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Finding common ground.

Last fall, the International Council on Archives held its quadrennial congress in Vienna, Austria. It offered a rare opportunity to see and hear firsthand of the growth of records management in much of the world outside North America, the United Kingdom, and Australia. Archivists the world over are gaining a new appreciation for and a new understanding of the principles of records management and how the two professions fit together. The two professions have more in common than many may have once thought.

This issue of The Information Management Journal features several articles that examine the role of records manager and archivist in the global marketplace, pointing out the commonalities, the differences, and the potential. Australia's Sue Myburgh sets the stage in her article "Records Management and Archives: Finding Common Ground":

"Changes in the environment have necessitated changes in the practice of both professions as they come to terms with concomitant issues such as privacy, security, intellectual capital, and digital preservation. These changes are also drawing the professions closer together."

An international perspective on the changing role of records managers is next offered up in "Records Managers in the Global Business Environment" by Mike Marsh, Ineke Deserno, and Donna Kynaston. The authors focus on how the role has changed, particularly as a result of changing technologies, and the resulting change in the relationship between IT and records management.

Sharon Alexander-Gooding and Sonia Black give us a glimpse of records management in the Caribbean in "A National Response to ISO 15489: The Jamaican Experience." They recount how a small group of records and information management (RIM) professionals in Jamaica joined forces "to see how they could best capitalize on the status of the international records management standard, ISO 15489 ... and use it to gain momentum in advancing RIM best practices ..."

Finally, a case study on the Getty Center by David Farneth, CRM, and Barbara Nye, CRM, presents another perspective on the relationship between archives and records management. In "Managing Business Records and Archives at the Getty Center," they share how four program areas worked together to develop an integrated records management and archives program.

Electronic records and the courts are at the heart of two of the other articles in this issue. In "Know When to Hold 'Em, When to Destroy 'Em," John Isaza, Esq., focuses on legal holds and spoliation. The article, which is based on a research project he conducted (with funding from the ARMA International Educational Foundation), provides a checklist of considerations that trigger an organization's duty to preserve records.

Thomas Y. Allman introduces us to The Sedona Guidelines in his article "Fostering a Compliance Culture: The Role of The Sedona Guidelines." The Guidelines focuses on legal imperatives that are driving electronic records management. Allman suggests the five guidelines also offer a practical framework for the reappraisal of current policies and procedures.

You don't have to travel to Austria to find out how the RIM profession is growing and changing. Through resources including colleagues, educational materials and courses, and professional associations, you can learn almost everything you need to know about RIM--whether you are in Alabama or Zambia.
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Title Annotation:A Message from the Editors
Publication:Information Management Journal
Article Type:Editorial
Date:Mar 1, 2005
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