Rehabilitation of the Archive Service in Bosnia-Herzegovina

Friday, 07 May, 1999: various
Senior archivists from Bosnia-Herzegovina, headed by the director of the Archive of Bosnia-Herzegovina, and coming from both its two entities, the Federation of Bosnia-Herzegovina and Republika Srpska, met together officially for the first time in London at this seminar organized by the Bosnian Institute, with the participation of the International Council on Archives.

Working together with representatives from a range of international and non-governmental organizations and major European archives, they agreed on a common programme and priority action plan for rebuilding the archive service across Bosnia-Herzegovina, which was severely damaged and disrupted during the recent war and has been left in limbo since the establishment of new administrative units following the Dayton Peace Accords.

Three broad areas for future co-operative action were identified: the need to modernise and harmonise the legal framework for the archive service across the country, and in particular to strengthen the position of the Archive of Bosnia-Herzegovina; work to protect the physical condition of archives; and training for staff of both archives and record-creating organizations.

Archives and records are crucial to good governance and essential for ensuring accountability and transparency. Bosnia-Herzegovina, after experiencing a devastating war, is still undergoing major constitutional and economic transitions. The rehabilitation of the archive service in Bosnia-Herzegovina into a modern, effective element of public administration will be a key factor in establishing its ability to function fully as a democratic state.

The seminar was hosted by the Public Record Office, and received financial support from the British Council Sarajevo. Representatives of UNESCO, the International Council on Archives, the Open Society Archive (Budapest), the Packard Humanities Institute (California) the International Multireligious and Intercultural Centre (Sarajevo), Bosnia-Herzegovina Heritage Rescue (London), and the Bosnian Manuscript Ingathering Project (USA) attended, along with senior archivists from Austria, Croatia, Germany, Sweden and the United Kingdom. The seminar was part of the International Seminar Programme of the Bosnian Institute, a London-based non-governmental organization.

Attachment: archivists.pdf
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