AERI sponsors several research and infrastructure building initiatives to achieve its goal of stimulating the growth of a new generation of academics in archival and recordkeeping education who are versed in contemporary issues and knowledgeable of the work being conducted by colleagues. These initiatives are the:

Emerging Archival Scholars Program (contact: Kelvin White, University of Oklahoma): A recruitment and outreach scholarship program to encourage minority students at the undergraduate and graduate levels to consider undertaking doctoral education focusing in Archival Studies–a multidisciplinary field that examines the professional, social, cultural, political, and technological imperatives of recordkeeping and remembering in society. The program is designed to introduce students to the nature of doctoral education and the rewards and demands of a research-oriented career, e.g., as a professor, in the archives field. Our goal is to stimulate and begin to nurture the growth of a new and more diverse generation of scholars who are versed in interdisciplinary research that addresses issues in Archival Studies, broadly conceived. Read more about this project here.

Literature Analysis Project (contact: Paul Conway, University of Michigan): “Scoping the Published Archival Research Corpus” (SPARC) is the first international review of the state of published research literature in archival science. The project encompasses research published in a variety of languages in peer-reviewed journals (primarily archival, but also other disciplines if identifiable), while also incorporating selected published research in other formats, including peer-reviewed conferences and book/book chapters. The expanded study involves a distributed effort to collect data and a more sophisticated analysis and presentation of the data in keeping with some of the current methods of bibliometric research. A team of doctoral students, guided by Paul Conway is gathering data from a corpus of archival research literature using a template that the team developed collaboratively. A faculty advisory board is supporting the larger international research project. At AERI 2012 at UCLA, the research team will present the results of the study at a plenary session and foster a discussion on the implications of the research. The team will follow up with a report designed for publication in multiple peer-reviewed journals.

Prospectus for Publishing AERI Proceedings: This document is a report on an investigation by an ad hoc task force of appropriate models for AERI proceedings publications. Please send your comments to Paul Conway and Anne Gilliland.

Grand Challenges (contact: Sue McKemmish, Monash University): Resulting from a plenary at AERI 2011 and workshop at AERI 2012, Sue McKemmish leads a project to draft research and education agendas that addresses grand challenges in Archival Studies.

Journal Ranking (contact: Karen Anderson, University of Mid-Sweden: In 2009, AERI endorsed scholarly and professional journal rankings published by the Australian Research Council. AERI continues to promote the role and development of rankings of archival journals as an important part of the infrastructure necessary for recognition of excellence in scholarship in Archival Studies.

Pluralizing Archival Education (contact: Anne Gilliland, University of California, Los Angeles): More often than not, the archival profession, archival organizations, and archival education programs conceive of diversifying the field in terms of attracting greater numbers of individuals from minority racial and ethnic groups into the profession and ensuring that they are represented in forums such as institutional and professional association committees and councils. The Pluralizing the Archival Curriculum Group maintains that such an approach, while important, overlooks the systemic nature of the problems it seeks to address, and that diversifying the student population without expanding pedagogy and practice perpetuates a lack of awareness and consideration of the perspectives, behaviors, and needs of many different communities.   It addresses three key components of pluralist approaches in curricula and pedagogy:

• identifying ways in which dominant cultural paradigms permeate archival pedagogy, theory, and practice;

• envisioning and exploring alternatives to these paradigms; and

• developing an archival educational framework that can promote the critique of professional and societal norms and include and reflect upon diverse perspectives on archival theory and practice.

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