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Impacts of the COVID-19 response on government archives and records management

May 21st 2020

2:00 PM EDT | 11:00 AM PDT

On any given day government records managers and archivists respond to a diverse range of information requests from agency staff, business owners, elected officials, the media, researchers and members of the public. The global pandemic has simultaneously and exponentially increased both the production of electronic government records issued to internal and external constituencies, and the demand for access to public records already under management by agencies and archives.

Many public offices are closed and civil servants have transitioned to working from home. Government bodies at all levels are making crucial decisions impacting public health and safety, markets and economies, and the availability of social services. New ways of working have quickly emerged and been adopted without the usual bureaucratic processes and supporting infrastructure, potentially putting government records and the public's trust at risk.

During this session, representatives from the National Association of Government Archives and Records Administrators (NAGARA) and the Council of State Archivists (CoSA) shared their perspectives on how the US public sector COVID-19 response is positively and negatively impacting the ways that electronic government records are captured, accessed and preserved.


NAGARA panelist - Anne Frantilla, City Archivist and Director of Archives and Records Management at City of Seattle, Seattle Municipal Archives

NAGARA panelist – Kristopher Stenson, State Records Manager at Oregon State Archives

CoSA panelist – Tom Ruller, Assistant Commissioner for Archives and State Archivist, New York State Archives

Facilitator – Lori Ashley, Preservica