Managing Institutional Archives: Foundational Principles and Practices

Managing Institutional Archives: Foundational Principles and Practices

Managing Institutional Archives: Foundational Principles and Practices

Managing Institutional Archives: Foundational Principles and Practices

Synopsis

Cox covers all aspects of the management of archival programs, including appraisal and acquisition, preservation and security, arrangement, description, and reference, fund-raising, grantsmanship, and cooperation. The impact of new information technology on organizations and the implications for their archives are discussed. The book is based on a wide reading of archival theory and practice and nearly two decades of archival experience by the author. It provides essential aid to those considering the establishment of an institutional archive as well as to practicing archivists.

Excerpt

Individuals are likely to approach a book about managing institutional archives with certain presuppositions and expectations. Some individuals will search for a basic text that, in one single volume, answers all of their questions about what constitutes institutional archives and how they should be managed. This book is not intended for this purpose, at least partly because the author does not believe that this is an achievable objective. The body of archival knowledge has grown too large, and the constant change in this knowledge makes this objective difficult to achieve for any type of archival program. Nevertheless, the size and complexity of archival knowledge that should be mastered by any archivist, including institutional archivists, have certainly contributed to the length of this volume.

Others will expect to find a book that digests management theory and principles and relates them to the administration of institutional archives. There have been some noteworthy efforts at achieving exactly this goal in other fields. John Rizzo's text on library management was his "attempt to bring certain aspects of the management field to aspiring and practicing librarians. . . . On the whole the book is more about management than it is about libraries." This book does not take this approach because the author is convinced that there are excellent texts on management readily available to the institutional archivist and because there has been a dearth of efforts to apply in a systematic way basic management theory to archival programs such as those found in institutional settings. Writing a book of . . .

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