geert-jan van bussel the theoretical framework for the 'archive-as-is' an organization oriented view on archives - part ii contextualized by metadata that capture changing contexts in organizational, social and personal circumstances. Hence, the lifecycle of records takes place within a continuum of management and context. 3. Archives are neither complete, nor neutral or objective sources of 'truth (Lane and Hill 2010). Although they are 'process bound information' (Cook, 1997, p. 48; Thomassen, 1999, p. 76) and 'a sediment of organizational' (or personal!) 'actions' (PIVOT, 1994), they are constructed bodies, configured to retain all those records organizations or persons choose to retain, enriched with all the metadata that are allowed to be included in metadata schedules. Archives are primarily used to reconstruct the past (for, for instance, accountability) (Van Bussel, 2012b). They retain (at a minimum) all records that, according to legal obligations, have to be kept for specified periods of time. Archives embed all preoccupations, moral codes and preconceptions entrenched in procedures, business processes, legislation, and social environments. They are subjective constructs (Greetham, 1999). Not all records are captured in the organizational archive: employees may decide to delete them prematurely, because they do not find them relevant, do not want them to be known to anyone, do not want them to become part of accountability processes, or out of deviant behaviour. Archives change constantly: new records are added daily, metadata are added or changed, and records that have reached the end of their retention period are removed from the archive and irreparably destroyed. Only a (small) part of the archive is preserved indefinitely for its 'historical value'. That part of the archive can only deliver a distorted view of the reality in which the creating organization func tioned (Kaplan, 2000). 4. In the Manual for the Arrangement and Description of Archives (1896, Muller et al, 2003, p. 19) in its Statement 2, it is declared that an archive 'is an organic whole', a 'living organism, which grows, takes shape, and undergoes changes in accordance with fixed rules. The rules which govern the composition, the arrangement and the formation of an archival collection, therefore, cannot be fixed by the archivist in advance; he can only study the organism and ascertain the rules under which it was formed' (italics by GJvB). Although this is true for archives that are no longer a 'living organism' (as is stated in a footnote), there may arise a problem for archives that are: organizational archives as digital, constructed bodies need to be configured in advance. This means that the business rules that govern composition, arrangement, formation, and (even) method of description are defined before the archive as a construct is created. They do not have a 'life'; they do not 'grow organically'. It is one of the reasons why archivists need to participate in the configuration phases of digital archives. But what does it mean for the statement of Muller, Feith and Fruin about the archive as an 'organic whole' when the business rules that define an archive need to be fixed in advance and do not grow organically? I do not have an answer now, but it needs careful consideration and research. 5. It is possible that archival repositories will be 'without walls' (Cook, 2007, p. 429-430), but the opposite is also true. In this age of big data, organizational chains, inter-organizational data warehouses, cloud computing, authentic registrations, and computer mediated exchange, the archival repository may be changing into a 'hub' for access to the original organizational and personal systems or web-environments that have managed the archive from the moment of its creation (a postcustodial view: Acland, 1991; Bearman, 1993a; Upward and McKemmish, 1994). Charles Dollar (1992) stated that as the integrity of archives and records would be best preserved in its original ICT environment, the costs of proprietary systems would be extremely high, and technology obsolescence would make preservation extremely complex, management of archives would become unsustainable for any archival repository. Duranti's (2007, p. 464-465) argument is that a physical place is an absolute necessity to maintain the integrity of archives. It is necessary that 'the archival institution establish an architecture in which the records of all creating bodies, once received, can be put into clearly defined and stable relationships, and in which their broader context can be identified and the associations among the records never broken' (a custodial view). Even adherents that agree with Duranti's argument about the absolute importance of guaranteeing the authenticity of records have disagreed with her conclusion that this only can be achieved by taken physical custody of the archive by an archival repository (for a discussion: Cunningham, 2015). Both statements are ideological and not substantiated with convincing practical evidence. In the theoretical framework of the 'Archive- as-Is', it is not important whether archives are preserved by the organizations that created them (or their successors) or transferred to an archival repository, although the practical consequences for EIM are far-reaching. 6. Archivists are part of the information management function of organizations. They help organizations in configuring policies, procedures, business processes, and ICTs to shape the organizational archive and to implement laws and regulations for compliance and accountability. They assist in developing metadata schedules that try to capture organizational and environmental contexts. They play a crucial role in reconstructing the past and appraising, selecting, contextualizing, and preserving records within the organizational archive. When they are working with an archival repository, they are acquiring and preserving archives, contextualizing and relating them, and realizing access. But they do not shape an objective narrative of past occurrences in preserving and contextualizing archives. They need to acknowledge their own subjectivity and the impossibility of creating complete and objective organizational or personal archives. They are part in deciding which archives will be indefinitely preserved and are accountable for gaps, inconsistencies, and distortions in (and between) them. Archivists are not neutral, independent, and objective custodians of organizational, cultural or historical knowledge. 7. My definition of a record (in Part I of this article) allows the inclusion of information objects that are traditionally not known as records and have not been part of organizational archives. There are information objects that, as Jenkinson (2003, p. 342) stated, have become a record because 'someone decided to stick it into a file rather than the bin'. They are set aside and preserved, maybe out of a notion of potential future value (as Schellenberg, 2003, p. 11-16, stated), maybe because of subjective perceptions of employees. If an organization wants to preserve an ebook because it is perceived as extremely valuable for the organization (although it is not evidence or cultural heritage), according to my definition it can be considered a record. archives in liquid times 46 47

Periodiekviewer Koninklijke Vereniging van Archivarissen

Jaarboeken Stichting Archiefpublicaties | 2017 | | pagina 25