Terms of Reference
The Expert Group on Research Services and Outreach was established by the ICA Programme Commission at the meeting in Paris in September 2016.
Purpose and objectives
The Expert Group on Research Services and Outreach (EGRSO) provides a forum for high-level discussion of issues related to making archives discoverable through Reference Services, Outreach, Search and other relevant archival concepts. This work includes the creation of tools and resources to assist archivists in informing potential users about collections, facilitating access to collections and encouraging interaction with collections. ERGSO provides expert advice on archival discovery issues to the ICA and its members and liaises on behalf of the ICA with external partners and groups on issues related to providing research and outreach services to clients.
EGRSO will undertake a variety of projects to support archivists in serving their clients, which may include:
- A survey of best practices in the administration of services to the public (online and in-person)
- An analysis of how digitization serves client needs
- Standards for capturing and analysing client data and determining client needs
- Standards for program evaluation
- Exploration of innovative initiatives in the delivery of research and outreach services
The work of the EGRSO will be informed by, and will in turn inform, the work of Expert Group on Archival Description, ensuring that when descriptive issues overlap with client service issues, both groups are aware of the intersections.
The Expert Group on Research Services and Outreach carries out a workplan that will be revised and updated every year for review and approval. The Expert Group on Research Services and Outreach will prepare a written annual report on progress and activities for the members of PCOM, to be tabled at the spring meeting of the PCOM.
The Expert Group on Research Services and Outreach will apply for funds for its projects and submit a budget as required.
Criteria for membership is recent and extensive experience in the management of provision of analogue or digital access to archival holdings and proven expertise in the field. Candidates for membership must submit a brief biography and a statement of interest outlining their proposed contributions to the Group.
Membership in the EGRSO will be approved by the Programme Commission.
A call for EGRSO membership will be made at the next ICA annual meeting, and at following meetings, as required to fill vacancies and ensure membership renewal.
Meetings and communication
Meetings will take place at least twice annually on the occasion of the ICA Annual Conference and at another time to be determined. Meetings will take place in person and online according to the availability of members.