An Overview of the A*CENSUS Project



A*CENSUS Working Group Breaks New Ground

The working group charged with developing and conducting a comprehensive nationwide census of the archival profession, A*CENSUS, began deliberations about the scope and nature of this unprecedented collaborative effort during its first meeting in Chicago, November 14–16. Funded by the Institute for Museum and Library Services (IMLS), A*CENSUS (Archival Census and Education Needs Survey in the U.S.) seeks to define the universe of archivists currently in the workforce, determine the knowledge and skills they need to do their jobs now and in the future, and provide graduate and continuing education programs with baseline data to support recruitment and training of new archivists.

A broad range of archival interests are represented within the working group, including graduate archival education programs, continuing education programs, and the following national and regional organizations: Academy of Certified Archivists, Association of Moving Image Archivists, Conference of Inter-Mountain Archivists, Council of State Historical Records Coordinators, Historically Black Colleges and Universities, Mid-Atlantic Regional Archives Conference, Midwest Archives Conference, National Archives and Records Administration / Modern Archives Institute, National Association of Government Archives and Records Administrators, New England Archivists, Northwest Archivists, Inc., Rare Books and Manuscripts Section of the Association of College and Research Libraries, Society of American Archivists, Society of American Archivists Diversity Committee, Society of California Archivists, and Society of Southwest Archivists.

The goal of A*CENSUS is to reach everyone in the United States who works with archival materials. The project will seek active participation from all archival associations in the U.S., as well as many organizations serving closely allied fields whose members bear significant responsibility for historical records, including librarians, local historians, records managers, and museum curators.

Current plans call for the census to occur during the spring of 2004, with preliminary reports available by the time of the Society of American Archivists annual meeting in Boston in August. Stay tuned to www.archivists.org/a-census for more information about the A*CENSUS project and when you can expect to receive your survey.


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