Today’s session provided insights on several archives across the country. Each of the speakers began by describing their respective archives in terms of structure, approach, members, methodology and scope. Questions from the audience largely centred around what it takes to set up an archive, what kind of information and material one needs to be equipped with and what to keep in mind. The value of all material, even the most seemingly insignificant ones, was one crucial point brought up by several archivists as they discussed the use of everything from student yearbooks to balance sheets and small office notes. Methods used to conduct institutional surveys, to compile archival books that serve to visibilise oral histories et cetera, were also brought up. Interestingly, most of the archivists also mentioned the considerable overlap that occurs between archives, as for example, the Godrej Archive which also contains material on recruitments from IIMAhmedabad.

Chat text

00:30:58 Adhish Srivastava: I am Rajmani worked in National Archives of India for 37 years and outreach was my speecialisation

00:32:44 smarika nawani: Hi Aparna,

00:43:50 mousomi: hey! is it possible to share sort of list of all the archives that each speaker is talking about. It is going little too fast for me to note down. Thanks.

00:44:19 Shantanu Majee: great suggestion!

00:44:38 mousomi: maybe a list of websites. If that works. We can refer them later on.

00:44:42 Venkat Srinivasan: All: Speakers are giving a whirlwind tour of 9-10 archives in the country. The order of speakers and their archives is listed in the full schedule here:

00:44:42 Nithyanand Rao: There’s a list here:–Starting-up-an-archive

00:44:54 mousomi: thanks

00:45:06 Shantanu Majee: thank you

00:47:28 satarupa: very interesting.

00:48:10 Swati Chawla: Is anyone live tweeting this? I am posting a few: @ChawlaSwati.

00:53:00 Ranjani Prasad: planning to live tweet too. So we collectively use #IAW2020 ? Thanks for flagging this Swati

00:55:50 Sivapriya: ,

00:57:44 Venkat Srinivasan: 8 Jun 10:30

Chinmay Tumbe (IIM Ahmedabad)

Deepika S (IISc, Bangalore)

Ganeev Dhillon (The Partition Museum, Delhi)

Kishore Satpathy (ISI Kolkata)

Ponnarasu Subramanian (IIT Madras)

Rajarshi Das (Banwarilal Bhalotia College, Asansol)

Shubha Chaudhuri (Archives and Research Centre for Ethnomusicology, AIIS, Delhi)

Siddhi Bhandari / Srijan Mandal (Centre for Public History, Bangalore)

Vrunda Pathare (Godrej Archives, Mumbai)

01:11:57 Kishor Satpathy: The details about the PCMMM&A can be found at :

01:13:03 Swati Chawla: Kishore, that was fascinating! Thanks!

01:19:06 Swati Chawla: Yes, Ranjani, I am tweeting w/ #IAW2020.

01:21:09 Swati Chawla: #AnArchiveIs is the other.

01:23:22 Ranjani Prasad: Maybe we can also use #MilliConsortium as another hashtag? #IAW2020 and #AnArchivels is getting flooded with similar event tweets from across the world. What say?
01:24:28 Swati Chawla: Yes, let me do that from now on. Does Milli have a Twitter handle too?

01:24:40 Maya Dodd: Thank Ranjani..yes indeed

01:25:42 Ranjani Prasad: I don’t think Milli has a twitter handle yet .. but not sure..

01:26:27 Maya Dodd: even questions can use the #MilliConsortium

01:26:29 mousomi: Questions

01:26:36 Maya Dodd: well get a twitter handle soon!

01:27:47 Maya Dodd: hi all..were on a 10 minute break

01:27:52 Maya Dodd: see youy on the other side

01:28:54 Swati Chawla: Okie! See you!

01:29:51 mousomi: 1. Does setting up an archives requires any prior knowledge/skills/tools on the subject (let’s say textile)? 2. How do we go ahead with organizing information that we have or the material around us for the purpose of archiving?

01:38:24 Damrupani Bhattacharyya: how to set an archive in local level?

01:43:22 satarupa: To set up an archive translation of oral documents of different languages into English or Hindi necessary ?

01:43:57 Swati Chawla: How do we make decisions about where to house digital archives? Both proprietary questions and also whether we should house them on/ through our institutions or try to raise funds independently?

