Editorial

From Archivoz Magazine we wish you a Merry Christmas, and we invite you to read the 10 most read articles of 2019

One more year! We at Archivoz wish you all a happy holiday season, and hope that the coming year of 2020 is filled with personal and professional success for you all.

We feel that the year’s end is a perfect time to thank our readers and contributors for having made 2019 such a special year for Archivoz. Over these last twelve months, we have seen our project grow, from its beginnings in 2017, to more than 130,000 readers around the world, thanks to the splendid efforts of a multidisciplinary editorial team made up of professionals from twelve different countries on four different continents. But all of that would have been impossible without the willing participation of over 75 field experts who have taken part in interviews and contributed original articles to our magazine. To all of you we owe a great deal of the success we enjoy among our peers.

We close out the year confident that we have done our best to document trends and developments in our field and to create and publish high-quality content, having worked hard to craft informative interviews, to rescue and disseminate our forgotten audiovisual heritage, in the creation of new fora for dialogue by way of our First Archivoz Symposium in Madrid (taking the opportunity to announce ongoing development of our second symposium, to be held in Bogotá, Colombia), and in the search for synergy and collaboration with professional organizations, as with the recent collaborative agreement signed with SEDIC (the Spanish Society for the Creation and Documentation of Scientific Information).

As a farewell to 2019, as we head into our Christmas break (from December 23 to January 5, in order to prepare a few surprises for the new year), we leave you with our three top articles of the year in each of the languages in which we publish. Enjoy, and we’ll see you on the flipside!

Articles in Spanish language:
Articles in Portuguese language:
Articles in English language:
Articles in Italian language:

Revista Archivoz signs an agreement of collaboration with the Spanish Society for Scientific Information and Documentation

It is a source of great pride to share with you that Revista Archivoz has reached a collaborative agreement with the Sociedad Española de Documentación e Información Científica (Spanish Society for Scientific Information and Documentation), Spain’s principal association dedicated to information production, documentation and administration. Consequently, the magazine will now fall officially under the editorship of SEDIC, although our current creative teams will continue in place. In this way, we are able to place our efforts under the umbrella of a well-established organization that is willing to partner with us to continue growing this project.

SEDIC’s mission is the advancement and development of information professionals, in order to enable them to work together with the public and thereby contribute directly to public welfare and the creation of value. Its main objective is the establishment of an innovative organizational space focusing on the demands of the field in a way that is effective, adaptive, and sustainable. We at Revista Archivoz hope to add to this effort through the publication of relevant and interesting content and the participation of professionals around the world.

We are confident that this project will continue to evolve, and to that end, we have developed a new design for our magazine, which we will unveil soon.

Archivoz’s newsroom closes for holidays until the 19th of August

During the last months, Archivoz has been settled down as a divulgation channel specialised in archives and records management. All of this has been possible, mostly due to the people following and reading us from all around the world.

During last year, we created and expanded our editorial team in different disciplines, giving a voice to different professions (archivists, librarians, documentarists, researchers and journalist) and different nationalities. Currently, we have editorial teams in Senegal, Argentina, Australia, United Kingdom, United States, Belgium, Brasil, Portugal, Chile, Colombia, Cuba, Ecuador, Spain, Italy and the Middle East (Qatar), and we are working to bring new members to our team. It has been hard but rewarding work.

Being such a multidisciplinary and global team, and thanks to all the professionals that collaborate with us, we have been able to increase our impact to a level that we would have never imagined. To all of them, and of course, to all of our readers: thanks!.

Now, it is time for us to take a deserved holidays. It is going to be a two weeks break that will give us some rest and time to think about all the improvements that we can make.

We will be back on the 19th of August with new and exciting contents. Wait for it!.

Kind regards,

Archivoz

Do you want to become an editor? Archivoz open new vacancies

After nearly two years of operation, Archivoz continues to grow as an informative international project providing a platform for professionals from archives and information industries all around the world. It showcases their concerns and experiences as well as the unusual aspects of our profession.

From our archival perspective, we have tried to develop a coherent editorial line focused on themes of interest for the professional, while ensuring the language and format remains accessible to readers outside the information sector. We actively seek to include members from other professions and contexts related directly related to records management and archivist.

In this short period, we have created a project that continues to grow thanks, mainly, to its readers, but also to all the professionals and students who have made it possible through their volunteer efforts.

Now, the time has come to grow further, and we are looking for new professionals or students who would like to support Archivoz to increase its international reach by volunteering as web content editors.

The Archivoz journal is seeking new members for this collaborative project.

If you would like to become a member please read the criteria below.

