FAN Virtual Conversations, 5 to 7 April 2022

FAN Virtual Conversations, 5 to 7 April 2022

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Forum of National Archivists and ICA members are invited to attend the FAN Virtual Conversations (#FANVC) taking place on 5-7 April 2022.

About this event

FAN Virtual Conversations will take place over three days and will include chaired panels and presentations. Representatives of national archives will discuss a wide range of topics relevant to our professional communities, including: developing digitisation programmes, artificial intelligence and digital innovations, resilient records management solutions, shared archival heritage and memory, collaborating on a global scale, and more.

When registering for FAN Virtual Conversations, you will be asked to provide your ICA membership number.

We would like to say a special thanks to our colleagues from 19 countries, 5 continents and close to 30 organisations, who will share their experience and expertise with us!

Please make sure you have your ICA membership number ready to book your place. All ICA membership numbers will be processed and checked before registration is confirmed.

#FANVC will include live interpretation in Spanish and French.

Tuesday 5 April 2022

Time: 12:00 BST

Session: Changing to stay relevant

Duration: approx. 90 mins

Chair: Jeff James, Chief Executive and Keeper, the UK National Archives, President, Forum of National Archivists

Panellists: Leslie Weir, Librarian and Archivist of Canada; Emma de Ramón Acevedo, Directora del Archivo Nacional, Chile; David Fricker, President, International Council on Archives

National Archives and sister institutions have been - or are still - deeply engaged in a transformative process, reflecting on the ways they work and looking at how to better serve audiences, stakeholders and staff. In this informal session, our panel – all leaders of organisations - will discuss their strategic aims, the ways and steps to make meaningful change, and the challenges and opportunities they've experienced and continue to face.


Time: 16:00 BST

Session: The Politics of Digitization: New Technologies on Old Ideologies

Duration: approx. 90 mins

Chair: Emma de Ramón Acevedo, Director National Archive, Chile

Panellists: Avril Belfon, Government Archivist, National Archives of Trinidad and Tobago; Rita Tjien Fooh, Director, Suriname National Archives; Arjan Agema, President of Archives Portal Europe; Stanley Griffin, Deputy Dean, Undergraduate Matters, The University of West Indies; Brice-Isinove Owabira, Directeur, Archives nationales du Congo

The first panel will consider the multi-faceted dynamics, concerns, experiences and ideologies underpinning digitization projects and proposals facing archival institutions in the Caribbean and other postcolonial developing states. Our panellists will discuss how they have navigated the muddy waters of liberal gifts, restrictive agreements, as well as issues of rights, ownership and access. It will be followed by a presentation focused on the preservation of the archives of French Equatorial Africa, a memory shared between the former territories of (French Congo, Gabon, Oubangui-Chari, Fort Lamy) and the former metropolis (France). This project has achieved many objectives and is an example of successful collaboration.

Wednesday 6 April 2022

Time: 12:00 BST

Session title: New technologies to solve old problems

Duration: approx. 90 mins

Chair: Esther Olembe, Director, Cameroon National Archives

Panellists: Yaso Arumugam, Chief Information Officer/Chief Information Security Officer, National Archives of Australia; Saubhagya Malla Pradhanang, Acting Director General, Nepal National Archives; Ole Magnus Andersen, Deputy Director, Danish National Archives; Sylvain Bélanger, Senior Director General and CIO, Library and Archives Canada

Australian National Archives:

Applying AI for the Automated Appraisal - the Australian Experience. This paper will present the outcomes of a $2 million research initiative led by the National Archives of Australia into the potential for AI technologies to automate the Archival Appraisal of complex government data holdings.

Nepal National Archives:

Changes of tool and Technology of Management of Archive in Nepal. This presentation will look at preserving and conserving archival documents with the support of available advance technology along with the traditional technology. The paper also looks at issues and challenges in managing the advance and traditional technologies together. Along with this it also describes current practice to preserve the digital archives.

