Beginning in the 1990s, archives communities across the globe began to show interest in standardisation. Since then archivists have worked to develop international standards to describe archival holdings. To date, the International Council of Archives developed 4 descriptive standards to improve the accessibility of archival material and to help users better understand and interpret the archival material they use.
However, the 4 international descriptive standards are not used at the same level. Whereas ISAD(G) has received wide spread acceptance internationally since its publication in 1994, the three others are much less used. Moreover, the professionals don't always understand how the ICA standards rely to the same thing and that an implicit and informal conceptual model underlies the differentiation between the components of description: archival materials, actors (creators/holders of archival materials) and functions fulfilled by actors.
Therefore, ICA Committee on Best Practices and Standards prepared a draft of common chapter to be included in all 4 ICA standards on relationships between different types of archival entities, as well as a progress report which is intended to focus on improving the consistency between the content of the standards in their current versions and the main directions of future revisions, including the development of a more consistent conceptual model. Both documents will be presented to the international community at the Brisbane Congress.
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