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Archiving Email Symposium

Co-hosted by the Library of Congress and the National Archives and Records Administration

June 2-3, 2015

Montpelier Room, 6th Floor
Library of Congress, James Madison Building
101 Independence Ave. SE
Washington, DC 20540

As memory institutions increasingly process born-digital collections, one thing is clear: processing digital collections increasingly involves working with large quantities of complex email messages and their attachments. Workflows, toolsets and policies for accessing and preserving email archives are emergent and changeable.

In the face of these challenges, the Library and NARA are convening a symposium of practitioners on Tuesday, June 2, who are directly working with email archives.  This day-long meeting will bring together representatives of various federal agencies, academic and research libraries, technologists, curators, archivists and records managers working on collecting and preserving email to discuss challenges and solutions on four topic tracks: technical challenges, archival processing, records management and policy/guidelines development.

Alongside the Symposium, on Wednesday, June 3, 8:30-noon, we hosted an informal workshop of a select group of participants where we’ll sketch out use cases to better define the gaps in our tools, processes and polices for archiving email collections based on discussions from the first day. An agenda and results from the workshop are also included in the resources below.


Twitter hashtag: #ArchEmail

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

8:30-9:00 Registration and packet pick-up
9:00 – 9:30

Welcoming Remarks

Mark Sweeney, Associate Librarian for Library Services, Library of Congress

Paul Wester, Chief Records Officer of the US Government, National Archives and Records Administration

Technical Perspective: Institutional Approaches to Processing and Archiving Email

Ricc Ferrante, Information Technology Archivist and Director of Digital Services, and Lynda Schmitz Fuhrig, Electronic Records Archivist, Smithsonian Institution Archives (PDF, 1.80MB)

Jaime Schumacher, Director of Scholarly Communications, University Libraries, Northern Illinois University, and co-PI, Digital POWRR Project (PDF, 472KB)

Kathy Jordan, Digital Initiatives and Web Services Manager, Library of Virginia (Prezi)

10:30-11:00 Break

Archival Perspective: Practical Approaches to Accessioning and Processing Email

Roger Christman, Senior State Records Archivist, Library of Virginia (PDF, 1.03MB)

Aprille Cooke McKay, Lead Archivist for University Collections Development,  University of Michigan (PDF, 920KB)

Dorothy Waugh, Digital Archives Project Archivist, Emory University (PDF, 1.28MB)

12:00-1:15 Lunch on your own

Records Management Perspective: Challenges of “Email as a Record”

Lisa Haralampus, Director, Federal Records Management Policy, Office of the Chief Records Officer for the U.S. Government - Capstone approach

Deborah Armentrout, Agency Records Officer, Nuclear Regulatory Commission

Jeanette Plante, Director, Office of Records Management Policy, Department of Justice (PDF, 272KB)

Edwin McCeney, Departmental Records Officer, Department of the Interior


Policy and Guidelines Development Perspective:

David Kirsch, Associate Professor, Robert H. Smith School of Business, and Jyothi Vinjumur, PhD student,  University of Maryland  "Archiving and Accessing Email from Failed Companies" (PDF, 6.12MB)

Anthony Cocciolo, Ed.D., Associate Professor, Pratt Institute, School of Information and Library Science “Building Email Archives in an Art Museum Context: Policy and Appraisal Implications”(PDF, 584KB)

Kenneth Hawkins, Ph.D, Digital Preservation Division, National Archives and Records Administration “Archiving Email under the Presidential Records Act”(PDF, 3.66MB)

Library of Congress approaches “5 minute lightning talks” : Kathleen O’Neill and Margaret McAleer, Manuscripts Division; and Christopher Hartten, Music Division  
3:15-3:45 Break

Closing Speaker and Wrap-up

Chris Prom, Assistant University Archivist and Assistant Professor of Library Administration, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign
5:00 Close-out Day 1

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Archiving Email Symposium Workshop

8:30-9:00 Registration and packet pick-up
9:00 – 9:10

Review agenda, workshop, structure


Round Robin Introductions

Participant introductions (30 second intros)

Each participant say their name, organization, share one take away from the day one symposium

Brainstorm Session

Participants will break into small groups to reflect the four topic tracks identified in day one: technical, archival, records management, policy/guidelines development

Participants will identify challenges and issues related to the topic track (10-15 mins for each track, rotate)

Before and/or during the break, participants will “select” or “vote” on which they think are their top 2 priorities in each track



Report Outs, Next Steps, Chart for future work
The goal of this group discussion is to work toward specific next steps.

Participants will report out from the brainstorm session rotations, identifying the top 2-3 priority challenges or issues in each topic track. (10 mins)

Participants will clarify statements of the problem for a particular track, which could include an articulation of next step for use cases (30 mins)

Participants will discuss a chart for future work, identifying leads for use case (10 mins)

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