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August 11, 2015 / Council of State Archivists

Upcoming Webinar for SHRAB Coordinators and Board Members: August 27th, 3 pm Eastern

August 27th Webinar Seeks SHRAB Member Input for NHPRC Strategic Plan

Sponsored by CoSA
3 – 4 pm Eastern

SHRAB Coordinators:  Please circulate this email to your SHRAB board members. Thank you!

SHRAB members and coordinators are invited to join Kathleen Williams, NHPRC Executive Director, and Dan Stokes, Director of State Programs, in a special webcast conversation about the future of the SHRAB program.  Your ideas, information and concerns are needed and welcome!

As NHPRC gathers input on all of its programs and services for its next strategic plan, the role of the SHRABs is a key element.  Now in its 40th year, the SHRAB program has provided state and territorial archives with critical support on a variety of fronts.  What does its future look like?  Kathleen and Dan want to hear from you!

Because the deadline at NHPRC for stakeholder input is September 15th, CoSA determined that a webinar focused solely on the SHRABs is in order this month.

To reserve your place for this webinar, please register here by Wednesday, August 26th.

NHPRC Planning Goals

The preliminary strategic planning goals have been identified.  They are:

1.  Expand access to the nation’s historical records.

The primary role of the Commission is to provide opportunities for the American people to discover and use records that increase understanding of our democracy, history, and culture. To that end, the National Archives funds projects that publish collections of historical records—including documentary editions in print and online versions and digital editions online. Several challenges have arisen during this transitional period, and the Commission will use its regular programming and seek new funding to:

  • Support multiple levels of access leading to online access and to open access
  • Promote the development and use of standards for online publishing of collections
  • Identify historically significant collections in need of a national initiative for full online access
  • Partner with and support collaborative and collective projects for long-term sustainability of digital resources

2.  Engage the American people in preserving the American record.

A key challenge ahead is to help grantees engage directly with people in their communities and online. Along with efforts for greater public engagement, archives are encouraging people to learn critical thinking skills and basic research techniques when seeking and using historical records in both analog and digital formats. The National Archives has enlisted Citizen Archivists in crowdsourcing, and the Commission will seek to broaden that practice and to:

  • Encourage new organizational methods for crowdsourcing for historical records
  • Promote educational/training efforts for Citizen Archivists at other archives
  • Collaborate with state boards on local & statewide grassroots projects

3.  Provide leadership through the National Archives.

The National Archives plays a key national leadership role in developing and promoting best practices, model programs, and partnerships among the nation’s vast network of archives and documentary editing projects.  Through the Commission, the National Archives seeks to:

  • Build state partnerships around key needs, such as electronic records management
  • Continue to support professional development opportunities for archivists and documentary editors
  • Fund research, development, & dissemination of best practices
  • Collaborate with other funders on initiatives and programs

4.  Adapt Commission practices to extend its reach and leverage.

The Commission seeks to encourage a more inclusive pool of applicants that represents the rich diversity of America’s culture and history. To that end, it will seek ways to demonstrate the public impact of its programming and to improve its internal management processes to:

  • Streamline its application and review processes
  • Clarify language re “national significance” to encourage a wider pool of applicants
  • Strengthen the connection of its grants program to the imprimatur of the National Archives

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