Supporting independent, sustainable community-based archives

Developing community-centered, value and culture-sensitive Metadata Schema and tools

Information Society and Technological Change

Addressing the complexity and plurality of the worlds of recorded information in online cultures

Developing global and local archival structures, strategies and tactics to address the “infinitely expanding … continuum of recorded information that is engulfing us”

Investigating how Metadata Frameworks, Standards and Tools can be designed to address complexity and pluralisation.

For more information, download:

Grand Challenges Table
AERI 2012 Plenary Grand Challenges in the Archival Field anon

AERI Grand Challenges

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