Saturday, 27 February 2010

WDYTYA 'Live' - Lunchtime, Day 2

In the same vein as yesterday our stand has been packed from the point that the doors opened. We think that we gave out close to 1,000 leaflets yesterday and today seems likely to surpass that. We're told that there are 7,500 people are here today.

Who Do You Think You Are 'Live' 2010 - Day 2

We're at Who Do You Think You Are 'Live' in Olympia speaking to people about their research and the archival sources that might help them go further. If you're coming to the show stop off and say hello. We're at stand 708.

Wednesday, 24 February 2010

Who Do You Think You Are? Live 2010

This weekend sees the UK's biggest annual genealogy event take place at Olympia in London and CAIS will be there. Who Do You Think You Are? Live takes place on Friday, Saturday and Sunday and CAIS staff will be on hand to discuss research techniques, archival sources and the online courses in Family and Local History offered by CAIS.

The picture above is of our stand last year. This year we're at stand 708. If you see us stop off and say hello.

Monday, 22 February 2010

E-Records Seminar

Centre for Archive and Information Studies, University of Dundee


‘Practical Approaches to Electronic Records: the Academy and Beyond’

Friday, May 21, 2010

University of Dundee

The Centre for Archive and Information Studies at the University of Dundee is pleased to announce a one-day seminar ‘Practical Approaches to Electronic Records: The Academy and Beyond’ to be held on May 21st, 2010. To date, tools for identifying, preserving, and providing access to electronic records have been difficult to implement, particularly in archives or manuscript libraries that do not have access to an extensive computing infrastructure. This seminar seeks to generate discussion and action regarding down-to-earth approaches that any archives—whatever its size or budget—can immediately take to address this problem.

The speakers are at the forefront of current research aiming to facilitate the preservation and access of ‘born digital’ materials. Each will present a thought-provoking assessment of a specific topic or project related to electronic records management. The day’s program will also include facilitated discussions regarding specific steps that your archive—whatever its focus—can use to implement a programme for ‘born digital’ materials.

This seminar is being held in conjunction with a meeting of the Section Bureau of the International Council on Archives, Section on University and Research Institution Archives. As such, attendees will be provided ample opportunity to discuss and compare work that they have done, or wish to do, with ‘born-digital’ materials, among a diverse group of participants.

Cost: £65.00 standard, £35.00 students. Includes lunch and coffee.

To register please complete the form at

Draft programme:

9:30 Registration and coffee

10:00 Introduction: Patricia Whatley, Director, CAIS

Session 1: Programme Assessment and Planning

Chair: Dr Karen Anderson, Mid-Sweden University

10:10 Dr Ian Anderson, Senior Lecturer in New Technologies for the Humanities,
HATII, University of Glasgow,
‘The Archivist is Dead, Long Live the Archivist!’

10.45 Malcolm Todd, Digital Archives Advice Manager, The National Archives, London,
‘Horses for Courses: Scaling our Solutions to Support Implementation, Cost
Effectiveness, and Trust’

11:20 Coffee

11:40 Dr Chris Prom, Fulbright Distinguished Scholar, University of Dundee
‘Building an Electronic Archives Programme on a Shoestring’

12:15 Remarks and Discussion

12:45 Lunch

Session 2: Implementation Tools and Techniques

Chair, Dr Chris Prom, University of Dundee

13:45 Dr Viv Cothey, E-Preservation Archivist, Gloucestershire Archives
‘Implementing Digital Curation in Local Authority Archives’

14:15 Peter Cliff, Oxford University Bodleian Library
‘BEAM: Developing and Implementing Tools to Manage Hybrid Archives’

14:45 Dr Susanne Belovari, Archivist for Reference and Collections, Tufts University
Digital Collections and Archives, Boston
[Title pending]

15:15 Tea

15:30 Final Speaker [to be confirmed]

16:00 Round up remarks and discussion, led by Dr William Maher, University Archivist,
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

16:30 Dr Chris Prom, final conclusions

Monday, 15 February 2010

Rectorial elections.

Last week saw the election of Dundee born Hollywood star Brian Cox as the twelfth Rector of the University of Dundee. In his new role Brian will be following in the footsteps of such luminaries as Sir Peter Ustinov, Stephen Fry and Lorraine Kelly. This year’s rectorial election has been less dramatic than some in the past. The 1980 election was notable for the favourite candidate, Teddy Taylor, pulling out of the race at the last minute when he was selected as the Conservative candidate in the Southend East by-election. The 1992 election produced something of a surprise when Stephen Fry defeated the legendary Scottish Rugby player David Sole, who had been tipped for victory. On the other hand Fry’s re-election in 1995 was the least suspenseful contest in history as no candidate emerged to oppose the comedian who was undoubtedly one of the most popular rectors the University has had to date.

The most interesting rectorial election was probably the 1971 contest which saw Peter Ustinov narrowly secure re-election against a strong challenge from Michael Parkinson. The result was very close and Ustinov was only declared victorious after recounts. However, it was claimed that the initial results had suggested Parkinson had won and it was felt that at least one more recount should have been carried out to validate the result. Perhaps not surprisingly Parkinson's supporters were not satisfied with the declared result and pressure grew for a new poll. The situation was made even more complicated by the fact that the returning officer had refused to accept the nomination of one candidate – a goat named Mervyn. Ultimately, while the University accepted Ustinov’s election, the Students’ Association agreed to conduct a new poll. This opened the very real prospect of there being an official rector recognised by the University Court and a separate unofficial one recognised by the Student’s Association. However in the end Ustinov won the second poll comfortably and an awkward situation was thus avoided. However, the fact that Mervyn was allowed to stand in the second ballot, and polled more votes than the journalist Paul Foot, might suggest that not all students took the office of rector entirely seriously.

Archive Services hold a special collection of records relating to the University’s rectors (RU 293). Details of most rectorial election campaigns since 1968 can be found in the extensive run of student newspapers that are held in the Archives.

Written by Kenneth Baxter

Wednesday, 3 February 2010

Advance notice - E-Records Seminar

We're pleased to be able to give advance notice that the Centre for Archive and Information Studies (CAIS) at the University of Dundee will be hosting an e-records seminar on Friday 21 May 2010: 'Practical Approaches to Electronic Records: the Academy and Beyond'.

The seminar is being jointly organised by Chris Prom, Fullbright Distinguished Scholar and CAIS. The programme will include a session from Chris on some of the early findings from his current research. Colleagues from the UK and overseas have also confirmed their intention to speak. As Chris puts it:
The purpose of the seminar is to consider the results from research and development projects, in order establish how they might inform work with electronic records, using technologies that are generally available today. Within the parameters of this general theme, speakers and attendees will reflect on and discuss current or future outputs from ongoing research which are likely to have practical applications for those tasked with processing electronic records.

The seminar will be held alongside a meeting of the Steering Committee of the International Council on Archives, Section on University and Research Institute Archives, which is also taking place in Dundee in May.

A finalised programme and details on how to register for the seminar will be posted shortly. If you have any questions meantime please contact us at