Expert Group on Indigenous Matters – EGIM

Terms of Reference 

The Expert Group on Indigenous Matters was established by the ICA Programme Commission at the meeting in Yaoundé (Cameroon) in November, 2018.

Purpose and objectives

The Expert Group on Indigenous Matters (EGIM) provides a forum for high-level discussions of issues related to the recognition of Indigenous worldviews as vital components of archival theory and method, and the development of protocols for Indigenous knowledge management.

To provide a forum for high-level discussions about Indigenous participation in professional activities, archives and archival management.

Produce analysis and offer advices or guidance at the request of the Executive Board, the Elected Officers and the Secretary General.

EGIM will undertake a variety of projects to support archivists in engaging with Indigenous people and communities worldwide. These activities may be related to, but are not limited to:

  • Indigenization of archival descriptions and subject headings;
  • Implementation of the United Nations Declaration on the Right of Indigenous Peoples as it related to Indigenous knowledge and Knowledge-Keepers;
  • Implementation of the Joinet-Orentlicher Principles;
  • Preservation and accessibility of Indigenous languages within archival materials;
  • Implications of oral history on Indigenous traditions for preserving and transmitting knowledge;
  • Implementation various calls to action and processes for archives and collecting institutions related to Indigenous peoples;
  • Communication regarding the role of archives and collections in supporting communities’ initiatives for reparation and reclamation; and,
  • Implications for archival management and accessibility in the context of transnational Indigenous groups.
  • Investigate Indigenous methodologies for the creation, sharing, use, and safeguard of expressions of Indigenous knowledge.

Standards Committee Role

The Committee shall:

  • Prepare agendas and issue notices for meetings and ensure all documentation for discussion or comment are attached to the agenda.
  • Distribute meetings’ agendas.
  • Take notes of proceedings and prepare minutes of meetings for circulation to members and the general Canadian Archival community.


At each meeting there will be a standard agenda consisting of:

  • Provide updates of activities and progress on deliverables;
  • Feedback from stakeholders;
  • Committee Feedback


  • If unable to attend members may nominate another representative from their organisation to attend. A quorum of minimum of 5 people is required for the meeting to proceed.

Review of Terms of Reference

The terms of reference will be reviewed in 2019.


The Expert Group on Indigenous Matters will apply for funds for its projects and submit a budget as required.


Criteria for membership is recent and extensive experience in work surrounding Indigenous matters within an archival or museum context, and proven expertise in the field. Candidates for membership must submit a brief biography. Priority will be given to potential members who identify with a particular Indigenous group or community.
Members of the Expert Group should be Indigenous. Allies are encouraged to offer support and can apply for supporting membership.

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.

Authored: May 2019