Exploring the essence of records management. Engaging with experts. Proceedings of the 1st Northumbria International Witness Seminar Conference, 4-5th May 2006, Newcastle upon Tyne, UK

Sue Childs, Susan Heaford, Julie McLeod

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Abstract

The 'Witness Seminar' concept comes from oral history research where key participants in an event or activity are brought together in a seminar to discuss the topic as they remember it (see for example http://icbh.ac.uk/icbh/witness/welcome.html). The discussions are taped and transcribed, resulting in a rich data resource for historical research. We have applied the concept to experts reflecting on their experiences and ideas. Our conference comprised a series of seminars on pre-selected topics. Speakers (referred to as witnesses) were invited to share their views and opinions on the seminar topic and to take as their starting point a published article pertinent to the topic. They submitted their written views (witness statements) prior to the event and the people who had agreed to chair the seminars were able to see in advance the collective views. At the event each chairperson had the freedom to facilitate their seminar as they wished, their aim being to generate lively discussion and debate between the speakers and between the speakers and the audience. Each witness was also free to give their statement how they wished. The one rule was that no PowerPoint presentations or overheads were to be used, freeing the witness and the audience from this barrier to two-way communication. The three main seminars explored aspects of the essence of records management, viz.: Embedding records management into business processes; Is records management the management of risk? Who are the records managers? These are issues of current significance to the records profession and the aim was to explore them by involving a broad range of professions in discussion and debate, exchanging views and experience, and reflecting and thinking about the future.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationNewcastle-upon-Tyne
PublisherNorthumbria University
Number of pages224
ISBN (Print)978-1-86135-341-2
Publication statusPublished - 2006

Publication series

NameNorthumbria International Witness Seminar Conference
PublisherNorthumbria University

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