01:45:34 Shubham Roy Choudhury: When does someone’s personal collection of materials become an “archive”? Are there any standard definitions and what are the processes involved?

01:45:57 Jasmine James Cortez: When conducting survey about the institution prior the setting up of archives, what questions should be included in the survey? Can you give us examples. Thank you.

01:46:16 Anish Vanaik: 1. At the early stages how much concentration should there be on meta-data and filing procedures compared to collecting material and building up a set of materials.

  1. What are the pitfalls historians who are starting an archive should be looking out for? What were the most useful books to read according to the various archivists in the initial stages, about setting up an archive and archiving in general?

01:47:53 mousomi: thanks. That answers my question.

01:53:45 Swati Chawla: Hi Spandana! Haven’t seen you since Charlottesville! So good to see you here!

01:54:01 Swati Chawla: Oops, sorry, this was supposed to be a private message. Apologies.

01:56:36 The IFA Archive team - Spandana: Hey Swati! Thanks! Lovely to see you too! Let’s chat up later. :-)

02:00:11 Milli Network: The pedagogy panel shall also be sharing these and more: Lesson Plans to incorporate South Asian American Digital Archives(SAADA) in the classroom

Teaching with Digital Archives in the First Year Writing Classroom

From Page to Screen to Back Again: Archives Centered Pedagogy for the 21st Century Writing Classroom

Enoch, Jessica, and Pamela VanHaitsma. 2015. “Archival Literacy: Reading the Rhetoric of Digital Archives in the Undergraduate Classroom.” College Composition and Communication 67, no. 2 (December): 216–242.

Hayden, Wendy. 2015. “‘Gifts of the Archives: A Pedagogy for Undergraduate Research.” College Composition and Communication 66, no. 3 (February): 402–426.

Lerner, Neal. 2009. “Archival Research as a Social Process.” In Working in the Archives: Practical Research Methods for Rhetoric and Composition, edited by Alexis E. Ramsey, Wendy B. Sharer, Barbara L’Eplattenier, & Lisa S. Mastrangelo, 195–205. Carbondale, IL: Southern Illinois University Press.

Norcia, Megan A. 2008. “Out of the Ivory T

02:00:56 Aparna Vaidik: Terry cook, Canadian Historical Review, Archive if a Foreign Place

Susan Sontag, On Photography, 1973

02:01:12 Aparna Vaidik: [It was Terry Cook, not Tim Cook]

02:01:13 Milli Network:

02:02:37 ishaq: The Archive - Charles Merewether

02:03:26 Milli Network: Sritama from the pedagogy panel [upcoming this Sunday] has shared some of these @

02:03:39 Anjali: While setting up an Institutional archive, in addition to the existing structure which in our case comprises mostly of administrative documents, what other structures or fields ought to be included?

02:04:14 Ramani Srinivasan: Several institutions/organisations have no idea about setting up an archive or know the importance of setting up one. Can this group go about identifying such organisations and help them setting it up?

02:04:39 Swati Chawla: Thanks, Venkat, that’s very helpful!

02:06:28 Swati Chawla: Thanks, Vrunda!

02:06:33 ishaq: How do we deal with the copywrights when it comes to community archives? I mean, what are all the clauses that must be included in the document?

02:08:37 Milli Network: Hi tune in for more on this: 12 Jun 10:30 // 11:45 - 13:30 Archiving Community Knowledge Faisal Rehman (Keystone Foundation, Kotagiri) Heather Goodall (University of Technology, Sydney) Pallav Thudgar (Muskaan, Bhopal) Ranjani Prasad (Keystone Foundation, Kotagiri) Rita Bannerjee (Green Hub, Tezpur) Surajit Sarkar (Centre for Community Knowledge, Ambedkar University Delhi) TB Dinesh (Janastu) 02:12:02 Venkat Srinivasan: @Ishaq: There will be a detailed session on copyright and privacy: June 11, 11:45am.

02:13:06 Redmi: As IIT M has initiated the process of establishing archive at institutional level under Prof.Roland, Ponnarasu and others, I would suggest them that, kindly take this process little extended to establish archives at College level, atleast one archive for a region so that student and other stakeholders will mutually benefit. The regional local oral history can be recorded and maintained there. Hope the govt will support such initiative.

02:13:22 Swati Chawla: Thanks, Farah!

