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Recordkeeping Cultures



Recordkeeping Cultures explores how an understanding of organisational information culture provides the insight necessary for the development and promotion of sound recordkeeping practices.
The book is a fully revised and expanded new edition of the authors' 2014 book Records Management and Information Culture: Tackling the people problem. It details an innovative framework for analysing and assessing information culture, and indicates how to use this knowledge to change behaviour and develop recordkeeping practices that are aligned with the specific characteristics of any workplace.
This framework addresses the widely recognised problem of improving organisation-wide compliance with a records management programme by tackling the different aspects that make up the organisation's information culture. Discussion of topics at each level of the framework includes strategies and guidelines for assessment, followed by suggestions for next steps: appropriate actions and strategies to influence behavioural change.
This new edition has been fully revised and update to greatly enhance the practical application of the information culture concept in both formal and informal recordkeeping environments and contains new chapters on:

  • diagnostic features: genres, workarounds and infrastructure
  • workplace collaboration: how to analyse collaborative practices in organisations (including recordkeeping)
  • education: how to teach information culture concepts and methods in archives and records management graduate programmes.

Archivists, records managers and information technology specialists will find this an invaluable guide to improving their practice and solving the 'people problem' of non-compliance with records management programmes. LIS students taking archives and records management modules will also benefit from the application of theory into practice. Records management and information management educators will find the ideas and approaches discussed in this book useful to add an information culture perspective to their curricula.

1. Background and context 2. The value accorded to records 3. Information preferences 4. Language considerations 5. Information-related competencies 6. Awareness of environmental requirements relating to records 7. Corporate IT governance 8. Trust in recordkeeping systems 9. Genres 10. Workarounds 11. Infrastructure 12. Workplace collaboration 13. Education

Gillian Oliver is Associate Professor of Information Management at Monash University in Australia. Previously she led teaching and research into archives and records at Victoria University of Wellington and the Open Polytechnic of New Zealand. Her research interests focus on data cultures, including the information cultures of workplaces and issues relating to the continuity of digital information, particularly in development contexts. She is the author of four books, including Records Management and Information Culture (2014) and Recordkeeping Informatics for a Networked Age (2018) and is co-editor-in-chief of the journal Archival Science.
Fiorella Foscarini is Associate Professor in the Faculty of Information at the University of Toronto. She holds a PhD in archival science from the University of British Columbia. Before joining academia, she worked as an archivist and a records manager for various institutions, including the European Central Bank and the Province of Bologna. She also taught archival studies at the University of Amsterdam. Fiorella is co-author of Records Management and Information Culture (2014) and co-editor of Engaging with Records and Archives: Histories and Theories (2016). She currently serves as General Editor of Archivaria.

Human factors in recordkeeping - the elephant in the room. This is the book that was waiting to be written. Thanks to Oliver and Foscarini, we no longer have to wait to read it. It comes highly recommended.

Australian Library Journal

Oliver and Foscarini have used their wealth of experience in the countries in which they have lived and worked (th UK, the USA, Canada, NZ, Germany and Italy) to inform this interesting and thought-provoking work which I recommend to practitioners in the information and records management world.

Archives and Records

The authors' aim is twofold: 1) to identify "the messy and difficult issues which are inevitable when we attempt to manage records in organization", and 2) to address those issues. Their practical experience with archives and records management as well as their theoretical knowledge enables them to present theoretical basics and write a handbook for developing records management procedures and practices in organizations...The structure of the book and each chapter is very clear and systematic. The introductory paragraph explains the content of the chapter. Each chapter ends with a summary, a section of next steps, notes and references. Numerous clear and non-intrusive cross-references avoid overburdening the reader and the text with explanations.

Library Review

Oliver and Foscarini have produced a very useful manual for the analysis of a nebulous and often misunderstood concept of 'information culture'. The book's real value is its potential to equip the records manager with a deeper awareness of the constraints and motivators that shape people's attitudes toward information and recordkeeping and thus provide the foundation upon which properly targeted actions and strategies can be formulated.

Archives and Manuscripts

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