The Archives and Records Association (ARA) UK & Ireland 2017 annual conference takes place at the Hilton Manchester Deansgate, Manchester, from 30 August to 1 September. The conference is the most significant gathering of several hundred information professionals in records management, archives and archive conservation from the UK and Ireland, as well as from Europe and around the world.
Supported by Premier Sponsor Ancestry and other partners, Preservica, Axiell and Bruynzeel, the conference theme this year is ‘Challenge the Past, Set the Agenda’. Record-keepers of all stripes – from new professionals to seasoned experts – are in the midst of disruptive change as they seek to hold on to traditional, reliable practises, while embracing the challenge posed by the digital revolution. The need to anticipate and manage change and lead the search for solutions has never been more pressing.
The conference programme offers practical insight into the latest in industry standards, innovation and best practice, notably its unique digital preservation stream for managers grappling with the challenge of born-digital records. There are interactive sessions, cross-cutting thinking on a range of other pressing issues in the sector, such as ethics, data protection, trafficking in documentary heritage and access to justice, with keynote speakers and opinion-leaders from across the private, voluntary and public sectors.
Finally, there are sessions on professional development and peer-to-peer networking to help attendees plug in more effectively into the association’s broad and diverse community.
ARA chair Geoff Pick said: “ARA conference is a ‘hot-house’ environment where the records profession as a whole and individuals take ownership of their challenges and get ideas and inspiration to set the agenda in their place of work, research or study. It is the best-value investment in ideas that you can make. Where better to do all this than Manchester? A vibrant city in a region undergoing huge changes of its own and with many exciting examples of innovation, collaboration and joint-working in the records and heritage space.”