New Directions in Documentation

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Presentation to the London Archives, libraries and Museums Agency on the new social dimension to Documentation (31.10.2005)

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New Directions in Documentation

  1. 1. New directions in Documentation Nick Poole MDA Director
  2. 2. About MDA <ul><li>The UK’s lead organisation on documentation & knowledge management for collections </li></ul><ul><li>25-year history of working with museums </li></ul><ul><li>Providing training, advice and support to thousands of museum professionals each year </li></ul>
  3. 3. About Documentation <ul><li>A business process for museums </li></ul><ul><li>A fact of life for any organisation which manages large amounts of material </li></ul><ul><li>Essentially, a technical discipline, governed by technical standards </li></ul>
  4. 4. SPECTRUM <ul><li>Maintained in trust by MDA on behalf of the sector </li></ul><ul><li>Created by over 100 museum professionals </li></ul><ul><li>Recognised nationally and internationally as the industry standard for information management </li></ul>
  5. 5. Currently <ul><li>A huge commitment of time and resources </li></ul><ul><li>The fundamental element of public accountability </li></ul><ul><li>Inward-facing, driven by professional practice rather than user/audience need </li></ul>
  6. 6. Some principles <ul><li>Documentation must be driven towards a purpose </li></ul><ul><li>Moving from immutable facts to connections and stories </li></ul><ul><li>Sharing insight and creativity across different professional disciplines </li></ul><ul><li>Standards must work for us, and help us to achieve our core purpose </li></ul>
  7. 8. 5-year Action Plan <ul><li>A shared vision with the Museums Association </li></ul><ul><li>Building Documentation for Diversity with ALM London </li></ul><ul><li>Creating Case Studies which demonstrate the social, professional and economic impact of stories and information </li></ul><ul><li>Working with MLA to build a business case for documentation </li></ul>
  8. 9. Documentation for Diversity <ul><li>Building on the findings of the Revisiting Collections project </li></ul><ul><li>A collaborative development with ALM London </li></ul><ul><li>A simple toolkit which shows how documented information can be mined to create new stories for new audiences </li></ul><ul><li>A methodology for welcoming user’s stories to the information we hold about our collections </li></ul>
  9. 10. Next steps <ul><li>Information and Case Studies on the MDA website </li></ul><ul><li>Introductory factsheets and guidelines </li></ul><ul><li>MDA Training module for London museums </li></ul><ul><li>Joint-funded pilots to refine the methodology </li></ul><ul><li>Considering funding stream Future developments of SPECTRUM </li></ul>
  10. 11. Contact <ul><li>Nick Poole </li></ul><ul><li>MDA Director </li></ul><ul><li>[email_address] </li></ul><ul><li>www.mda.org.uk </li></ul><ul><li>www.collectionsforall.org.uk </li></ul><ul><li>01223 415760 </li></ul>

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