2020 conference

Save the Date and Call for Papers: Business Archives Council Conference: 

'Do The Right Thing: Inclusivity, Equity and Anti-Racism within Business Archives'

The Business Archives Council is pleased to announce a call for participation for its 2020 conference ‘Do The Right Thing: Inclusivity, Equity and Anti-Racism within Business Archives’ to be held on 17th and 18th November 2020 virtually via Zoom, timings tbc.

Issues surrounding inclusivity and diversity have been given renewed focus in the past year, particularly given global Black Lives Matter protests following the deaths of Black people in the United States by police departments. These protests have, in turn, affected, informed and furthered conversations within the museums, heritage and arts sectors around the role of these organisations’ in combating racism, the ongoing impact and legacies of colonisation, as well as the systemic exclusion of different voices within these sectors, from workforce development to collections and their interpretation.

These are vital conversations to be had throughout the archives sector, but particularly pertinent within business archives. Many business archivists are based within organisations which have direct links to enslavement and colonialism and can find themselves at odds with internal colleagues if they are seen to draw external scrutiny to this. At the same time, we know that both archives and archivists are not neutral, and that there is great possibility within our collections and ourselves to effect progressive and sustainable change.

We welcome contributions about, but not limited to the following themes:

  • Post-colonial and decolonial approaches to business archives;
  • The role of archives within movements for social justice and in supporting alternative curricula;
  • Development of guidelines and approaches for equity and inclusion within the archives sector, including protocols regarding cataloguing;
  • Reparative histories and institutional accountability through business archives; and
  • Alternative entry routes to the recordkeeping profession and workforce diversification.

We hope that this conference will provide a productive space to advance the conversation on structural inequities and racism within the archives and business archives sectors and provide participants with tangible actions and ideas of how to promote inclusivity and anti-racism within their collections and organisations.

Please submit proposals to conference@businessarchivescouncil.org.uk, stating your name, institution (if applicable), type of session proposed and abstract (less than 250 words). Honorariums may be offered in specific circumstances.

The deadline for responses is 1st October 2020 and applicants will be informed w/c 19th October 2020 if they have been successful.

For an informal chat or to discuss a proposal, please contact Meg Venter, conference coordinator, at meg.venter@postalmuseum.org