Did you know that June 9 is International Archives Day? All around the world, professionals in the archival community unite their voices on June 9 to make you understand why it is essential to support archives and the profession.
The ICA believes that the value of archives and archivists should be promoted at the international level. Archives and archivists play an important role in accountability, transparency, democracy, heritage, memory and society.
During the 2004 International Congress in Vienna, 2000 attending participants adopted a resolution requesting that the United Nations (UN) designates a specific day to mark the importance and value of archives.
In 2005, the United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) declared October 27 as the World Day for Audiovisual Heritage (WDAH) during the 33rd session of the UNESCO General Conference held in Paris, France. WDAH makes an occasion to raise widespread awareness of the need to take urgent measures and acknowledge the importance of audio-visual documents as a representation of our shared heritage and memory. However, audio-visual documents are only a portion of our documentary heritage that warrants international attention.
Subsequently, it was decided at the 2007 ICA Annual General Meeting that June 9 would be celebrated as International Archives Day. The date, June 9, was chosen to commemorate the date ICA was created under the auspices of UNESCO in 1948.
International Archives Week
One year later the first International Archives Day was celebrated, coinciding with the 60th Anniversary of ICA but it wasn’t until 2019 that the ICA expanded the event to an entire week. During International Archives Week (IAW), organisations worldwide share their events and participate alongside ICA to promote the value and importance of archives and archivists.
The objectives of the International Archives Day and International Archives Week, are to:
- raise public awareness of the importance of records and archives;
- raise awareness among senior decision-makers of the benefits of records management for good governance and development;
- improve the public, private and public sectors' understanding of the necessity of long-term archival preservation and access;
- showcase the unique, extraordinary, and rare documents preserved in archival institutions; and
- advance the image of records and archives to enhance their visibility globally.
International Archives Days and Weeks around the world
If you do not feel inspired to celebrate the day or to create events for this week, or if you simply are curious about how this day and week are celebrated in other cultures, just have a look at some examples of activities organized all over the world in the last ten years:
- International Archives Week #IAW2023
- International Archives Week #IAW2022
- International Archives Week: 7-11 June 2021
- International Archives Week 8-14 June 2020
- International Archives Week 3-9 June 2019
- International Archives Day 2018
- International Archives Day 2017
- International Archives Day 2016
- International Archives Day 2015
- International Archives Day 2014
- International Archives Day 2013
- International Archives Day 2012
- International Archives Day 2011