World Conference 2022

Recordings Vol.4

World Conference 2022

The FIAT/IFTA World Conference 2022 was held in Cape Town, South Africa. It was FIAT/IFTA’s first conference in the African continent and the organisation’s first in-person event since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic.

To celebrate a World Conference to remember, we will be publishing recordings from a curated selection of the sessions from Cape Town. New videos will be available every Friday until the start of the FIAT/IFTA World Conference 2023.

This week’s presentations were given by Karen du Toit from SABC, titled “The legacy we leave behind as archivists”, and by Maria Drabczyk (Centrum Cyfrowe), Johan Oomen (Netherlands Institute for Sound and Vision) & Marco Rendina (Cinecittà – Archivio Luce) titled “Towards community-driven digital cultural heritage with a purpose: In Focus: Audiovisual Archives”.

The legacy we leave behind as archivists

by Karen du Toit


The legacy we leave behind as archivists

The SABC Radio Archive preserve the audio archives for the South African Broadcasting Corporation, the national public broadcaster in South Africa. SABC has 19 radio stations, and legacy material, of which the audio needs to be preserved for future generations. We have a large collection of analogue audio carriers, which still need to be digitised, but since 2012 we have been preserving the audio digitally on servers. The radio collection in the SABC Radio Archives spans more than one hundred years. A future Enterprise Digital Library (EDL) is in the pipeline, which will encompass a MAM system for all the archives in the SABC.

2020 brought its own challenges to the SABC Archives. It led to thoughts about the legacy we, as each archivist, leave behind in an archive. It is perhaps a tongue-in-cheek look at the challenges encountered searching for material, but it is also a reminder to all of us, myself included, to think about the legacy you personally leave behind. The programmes you choose to catalogue, the programmes you leave on the backlog shelf, the metadata you use, your own personal filter when cataloguing, and the gaps you leave when you are busy with a project. These are but a few examples, and I hope to discuss them with the conferencegoers and invite them to share their own.

As archivists, we would all like to get the following mention as Margaret C. Norton, an archivist instrumental in the archival profession in the 1940s and 50s: “[her] most important contributions to the archival profession, she gave a sense of respect and professionalism that others had been trying to give but had not had her wide reach. She was crucial in establishing the legitimacy of the archival profession in its formative years in the United States.”

Karen du Toit, Sectional Lead: SABC Radio Archives

Audio Archivist | Librarian

Towards community-driven digital cultural heritage with a purpose: In Focus: Audiovisual Archives

by Maria Drabczyk, Johan Oomen & Marco Rendina

Centrum Cyfrowe, Netherlands Institute for Sound and Vision & Cinecittà – Archivio Luce

Towards community-driven digital cultural heritage with a purpose: In Focus: Audiovisual Archives

For over two decades, the cultural heritage sector has been going through the process of digital transition which has been accompanied by major change in how people perceive the role of culture and of the sector. Cultural heritage institutions have been observing how differently people interact with heritage (both on site and online) turning from audience into active creators. Increasingly heritage institutions have started to redefine their role and mission, taking into account the impact they have in many areas of social life. Audiovisual archives are no exception; they too are in the same strategic transition phase, during which they need to consider multiple aspects of their value, generating not only economic but also social and innovation impact.

There is a need for new policies for the archives, empowering active participation and community engagement, accelerating reuse of AV collections and data while considering ethical concerns and copyright challenges. Given this, a systemic and participatory approach that supports different forms of value creation should be put at the heart of the sector’s digital strategy.

This panel discussion will bring together experts from the audiovisual community invited to address these issues by commenting on newly released policy recommendations of the inDICEs project – a Horizon 2020 research project that aims to empower policy-makers in the cultural and creative industries to fully understand the social and economic impact of digitisation in their sectors and address the need for innovative (re)use of cultural assets.

Various aspects will be addressed, such as: what elements are needed to make audiovisual archives flourish and fulfil their mission in the digital realm? How to make them genuinly connect to their audiences and best demonstrate the value of their digital collections? Finally, how to address reuse of audiovisual assets and value chains that this reuse enables for communities?

Maria Drabczyk, Head of Policy and Advocacy, Johan Oomen, Research Director & Marco Rendina, International Projects Coordinator

Maria Drabczyk is Member of the Board and Head of policy and advocacy at Centrum Cyfrowe in Warsaw. She is a sociologist, researcher and manager of cultural projects interested in the social value of cultural heritage institutions and supporting both cultural and educational sectors in shaping their, user-focused, digital strategies. She is a board member of the EUscreen Foundation, member of the Europeana Association Members Council and Chair of the FIAT/IFTA Value, Use and Copyright Commission. In the past, she acted as a project manager at the National Film Archive –Audiovisual Institute (FINA) in charge of international cooperation, mostly focused on access and creative re-use of archival collections. She co-created a crowdfunding site for culture and worked as an international relations expert at the Polish Ministry of Culture and National Heritage.

Johan Oomen is Head of Research and Heritage Services at the Netherlands Institute for Sound and Vision and a researcher at the User-Centric Data Science group of the VU University Amsterdam. Throughout his practice, Oomen works on initiatives that focus on providing access to digital heritage. Next to projects at Sound and Vision, Oomen works on international collaborative projects such as AI4MEDIA, Europeana XX, CLARIAH, and ReTV. He has a background in information science, media studies and computer science, and his current research focuses on exploring the potential of digital cultural heritage in the wider Cultural and Creative Industries. He is a board member of the Europeana Foundation, the EUscreen Foundation and the PublicSpaces Foundation.

Marco Rendina is senior consultant in charge of international projects at Istituto Luce – Cinecittà. Marco has been working for two decades with museums, archives and libraries across Europe, supporting them in their digital transformation, advocating for open access, gaining extensive experience in Digital Libraries design and implementation and fostering innovation in the cultural heritage sector in Europe. He is a member of the Board of Directors in various international cultural heritage organisations and networks, like the European Fashion Heritage Association, the Jewish Heritage Network and the EUscreen Foundation.

He has been appointed Chair of the Europeana Aggregators Forum from 2018 to 2021, and he is currently a member of the Advisory Board of the Europeana Foundation.