The purpose of this paper is to study how the concept “middle archive” is related to the Swedish archival theory and practice, by exploring its background and its practical and theoretical implications. The overarching aim is to increase the understanding of the interrelations between the archival theory and practice, with a special focus on changes occurring in the digital environment in Sweden.
The paper is based on a qualitative study of texts produced between 2010 and 2013, which were read and analyzed iteratively. The research design and analysis is inspired by Dryden (2014) who recommends taking the context into account. The three types of digital repository developed by Millar (2010) are used as a comparison to further extend the understanding of the concept of the “middle archive”.
The findings indicate that the “middle archive” was introduced as a solution to practical problems of managing digital records, and that there is a need to further discuss how the term relates to existing theoretical, legal and administrative contexts.
The study is limited to contemporary Sweden. The researcher did not follow the discussions and drafts which contributed to the development of the final definitions of the “middle archive”.
The study contributes to the research and development of archival concepts, with a special focus on recent developments in Sweden. The paper highlights some of the challenges relating to archives and records in the context of e- government development.
Funding and collaborative partners are crucial to promote purposeful research. The author would like to thank the County Administrative Board in Västernorrland and Härnösand Municipality for funding the Good Information Governance project (GoInfo) together with Mid Sweden University. The author is also grateful to the Regulatory Network Västernorrland and the National Archives of Sweden for participating in, and contributing to, the project.
Klareld, A. (2015), "The “middle archive” exploring the practical and theoretical implications of a new concept in Sweden", Records Management Journal, Vol. 25 No. 2, pp. 149-165. https://doi.org/10.1108/RMJ-12-2014-0047Download as .RIS
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