Danish National Archives:

Large Scale Digitization by Crowdsourcing. Large Scale Digitization by crowdsourcing is a rapidly expanding activity within The Danish National Archives. In 2019 more than 2.5 million pages were digitized by volunteers and published on Archives Online ( This paper argues that the quality of volunteer digitization is on par with professional digitization, and that the empowerment of volunteers, and the evolution of a community with a shared purpose, has a positive impact on their quality of life.

Libraries and Archives Canada (LAC):

Digital transformation in a national archives - a practical application. The digital transformation journey takes many routes, but ensuring a clear approach across the archives will ensure that digital transformation work is relevant to decision makers and the clients over time. Digital transformation cannot survive without proper change management practices, and a user-centered design mindset. LAC will share its experiences on those fronts, to help others in their application of the transformation mindset.


Time: 16:00 BST

Session title: Federating the resources for enhanced access

Duration: approx. 90 mins

Chair: Leslie Weir, Librarian and Archivist of Canada

Panellists: Charles Farrugia, Director, National Archives Malta, President EURBICA; Arjan Agema, President of Archives Portal Europe; Dr Karl Heinz, MAS, ICARUS (International Centre for Archival Research); Vlatka Lemic, Head of Archival Office, University of Zagreb; Zsuzsanna Mikó, Deputy Director-General National Archives of Hungary

The presentations include:

  • European Digital Treasures – Charles Farrugia
  • Archives Portal Europe – Arjan Agema
  • ICARUS platforms (Monasterium, Matricula, Topotheque) – Dr Karl Heinz, MAS

Thursday 7 April 2022

Time: 8:30 BST

Session title: Resilient Records and Archives Management

Duration: approx. 90 mins

Chair: Stephen Clarke, Chief Archivist, e Rua Mahara o te Kāwanatanga, Archives New Zealand

Panellists: Mr Masakazu Nakada, Senior Vice President, National Archives of Japan; Paweł Pietrzyk, General Director, Polish State Archives

Japan National Archives:

As a way of empowering professionals who take responsibilities in management of historical public records and archives, National Archives of Japan (NAJ) has established a certification program for archivists since 2020. The aims of this program are: to establish a profession for supporting proper management of public records and archives which are intellectual resources to be shared by the people, and for assuring preservation and use of them; as well as to secure the reliability and expertise of that profession.

Poland National Archives:

In connection with the development of information technology and applicable Polish law enabling the collection and creation of electronic documentation in public entities, archival materials in electronic form began to appear in the public space, subject to submission to state archives. Polish archives create an ICT system enabling the transfer of such archival materials to state archives, and then securing them, long-term storage and making them available to interested persons.


Time: 12:30 BST

Session title: A collaborative approach for the renewal of a national archival system. The French example

Duration: approx. 120 mins

Chair: Thomas Van de Walle, Directeur adjoint du numérique et de la conservation, Archives nationales (France)

Panellists: Emmanuel Laborde, Directeur du Programme Vitam; Alice Grippon, Directrice de la communication et des partenariats, Programme Vitam; Edouard Vasseur, Professeur, École nationale des chartes; Marion Ville, Chef de projet fonctionnel, Ministère de l'Europe et des Affaires étrangères; Erwann Ramondec, Chef du pôle archivage et pérennisation des données numériques, Ministère de l'Europe et des Affaires étrangères; Nicolas Bel, Chef du projet Archipel, Ministère des Armées

In recent years, France has changed its approach to public digital archive management. All the different protagonists (archives, digitization departments, etc.) have been involved in this development and together have come up with a proposal for a copyright-free, reusable, electronic archiving software development model, which has since been installed in the departments of the French National Archives and widely extended to private partners and local archives. The result is a whole new vision and new processes based on new technologies and new working methods conducive to improvement in both the management and the curation of public digital archives. The time has now come to move this development on to a higher plane!

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