02:13:27 Jasmine James Cortez: Thank you, Mr. Ponnarasu and Mr. Roland! Very helpful insight.

02:15:13 Venkat Srinivasan: @Ramani: Thanks for this. What you ask is exactly one of the goals of a consortium like Milli: to nurture archives and help get things moving along.

02:16:36 Hari: A reflection on archiving contemporary science:

02:16:39 Swati Chawla: Follow up: Can anyone speak from the experience of archiving born digital materials, particularly proprietary concerns?

02:17:00 yamaha: What’s the state-of-the-art in software tools/frameworks for digital archives?

02:17:06 Swati Chawla: Is anyone compiling the the reading recommendations?

02:17:48 Aparna Vaidik: I will compile and can send it to milli network to share on their website

02:18:01 Swati Chawla: Thanks, Aparna!

02:21:55 Rajmani: Why professional Archivists are not being associated with the Institutional Archives. Many experienced Archivists are ready to guide them .

02:22:02 Anjali: Such insightful responses.. Thank you so much.

02:22:32 Rajmani: Nice to see Shivani Bajapai interacting

02:24:04 Rajmani: Appraisal of the content is very essential

02:26:36 AR: follow up question to Roland’s point about oral history and casting the net at various levels of an institution – how to negotiate the institution admin’s unwillingness to record voices/records of dissension within? For eg. workers’ union protests within the inst., whether successful (therefore coopted) or not

02:27:46 Rajmani: What kind of budget is allocated to Institutional Archives in a financial year

02:28:25 ajith: What to do when clients have problems in signing the transfer form, they are scared of language ? how to do deal with this issue

02:31:14 Chinmay Tumbe: “Do your stuff and let institutions figure it out” is the dialogue of the day, Venkat.

02:32:03 Abdul Moid: Is it good idea to create an archival blog on personal level?

02:34:55 AR: thank you for your responses!

02:35:24 Abdul Moid: around where I live

02:37:07 Ramani Srinivasan: Thanks Venkat for that. Do we have a list of institutions/organizations in India that have an archive?

02:38:29 Venkat Srinivasan: @Ramani: I am sure there are others, but I really like Chinmay’s growing list here:

02:38:51 Maya Dodd: Indeed.. The pedagogy panel will elaborate more on the teaching and learning aspects.. June 14 please…and we hope to share the list of materials generated for all to see. Perhaps we can add the list of archives to that list also since it’ll be at the end of this entire week!

02:39:43 Maya Dodd: For now am sharing a very diverse list, much like Chinmay’s (which is super fab)

02:40:47 Rajmani: Great Aparana

02:42:13 Venkat Srinivasan: @yamaha (Q: “What’s the state-of-the-art in software tools/frameworks for digital archives?”): There are so many at this point. But if you are in the field, I always recommend that people check out Ashley Blewer’s phenomenol collection of almost every digital framework out there:

02:43:16 Anish Vanaik: Thanks all for the very thoughtful and practical responses. This has been a very rewarding session

02:43:25 Venkat Srinivasan: Since we are talking about pandemics, if folks are generally interested in Archives and Crises, tune in on Jun 12, 6pm.

02:44:41 Swati Chawla: Thanks, everyone!

02:46:06 Malini Krishnankutty: I came in late. Will participants get access to the recording?

02:46:12 Aparna Vaidik: Compiled Weblinks and Readings shared on the chat:

02:46:27 Rajmani: From Me to rashmi: (Privately) 12:49 PM I agree with Aparna as varied Archives have to I come on digital platform to help scholars

02:47:36 yamaha: Thanks Venkat. That’s an excellent compilation of resources

02:49:13 Aparna Vaidik: This is the compilation of all the weblink and readings shared on the chat

02:49:37 Venkat Srinivasan: @Yamaha: The Archives at NCBS uses ArchivesSpace for its finding aids (free, open source software). Azim Premji University uses AtoM (free, open source). I recommend both. The digital object interface for the Archives at NCBS at this point is on a simple Drupal platform. However, it will likely shift to a proper ‘digital asset management system’. We are exploring Islandora, Samvera, AtoM. There’s another interesting new one called Archipelago. Again, Ashley Blewer’s link above summarizes each of these.

