Distributed archives 2013_1018

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Martin t. Olliff presentation at Tri-State Archivists Conference, October 18, 2013, concerning shared appraisal authority and distributed, post-custodial archival management.

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Distributed archives 2013_1018

  1. 1. You Can’t Always Acquire What You Want From the Central Repository to the Collaborative Archives Martin T. Olliff Tri-State Archivists Conference October 18, 2013
  2. 2. 2
  3. 3. Mission • Collect University Records • Collect Community Historical Mss. • Coordinate Knowledge and Research 3
  4. 4. Community Impediments to Collection Development • • • • • Confusion about Role of Archives Distrust of Institutional Placement of Archives Privacy Concerns “Ownership” of Records / Mss. Xenophobia and Antinomianism 4
  5. 5. Proposal • “Distributed” Repositories • Avocational Archives linked to Central Repository – Individuals and Families – Churches, Social Institutions – NGOs – Small Businesses • Shared Appraisal Authority 5
  6. 6. Precedents • Archival Theory – Ham, 1981, “Post-Custodialism” – Documentation Strategy Extension – Jenkinson’s Appriasal – Social Justice • Archival Practice – E.g.: ADAH – State agencies keep own records – Electronic Records 6
  7. 7. What does this look like? • Community Functional Analysis • Hub-and-Spoke – Like Volunteers, but not under one roof – Central Archives is the Hub • Contract Responsibilities 7
  8. 8. Responsibilities of Central Repository • • • • Provide Craft Training Provide Administrative Leadership Provide Processing Supplies at cost Central Description / Research Portal 8
  9. 9. Responsibilities of Distributed Archives • • • • • • • Actually Create an Archives Mission Follow Best Practices as much as possible Ongoing Support Cooperate w/ Central Repository Accept Leadership from Central Repository Submit Adequate Descriptions Someone Goes to Training 9
  10. 10. Advantages • • • • • Archival Advocacy Social Justice and “Participatory Democracy” Secures Better Community Documentation Manage Backlog Local Collection Champions 10
  11. 11. Disadvantages • • • • • Legitimizes Amateurism Privileges Craft over Professional Knowledge Potential Loss of Resources if failure Possible to Lost Track of Collections over Time Possible Appraisal Disputes 11

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