RLG Programs at SAA 2008

August 26-30, 2008
San Francisco

RLG Programs staff led the following meetings during " ARCHIVES 2008: Archival R/Evolution & Identities," The Society of American Archivists (SAA) 72nd Annual Meeting, August 26-30 at the Hilton San Francisco.

Of particular interest is the EAD@10 Symposium, sponsored by RLG Programs and SAA to celebrate the 10th birthday of EAD on Sunday, August 31, 2008. The day featured reports from European speakers on how EAD has been implemented in their countries. In addition, a group of innovative archivists presented their forward thinking (and provocative) views about what the next 10 years may bring. The meeting agenda is available below, and symposium proceedings are available on the SAA EAD@10 Web page.

Wednesday, August 27

Time Meeting
5:30–7:30 p.m.

RLG Programs Roundtable

Jackie Dooley, UC Irvine
Tom Knoles, American Antiquarian Society

RLG Programs staff presented information on current initiatives focused on archives, including bringing archival materials into the mass digitization milieu, Library-Archives-Museums service relationships, and participating in the development of Encoded Archival Context (EAC). We also discussed other ways in which RLG Programs and OCLC might benefit the archives community, and then wrapped up by talking about the future of the Roundtable.

The Roundtable agenda included:

  1. Presentation: "WorldCat Local and archives," by Matt Goldner, Executive Director, OCLC End-User Services
  2. RLG Programs report: what's coming up and what is already available, by Ricky Erway, Jennifer Schaffner and Karen Smith-Yoshimura
  3. Topics for discussion from community interest: look for a call for topics on the list, or contact Jackie Dooley for more information
  4. Discussion: RLG/OCLC future directions for the Roundtable, by Tom Knoles and Jackie Dooley
After the Roundtable, RLG Programs partners were invited for cocktails nearby.

Contact: Jennifer Schaffner

Thursday, August 28

Time Meeting

8:30–10:30 a.m. 

"We're Not the Destination, We're the Journey": Revealing Archival Collections at the Web's Surface

Although researchers value the description and organization given archival collections, they dislike having to consult many specialized websites to find resources. Our speakers addressed the impacts on researchers of changes in description and delivery of images and information. Grants have resulted in expensive but little-used Web sites. The rest of our collections remain largely invisible. We must think beyond specifically designed websites to find where researchers work and ensure that our materials are discoverable in those locations.


  • Jennifer Schaffner (Chair & Commentator)
    Program Officer
    OCLC Programs and Research
    Digitization Matters and Shifting Gears Redux
  • Lena Zentall
    California Digital Library
  • Helena Zinkham
    Acting Chief, Prints & Photos
    The Library of Congress

Contact: Jennifer Schaffner

2:00–4:30 p.m. 

You Say You Want a Revolution...: Combining Archives, Museums and Libraries

What happens when you combine archivists, librarians, and museum curators into a single work group? Core identities and processes are challenged as professional boundaries are erased and redefined. The questions of who "we" are, what the fundamental boundaries of the profession are, where we are going, and how we are going to make it arise as the result of such a reorganization. Learn from the experiences of institutions in such a state of r/evolution.


  • Matthew Heiss
    LDS Church History Library and Archives
    "You Say You Want a Revolution": Combining Archives, Libraries and Museums
  • Michael J. Fox
    Deputy Director
    Minnesota Historical Society
    How Do You Spell Synergy?
  • Steven L. Olsen
    LDS Church History Library and Archives
    "Both Sides Now": The "Something Lost" and "Something Gained" in Museum, Library, and Archives Collaboration
  • Ricky Erway
    Program Officer
    OCLC Programs and Research

Contact: Ricky Erway

For more information, see the complete SAA conference schedule online.

Sunday, August 31

Time Meeting
9:00 a.m. –4:30 p.m.

EAD @ 10: Symposium on the 10th Anniversary of Encoded Archival Description

The symposium proceedings, including PowerPoint presentations and audio files (in MP3 format), are now available on the SAA Web site. More material will be made available in the near future, including edited versions of the papers presented at the symposium.

1998 was a great year that saw the introduction of Viagra, the iMac, and Euro coins.

John Glenn returned to space via the Space Shuttle. There was a 66-day-long blackout in Auckland, New Zealand. The US government filed an antitrust case against Microsoft.

Smoking was banned in all California bars and restaurants. The first XML specification was released, and Google, Inc, was founded in Menlo Park, California, by two Stanford PhD candidates.

US embassies in Tanzania and Kenya were bombed. It was the year of the Lewinsky scandal. Professional wrestler Jesse Ventura was elected Governor of Minnesota.

And in 1998 Encoded Archival Description (EAD) was released to a world of eager archivists!

A symposium was held to celebrate the 10th Anniversary of EAD!

The day featured talks from European speakers who described the adoption of EAD in their own countries as well as plans for a European archives portal. We also heard from a group of innovative archivists who presented their forward-thinking (and sometimes provocative) views about what the next 10 years will bring.

As a special bonus, registration fees were waived for RLG partners who used code EAD10RLG when they registered online for this event.

Contact: Merrilee Proffitt


Looking for details about the EAD@10 Symposium?

See the agenda for Sunday, August 31 below for meeting details or SAA's EAD@10 Web page for proceedings.