02:49:49 AR: Hi Aparna, can you pls share the link again? It didn’t come through

02:50:08 Aparna Vaidik: Sending again

02:51:32 Maya Dodd: Thanks it now;)

02:53:14 Aparna Vaidik: Archives and Crises, tune in on Jun 12, 6pm.

02:53:18 Aparna Vaidik: 12 Jun 10:30 // 11:45 - 13:30 Archiving Community Knowledge Faisal Rehman (Keystone Foundation, Kotagiri) Heather Goodall (University of Technology, Sydney) Pallav Thudgar (Muskaan, Bhopal) Ranjani Prasad (Keystone Foundation, Kotagiri) Rita Bannerjee (Green Hub, Tezpur) Surajit Sarkar (Centre for Community Knowledge, Ambedkar University Delhi) TB Dinesh (Janastu)

02:54:04 Rajmani: It is nice that some young people have taken this initiative . I request that some experienced professional Archivists may also be included in the discussin.

02:55:30 Aparna Vaidik: here will be a detailed session on copyright and privacy: June 11, 11:45am.

02:57:54 Maya Dodd: This is awesome.. Thankyou Mr. Rajmani ;)_

02:58:36 Maya Dodd:

02:59:17 Rajmani:

03:00:18 Malini Krishnankutty: Are there standard formats for transfer of material. Where can one access these?

03:02:40 Venkat Srinivasan: @Malini: One example, if it is useful to you. The Archives at NCBS is revamping its sign-off forms. With that caveat out of the way, you can access all early draft sign-off forms under its Resources section on the About page:

03:02:58 Malini Krishnankutty: Thanks!

03:03:26 ajith: thank your very good inputs

03:03:50 ajith: Should all these points added in the form?

03:05:30 sneha: Just a quick clarification - is this only related to sharing material or transfer of rights as well? Both may need to be addressed as well, in case one would like to re-use/reshare material from the as well.

03:06:44 Malini Krishnankutty: Am very new to archiving- but just beginning a journey of trying to set up an Archive on Urban Planning in India- will reach out to milli - great to know about this initiative

03:08:37 The IFA Archive team - Spandana: Hi Sneha, this is Spandana. Thank you for bringing this up. For my part, I was talking about both. I did not go into details since there is not much time. I hope the copyright session will address both these points.

03:10:46 satarupa: Thank you so much for answering the question.

03:12:19 sneha: Thanks Spandana!

03:14:18 Dipika Makwana: thanks. all sessions were very informative, thanks @Venkat Srinivasan

03:15:28 dinesh: @v. whats not an archive? - inputs for AI and algo but we cant imagine an archivist?

03:18:03 Venkat Srinivasan: @dinesh: archives need structure, and shine light on the context and process of <individual/community/corporation/family/movement/theme…>. What an archive looks like is quite diverse today, as it should be. But one of my rules of thumb about whether something starts to resemble an archive that might last is: when you are able to see material described well, see its relation to the <individual/community…> and have the ability to constantly revisit it to catapult it into a variety of future narratives.

03:18:14 Venkat Srinivasan: @dinesh: of course, this is just my point of view :)

03:20:13 Maya Dodd: Indeed….when a collection starts to be curated into woven stories it becomes more narrative….and an archive narrates!

03:22:35 dinesh: Roland talks of provenance. Google will do provenance to the fine details :)

03:22:40 Swati Chawla: I missed the MILLI intro.

03:22:50 Swati Chawla: Could you tell us briefly again? :-)

03:23:03 Aparna Vaidik: Venkat could you talk about Milli

03:23:28 Ashutosh Potdar: thank you.

03:23:36 Kishor Satpathy: Thanks

03:24:07 bhanu:

03:24:38 dinesh:

03:25:55 Rajmani: I will be happy to join

03:26:29 Venkat Srinivasan: @Rajmani: could you share your email address?

03:27:43 The IFA Archive team - Spandana: We are also interested in joining milli. @Venkat, please let us know the procedure. :-) Thanks!

03:28:17 Rushabh: Madam wait

03:28:41 Rushabh: I am copying links from chats

03:28:44 Rushabh: for reference

03:28:52 Aparna Vaidik: I sent all the links

03:29:07 Rushabh: Ohk

03:29:17 Aparna Vaidik: Please use this document. It has all the links and references