Do you want to become a Content Editor?

What are we looking for?

  1. We are looking for professionals or students in the field of archives and records management, with basic knowledge of content management and who are eager to learn.
  2. Experience in other collaborative web projects and expertise in the development of personal blogs will be valued.
  3. The person needs to be familiar with new technologies and Social Media.
  4. Social skills and languages will be valued.

What do we offer?

  1. Incorporation into an international team of professionals from whom you will learn a lot.
  2. Expansion of your network of contacts and participation in a prominent international project of recognized prestige.

(This is a voluntary and altruistic project, none of the members of the team has any financial compensation).

Are you interested?

Get in touch with us through the mail direccion[at]archivoz.es

British Library Qatar Foundation Partnership Programme

In October 2014, the British Library Qatar Foundation Partnership launched the Qatar Digital Library (QDL), an online bilingual portal that provides free access to material from the British Library’s collections.

The portal displays content related to the history and culture of the Gulf and its surroundings, as well as the Library’s Arabic Scientific Manuscripts. Among the collections that we are working on are: the India Office Records on Gulf History (Agencies and Residencies), personal papers, maps, photographs, and manuscripts. The portal is fully bilingual, supporting study in both Arabic and English. At the moment, there are almost one and a half million images of British Library material on the portal, comprising over 14,000 records and over 136 manuscripts, with more content being uploaded every week. In addition, the Digital Library hosts articles from our experts, developed by the British Library team to help contextualise the collections. There are currently over 140 published articles, with more to come.

Digitising and publishing the documents on the QDL requires the work of a wide range of specialists. We are an interdisciplinary team, made up of more than forty professionals, including computer scientists, photographers, conservators, curators, archivists, administrators, translators, and specialist historians. Together we are working to give users of the portal a comparable experience to seeing the original documents in person.

The most obvious and important benefit of digitisation is the increased visibility and access to the collections. Users no longer have to be physically present in the Library’s reading rooms in London, but can now view these records from any corner of the globe, on a number of different devices. Since the portal has been active, users have been accessing the site from all around the world, with the top five countries being the United States, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Oman, and the United Kingdom.

Alongside the digital images, each file is published with a short descriptive catalogue record, created by our team of experts. Cataloguing of this kind allows the Library to better understand and document the nature of the collections themselves, improving its own records and highlighting the importance of the material.

When providing free open access to information online, issues surrounding copyright and data protection must be considered.  On the programme we have a dedicated Rights Clearance team, and the programme works with the Library’s Information Compliance Officer to ensure that we are compliant with current legislation and British Library policy. By firstly determining whether the catalogued material is still within copyright or not, our Rights Clearance team then conduct copyright ownership research into the collection items selected for digitisation, tracing and contacting Rights Holders where possible, such as individuals, companies, publishers, estates and other relevant bodies, working to ensure the correct usage terms are displayed on the portal.

Moreover, there are further challenges on a digitisation project such as this. There can be challenges in scoping the material: its condition, size, the style of handwriting, and the languages in which it is written may all make a given file difficult to read. These issues can in turn have knock-on effects on the time needed for conservation, cataloguing, and digitisation. Assessing the time needed for an item to makes its way from the BL’s secure storage onto the portal is no easy task, and requires clear coordination across all teams. To facilitate this, a workflow with three separate streams has been developed, and is now managed through the use of Microsoft SharePoint. Each team also maintains thorough documentation and guidelines to help ensure the consistency of its work.

We are highly aware of the importance of communicating our work to make sure it reaches new audiences. Among our outreach activities, we promote the portal online through social media and in person through talks and tours of the programme. Many of our specialists also offer presentations at academic and archival conferences, participate in seminars, and write articles and blogs for wider publication. The response of users of the portal is overwhelmingly positive: many researchers and students are using this resource, not only in the UK, but also in the United States and across the Gulf region, and the increased access to this material is allowing for studies of a broader and more comprehensive nature than was previously possible.

Thanks to this project, important historical material from the BL’s collections, some of which had not previously been fully catalogued or studied in depth, is now being disseminated and made available to the general public. The Partnership has just agreed a further three years for this project, until the end of 2021, during which time we plan to make even more material available. We hope our efforts will prove useful to all who access the portal.

For more information please visit Qatar Digital Library and our web in British Library.

This article was originally published in ARC Magazine, a publication of the Archive & Records Association of the UK & Ireland, no. 349, September 2018.

Image: Kitāb na‘t al-ḥayawān كتاب نعت الحيوان [‎208v] (427/534), British Library: Oriental Manuscripts, Or 2784